Monday, March 24, 2014

On what I laughingly call my writing process

I've been tagged by the lovely Tiakall to write a blog post about my writing process. I'm not sure I actually HAVE a process, but hopefully the questions in the post will help me focus and define this. So, without further ado:

What am I working on?

Most of you know the answer to this, and I talked about it at length in my last post. (I knew I was going to be answering the same questions twice this week.) My main project is a Paranormal Romance called Eternity's Price about Catie and Eli, two vampires who have been denying their feelings for each other since World War II. In the midst of their love story is a plot to try to prevent the apocalypse. As in, the main villain may or may not be the Antichrist. 

I have more books planned in the same series, though. And to some extent I've started writing on them, mostly a few scenes here and there, just to get them on paper before I lose them. So, in the order I have planned for them:

Eternity's Redemption is the prequel to Eternity's Price. It's the story of Eli's Sire, Anastasia, and his friend Nicolaus - the driving force behind the attempt to stop the apocalypse in Eternity's Price. Redemption scares me a little as a writer, because it uses a story structure I have never attempted before. It's a frame story, with the bulk of the story being told in flashbacks, that are not being shown in chronological order. And it spans 1300 years all total. It's a huge project, but it's a story that I think needs to be told.

Eternity's Promise picks back up where Eternity's Price leaves off. The battle of Sangue Collina has been fought, and the vampires and werewolves are all trying to get back to some semblance of normal (I love using "vampires", "werewolves", and "normal" all in the same sentence.). Catie's friend Dani arrives and starts a flirtation with Eli's friend Marcus.  But there's really no such thing as "normal" in Sangue Collina. A science experiment conducted by the German military during World War II had gone very bad. The results had laid dormant all this time, but something in Sangue Collina is reawakening it. 

And that's where I run out of titles. The next book shifts focus to the mages, though. The vampires are still in it, but this is the mages' show, now. Nicolaus has called for reinforcements. A time mage is no match for zombies, what he needs are necromancers and energy mages. But mages were not meant to so heavily populate one city. Livvi, especially, is a force to be reckoned with. Her time mage father had seen this coming and used his own abilities to speed up her training. But the power to level entire cities in the hands of a 22 year old girl in way over her head may not really be the best thing.

And reading through these descriptions, I'm starting to wonder if I really write Paranormal Romance, or if I write Urban Fantasy with a strong romantic element to it. Where is the dividing line, anyway? *Adds this to her research list* Anyway... I guess I should get around to the next question...

How does my work differ from others in my genre?

This is a really good question. I kind of wish I had a really good answer LOL. I try to tackle big topics.  My tagline for the series as a whole is "If you literally had forever, what would matter most to you?" And a big theme running through all of the books is the characters all trying to find their own answers to that question. Religion gets brought up more than once and is a fairly big part of Eli's life. The FMC of Redemption is a psychopath. That's actually the meaning behind the title. It's all about whether Nicolaus can fix Ana's shattered mind and redeem her. In Promise, we see what happens when we try to play God. And Livvi becomes an example of what can happen when someone with more power than she knows what to do with loses control. Plus, I'm straddling a line with my genre. I'm either writing Paranormal Romance with major, fate of the world is at stake here, stuff going on around them, or I'm writing Urban Fantasy with a romance as the main subplot. 

Why do I write what I do?

Well, it started out because I had two vampires grab me by the throat and refuse to let go until I agreed to write their story. Or at least that's what it felt like. And so Eli and Catie were born. While writing a scene with Ana, I fell in love with her and my muse decided that her story needed to be told. The other two came from various inspirations. This is what is burning in my blood, right now. I've tried my hand at other genres, but nothing else has ever gotten me so excited as this series does. It's like I've finally found my home as a writer. And in a way, I've come full circle, while also growing up. The first story I remember that I wrote was a horror story about... zombies. I wrote it in sixth grade. It was stupid, and childish, and really made no sense, but I wrote it, and my teacher liked it enough to have me read it to my class. And now, here I am, once again writing about zombies, and vampires, and werewolves. Only now it isn't horror, and there's a point to it. (And hopefully it makes more sense.)

How does my writing process work?

Usually, I start with a character, or two characters. Something about them speaks to me, and I start building a story around them. A song will inspire a scene, or a character, or the plot of an entire book. (My mages book started to take shape after hearing Katy Perry's "Dark Horse" and having two unconnected lines ("So you wanna play with magic" and "are you ready for a perfect storm?") connect in my head to create Livvi, and give me a great scene with some awesome lines. "There's a reason why energy mages are the ones that other mages fear the most. Livvi may not look like much, but you don't mess with someone who can tell the laws of Physics to go fuck themselves." is probably my favourite. The line is spoken by her boyfriend as an explanation of what is going on, because a freaked out Livvi is in the process of creating something like a hurricane - in Illinois.) Anyway... After I get some inspiration for a few random scenes, I usually have an idea of what kind of plot I have, or at least what the main conflict is about. I can make some semblance of an outline from there, though I don't always. Then it's time to fill in the rest. My first draft is very dialogue heavy, and I have a tendency towards long scenes. Those are both things I intend to fix in edits and rewrites. As for the writing process itself, I usually put a song that fits the mood of the scene I'm writing on repeat, put my headphones on, and let the music inspire me. Really, I don't know if I HAVE a writing process. I may have mentioned that way back at the start of this thing, but I don't feel like scrolling up to check. 

Anyway. This ended up longer and more... rambly than I intended, but it was kind of fun. Come back Friday for my weekly 90 Day Writing Challenge check-in where I'll talk about exactly where the idea for this story came from.

Tag, you're it

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like you have a lot on your plate! I don't think I could ever write about vampires or zombies, not my style, lol. But good for you! :) And thanks for tagging me - I will be sure to post mine. :)

    I do have an article that helps explain the difference between paranormal and urban fantasy. It's a short article, but it helped me understand. :)