It’s author-chat Saturday!
Please post any questions (writing, author, book related) you have, and I will answer them as soon as possible. You may ask questions or make comments about specific books, but if you include spoilers, please start with a spoiler warning.
If you want to ask a more personal question, I will consider answering that as well, but no guarantees. 🙂
Let’s chat! 🙂
Categories: Author/Reader Chat
Do you have a working title for Reapers 3 yet?
How did you come up with the idea for the Echoes Of The Edge series?
I was having an idea brainstorming session with my kids, and my second-born son suggested a boy in a room with a trunk that was closed in the room but open in the mirror. That was the seed, and I developed the story as I wrote it.
do you have a book that was your favorite to write?
I have a hard time with “favorite” questions. I had joys and difficulties in writing all of my books. At times while writing each one was my favorite, and at times, I disliked each one. It’s a roller coaster.
How difficult was it to get your first non-fiction book published?
Difficulty is “difficult” to measure. In one sense, some might call it easy since I got a contract for the idea with my first submission. In another sense, it was difficult, since I had been trying to get published through fiction for several years. The fiction trials were part of the training ground.
Why did you do three book series about billy and Bonnie?
I kept writing because the story wasn’t finished. That’s what I always do, keep writing until I get to the end of a story.
Have you gotten to the end of the story with Echoes of the Edge?
As far as I know. I haven’t thought about how to continue it.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but were you planning to re-release that series with new covers?
Eventually. I plan to do a rewrite.
Why are you planning to do a rewrite?
To improve it for republishing.
What did Bonnie choose at the end of Tears of a Dragon?
Just kidding. I miss the old forum meme.
I just mentioned to my family yesterday that no one has asked me that question in a long time.
It used to be sort of the initiation for a new forum member. I’d see one ask the question, and I’d be like “Here it comes.” Since I stalked the forum for a long time before joining, I managed to avoid the monkey and the mallet.
How many new story ideas do you have? I know of the super hero story and the scent of her soul, but any others?
I have a middle-grader sci-fi story in mind as well as an adult psychological/supernatural story that I would like to write soon. Many other seeds of ideas are floating around.
When is the Raising Dragons Graphic Novel coming out?
I’m not sure. The illustrator has had many delays, and I am waiting for him to finish it. The newest deadline is less than a month, then it will go to the printing press, which takes a month or two.
My dad once had a teacher who believed that one should never start a sentence with the word “it.” What is your opinion?
I think that’s bad advice. There are few “nevers” in writing. “It” at the beginning of a sentence is fine if the antecedent is clear and there is no need to restate the antecedent noun. For example:
Why shouldn’t we prepare for a tornado? The answer is simple. It won’t happen. The sky is clear.
You could write “A tornado won’t happen” but it’s unnecessary and a bit redundant.
Yet, there are times when starting a sentence with “it” is not the best choice.
It is a monster that haunts your dreams.
This might be great dialogue from someone who wants to emphasize, but most people would say, “A monster haunts your dreams.”
In any case, if that teacher really said “never,” he or she gave bad advice.
He really did say “never” and even took points off when one did so. Apparently it was a personal pet peeve.
I have witnessed bad advice from many writing teachers. I pity aspiring writers who hear conflicting teaching.
Was it hard to say goodbye to the characters from the Dragons in our Midst?
I don’t feel like I have said good-bye. They are still in my mind. I am glad, however, that the story world has come to an end. It was long enough. 🙂
Well I hope that sometime we will have a small adventure with them I last time
What was the fastest and/or easiest book for you to write and how long did it take?
Tears of a Dragon and The Scent of Her Soul each took one month to write the first draft.
Wow! Was that because you had a passion for them, the story just flowed really well, or something else?
The story flowed well, and I had plenty of time to write.
Is there a specific tune that the songs from the DiOM/OoF/CotB should be sung to? I feel like you might’ve posted a video at some point, but if you did, I’ve lost it.
No. Feel free to make up your own tunes.
Ok, just wondering. I’ve always just recited them as poetry, if I decide to read them out loud.
BTW, one other thing: who did the “Author Chat” picture in this post?
James Art Ville
What do you think of videogames as platforms for storytelling? Did you enjoy writing for Stargate: Unleashed? How was writing for a videogame different from writing a novel? Was the storyline written to its conclusion before the studio was shutdown? Are you allowed to reveal what would have happened?
I didn’t do any writing for Stargate. I was in a story-development brainstorming session that ran across several days. Then our ideas were presented to the main writer. I don’t know what happened after that or how many of our ideas were used. I never saw the final product.
Thank you for answering!
How do you choose names for your characters? Do you just pick one you’ve always lied or do you go through a baby names book…?
I usually use baby name websites.
Does your daughter Amanada, still write?
Is there another book coming out by her soon?
She writes occasionally. She has three jobs now, so she doesn’t have much time. She has no books coming out in the near future.
What gave you the idea to write the Echoes from the Edge series? (I just finished reading the first one and it was awesome!)
Someone already asked that. See above. 🙂
I know it’s the day after the chat, but how do you write such amazing and complex poetry/riddles? Do they just flow without a ton of effort, or does it take some time to get the rhymes to match and get the deep message in it you want?
Sometimes they are easy and flow without effort. Sometimes they take a great deal of time and effort.