I don’t often take part in blog hops, but when Frankie at As the Bird flies got in touch to ask me to answer a few questions about my writing, I jumped at the chance.
Here’s a little insight into my writing process, if you’re interested!
What am I working on/writing?
At the moment, I have three active writing projects: there’s this blog, my novel, and another potential project that is still in the ideas stage.
I also have a previous manuscript for a novel that I would like to self-publish at some point, but I just can’t squeeze in the time to work on it right now!
How does my work/writing differ from others of its genre?
I’m not sure that it does. When it comes to creative writing, I think my writing style has been heavily influenced by several years of working in marketing and communications. I’ve learned to make my writing very concise and to the point, where it used to be much more descriptive and florid. I tend to go for understated but emotionally punchy. As I visualise the story I’m telling in my mind whilst I’m writing, my work generally has a filmic quality and is quite focused on the action in each scene.
My novel doesn’t fit perfectly into a genre. I think of it as literary fiction, but it also has some thriller and dystopian elements.
I think this blog differs a little from some book-themed websites as there is a mix of lifestyle content too, including travel and photography posts. I prefer to publish thoughtful posts about life as a reader or writer, or general posts on life and inspiration rather than book reviews, although I do feature those too.
Why do I write what I do?
The novel I’m working on has been growing quietly at the back of my mind for the best part of a decade now. It was never quite the right time to start work on it, or the story wasn’t developed enough.
Then during last year’s NaNoWriMo, everything fell into place and the story began to take shape. I’m at the editing stage now, which I find a lot harder.
I tend to get my ideas from a snippet of life somewhere else: a song lyric, a news article, a scene in a film. The idea for this story came from a film I watched years ago. It was quite moving and certain aspects of the plot just stayed with me. I wondered: what if this really happened?
If a story idea is a good one, the big pieces of the plot will come together quite quickly, leaving me to work on the details, polishing them until they fit nicely and the characters seem realistic.
My fiction tends to deal with serious issues, as I prefer to write stories that the reader will hopefully find moving and thought-provoking.
How does my writing process work?
Unfortunately, I’ve never really developed a process. When I’m writing fiction, I’ll try to sit down with the computer as much as possible, rather than waiting for inspiration to strike.
I find writing at night works best for me. I like to put on my headphones and listen to a playlist of melancholy songs, which help evoke the mood I need to be creative. When the words are flowing I’ll work for an hour or two; I usually lose momentum after that. I can manage to write about 1,000 words in an hour if I’m having a good day.
I also tend to edit and tweak as I go; I just can’t help myself.
At the moment, I’m struggling to define my blog writing process. I had a system that worked well for me, but I’ve had to adapt it in recent months after changing jobs and I haven’t quite developed a new routine. Too often I find myself scrabbling around trying to write something at the last minute. I always manage it, but life would be easier if I could get my routine back.
A big thanks to Frankie for inviting me to take part. I always enjoy reading her blog, which is a mix of interesting travel posts and thoughts on writing. She’s also the author of a lovely collection of short stories, Shy Feet, and has another book on the way soon!
In the spirit of the blog hop, I’d like to nominate two other fantastic writers to take part. They are:
On Sara’s blog, fashion, writing, books and inspiration all come together in one place. She’s a recent graduate in Creative Writing and is currently working on her first novel – the snippets of information I’ve heard about it sound really interesting!
A former journalist, Martin also writes short stories, comic strips and other fiction. He’s currently busy with a steampunk themed zombie fiction project that could get bloody!
Look forward to reading your posts!