Morton Gray invited me to contribute to this blog tour where writers share their process. Morton is a member of the RNA’s New Writers’ Scheme and is busy polishing novels to submit for publication. She was shortlisted for the Festival of Romance New Talent Award in 2013. Her blog at www.mortongray.blogspot.com is a glorious mixture of things she comes across on her writing journey. To follow Morton via twitter search for MSGray53 or on Facebook as Morton Gray.
She asked me about my writing process all I can say is:
It’s a bit of a habit..!!
Nooooo not that kind of habit….!!
This kind of habit..!!
What am I working on?
I am currently working on my 2nd Novel. The first one ‘Broken Jigsaw’ was completed in February 2014 and I swiftly moved onto the next which has a working title called ‘Keeper of the House’
It has the stunning backdrop of Wrea Head Hall, one of my favourite country house hotels. I would recommend it to anyone and everyone. Except if I did, you’d all go… and then it would be fully booked when I needed a room.
After gaining permission from the owner of Wrea Head Hall. I set to work putting together a plot. I have already run the plot past Gerry and even though it’s going to involve romance, mystery, crime and intrigue… he is more than happy for me to continue.
How does my work differ from others?
I’m not sure that it does.
I try to include a varied story which has everything going on from romance through to murder. I fully understand that life isn’t moonlight and roses and sometimes things happen that are out of your control. I like my characters to have lives like that. I also feel that lots of twists and turns make it more exciting for the reader. Provided the plot doesn’t get too complicated.
I also like to write a main story along with one or two sub stories. My characters have real lives with naughty puppies, children, siblings, parents and ex-husbands or partners.
Why do I write what I do?
I have no idea.
I put on my thinking cap… and somehow it just happens.
I come up with a heroine. Really get to know who she is. I almost need to know her like I would a best friend, her likes, dislikes, career, family, pets, and children. The story comes to life all by itself and does its own thing on the page.
I actually started writing romance, yet it turned out that my novels fall into the romantic thriller genre. (not sure what that says about me)
When I wrote Broken Jigsaw. I created a heroine. I then gave her a past, a new job, a nasty boyfriend and a gorgeous new boss.
All in all, I turned her life upside down. But her boss, Jack Parker is always there to pick up the pieces. He’s kind, considerate and amazing in bed. What more could a girl want? Well, she might not want a cheating, drug selling, love rat of a boyfriend.
Everything gets in their way….
But… In the end there is always LOVE.!!
How does my writing process work?
I’m habitual. If I’m not writing then I’m thinking about writing. The plot is always there, working away in the back of my mind.
My normal writing week
I’m a Sales Director for a stationery and office supplies company in Doncaster. This obviously takes up the majority of my day. I normally get home, eat tea, put in the washing, start the dishwasher, jump into my pj’s and then I sit down.
I have my laptop handy at all times and try to find time every evening to do something, even if that’s just little research on the laptop.
My main writing time is at weekends.!!
My weekends are precious to me and I normally wake up early, around six.
Go to the lounge and get comfy with the lap top on my knee. Some weekends I don’t move. I just write. Especially if the hubby goes to the football, it’s my perfect excuse.
If I don’t do this, you can guarantee my writing takes a back seat until after everything else. I am after all a housewife, step-mother and nana to two beautiful and very energetic children.
I’m not the sort of person who can plot everything on hundreds of post it notes, pin them to a wall and then write the book systematically.
I tend to think about a story for a long time before I get to type a word. I often sit with mugs of coffee staring at walls telling my husband that I’m working.
By the time I begin to write. I’ve got to know my heroine. I know the hero. I know all about the way they are going to get together and most of all. I know EXACTLY what will happen on the last page and have a good idea of what I need to do to get them there.
All I have to do then, is find all the little words and join them together… ensuring I have a beginning, middle and an end. Not as simple as it sounds but perseverance and sheer determination helps?
I’m a little OCD. Well… OK… Maybe I’m a lot OCD..!!
I have perfectly ordered kitchen cupboards, wardrobes in colour co-ordinated order and perfume bottles lined up in size order.
However, when I do sit down to write… I tend to edit as I go. I’m constantly going back and re-writing chapters. Each chapter has to be complete before I move onto the next. I then go back, and make them better.
After a while, the characters start to get ahead of themselves and begin doing their own thing on the page. They have a voice, a personality and I can’t always control them. Most of the time – I wouldn’t want to.
I allow the story to happen. Then, I go back and include new characters or pieces of plot that I need to ensure the story moves forward and the reader feels fully informed.
Getting to the end
Before I can consider the work finished. I send it to beta readers whom I trust implicitly…. And then I wait for their opinions, comments and feedback. The editing begins again… and finally… I get to write the words ‘the ends’
I love getting to the end. I love writing these words, but most of all I love to find out how it’s going to end just as much as everyone else. It’s still quite a mystery to me how I get there.
I’m just very happy that I do…!
Next on the blog tour.!!
Vasiliki Scurfield is a member of the RNA New Writers’ scheme.
She has been shortlisted in various short story competitions, including one in the Writers’ Magazine in 2013. Having waved goodbye to three, she still has one chick left in the nest.
She works full time and runs a gymnastics club as a volunteer. When she’s not doing all that, (and sometimes while she is) she writes.
You can find her on twitter @vasiliki66 or like her page on facebook as Vasiliki Scurfield.