The Writer Tag | Twenty Questions

You can’t teach an old dog new tricks, they say. Now I may not understand half the Twitterness out there and some of it still confuses me, but I saw this one crop up recently and decided to participate. Apparently it’s been around for awhile and I’m just late to the party. But what else is new? I’m really not one to follow trends or go along with the crowd.

It’s been some time since I’ve updated my blog, and some time since it was a fun kind of post. There were so many examples of this tag to choose from and decided to go with the one on Inkblots and Icebergs‘ website. I don’t think you’re supposed to nominate anyone after you’re done posting it, like you do on Twitter. Let’s see how this goes!

1. What type of writing do you do?

Prose. All prose. I attempted poetry as a teenager for the Creative Writing class I had to take in high school and it wasn’t the greatest. I dabble in some short stories, but I like the flexibility writing novels gives me. Perhaps once I’m more practiced I’ll enter short story competitions but for now, I have a few posted on my site.

2. What genres/topics do you write about?

Right now it’s historical fiction; possibly a cross between historical fantasy and gaslamp. I’m still trying to figure it out! I do have another story on the side, an idea that came to me incredibly late one night, sitting in an untouched document for whenever I’m done with this first series. That one’s definitely more young adult.

3. How long have you been writing?

Since childhood. I can’t pinpoint the exact age, but I remember staying up late at night writing. There was also the Unfortunate PC Event where my computer, a Frankenstein of pieces from other desktops, fried and spit out ozone. The whole house surged in power and I lost everything. This was the early 90s. We barely had space on floppy discs for documents longer than five pages. I just aged myself…

4. Are you published?

Only in my high school’s literary magazine. And after that, only in my dreams!

5. What was the first story you ever wrote?

Apparently I wrote fanfiction before I knew that existed. So I’m fairly positive that my first story was based on Star Trek: Voyager. Decidedly one of the least popular of the genre, it was one of my favorite series growing up. I never showed them to anyone and typically inserted myself into the story. I also used to write Supernatural fanfiction. One was pretty popular but I’ve always had trouble ending stories. So I ran out of steam and direction and never finished it.

6. Why do you write?

To get out aggression and perhaps things I wouldn’t say in real life. That really makes me sound like an angry person. I’m really not, though I’d say I’m more of the “glass is half empty” type. But writing calms me and allows me the freedom of expression. I typically don’t volunteer things in group conversations but boy can I write one! Introverts for the win!

7. How do you find time to write?

I guess the common-sensical (I made that word up) answer is by looking at my calendar. My job is part time right now (hoping to gain more hours soon), so sometimes I have a couple of days in a row I know I can write.

Another thing that’s been helpful is I deleted my Instagram account before Christmas last year and just last week I deactivated my Facebook. Both were great distractions and I found myself asking “I don’t have time to write, but then I have all this time to mindlessly surf the web?” Now I only use this site and Twitter.

8. When and where are the best time to write?

I, honestly, find this a very poorly worded question. The wannabe editor in me is mentally screaming at it right now. Moving on. I can write almost anywhere – except when my niece and nephew are tearing up my parents’ house during family dinner nights. I’m definitely more focused writing away from home, like in the library or at Panera. Set times don’t exist in my life.

9. Favorite foods/drinks while writing?

I’m going to sound like an old lady with this answer but for my drinks it’s chamomile tea with honey and ice water. And I don’t really like munching while I write. I reserve that for when I need to take a break and walk around.

10. You’re writing playlist?

I have several playlists spanning multiple genres. Feel free to follow the links below to discover something new! (They’re all links to YouTube lists).

International (Irish, German, Chinese, Japanese)
BTS, Girls’ Generation & SHINee (South Korean Pop)
Writing Playlist (I can only handle this one in small doses)

11. What do friends/family think of you writing?

It was quite a mixed reaction when I told them I’m working on a novel series.
Dad: doesn’t see it as a viable profession
Mom: “I’ll correct your grammar for you!”
Uncle (who’s published): “It’s good enough to be middle grade…shorten your sentences…”
But I think what they’re all thinking is that I have a history of not seeing things through that I start. I’m determined to see this through!

12. What parts of writing do you enjoy the most?

The research, choosing my words carefully and editing. I’m not much of a plotter so going by way of having an outline has been quite helpful.

13. Parts of writing you find challenging?

Tenses. Tenses tenses tenses. I always seem to flip back and forth between past and present tense so I always look back through every paragraph I write to try and catch them before moving on. Sounds obsessive compulsive, I know. But I have to.

14. What do you write with/on?

For the most part I use my Chromebook, with an occasional note that I stick on a wall or my fridge. All my research is in notebooks. I like being able to cross things out, “arrow” and asterisk and highlight things I may include.

15. How do you overcome writer’s block?

Sometimes I don’t. I just let it happen. If it’s for a month or more, so be it. I found that if I force it the story just doesn’t seem right. It’s forced. But then there’ll be that day I’ll get a spark of an idea and I can’t stop writing for hours.

I think I’m also too logical with this writing business for my own good (probably because I’m less logical in other areas of my life). I refuse to start any other projects until this series is written. So I don’t allow myself the luxury of having side stories so I can churn my outline over and over in my head.

16. How do you motivate yourself to write?

I think I’m also too logical with this writing business for my own good (probably because I’m less logical in other areas of my life). I refuse to start any other projects until this series is written. So I don’t allow myself the luxury of having side stories so I can churn my outline over and over in my head.

Did I truly answer that question? Eh…it is what it is at this point!

17. Author(s) who inspired you to become a writer?

Easiest question in this survey: Cornelia Funke. My uncle gifted me with the first book of her Inkworld series as a teen and I immediately fell in love. Later, when my one cousin got old enough, I bought her a copy and asked Ms. Funke to sign it. She agreed, I sent her the book, and not only did she sign it for Maddie (my cousin), but she signed a bookmark for me! I don’t even use the bookmark. It sits proudly on my shelf staring at me as I write.

19. Writing goals this year?

To finish writing my series; or at least book one
To travel more for research
To join the Historical Novel Society

20. Best advice you’ve gotten as a writer?

I’ve forgotten who said it or where I read it, but I’ll paraphrase it here: pave the way for yourself. You’re not obligated to have to do it one way or another. Write the story first. Everything else is secondary.

Everything else is secondary.

Even “networking” on Twitter.

*goes and posts this blog up on Twitter*


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Budding #historian. Writer of #adventures and #sciencefantasy. Lover of mushrooms and libraries. Fan of #chocolate, #books and Pennsylvania history.

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