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I woke up at 5:55 AM this morning just to ensure my eligibility in the Like a Virgin contest for unpublished YA/NA novels. The organizers of this lovely event have started a blog hop and asked participants to answer the following questions…
1: How do you remember your first kiss?
I didn’t much care for it! I was sitting on the couch in my father’s living room, and I just remember staring at this houseplant across the room wishing it wouldn’t happen. Oh dear.
2: What was your first favorite love song?
Hmm, probably something really embarrassing! I would guess “Forever and Always” by Shania Twain. I went through a country phase around ages 10-13.
3: What’s the first thing you do when you begin writing for the day?
I don’t have a set schedule for writing, so I really couldn’t tell you. When I was working on the first draft of Thursday’s Children, I was in the habit of drinking Arizona lemon tea and using this hemp oil hand lotion that smelled like chocolate and cherries, though.
4: Who’s the first writer who truly inspired you to become a writer?
Probably Margaret Peterson Haddix. I was obsessed with her books when I was little, and I think there’s definitely a bit of that “old school” YA flavor in my writing. Honestly, though, my memories of trying to write stories all but pre-date my memories of reading.
5: Did the final revision of your first book have the same first chapter it started with?
Despite a fair bit of worrying over that, yes.
6: For your first book, which came first: major characters, plot or setting?
Characters, absolutely. To varying degrees, they were living in my head for years before I ever started writing their story, or even knew all of what their story was. Figuring out the plot and the characters was a very synergistic sort of thing, though, because they wouldn’t be who they are at all without the plot. As for the setting, I was really lazy and used my hometown – I really enjoy reading books where I recognize real places, so I thought it would be nice, if I ever get published, to give people from little old Westerville, Ohio that experience.
7: What’s the first word you want to roll off the tip of someone’s tongue when they think of your writing?
Honestly, I have no idea. It’s not that I’m saying voice or technical skill aren’t important, but I really don’t care if people think of my writing as “lyrical” or “bold” or any of those book-reviewer type adjectives. I don’t really care if they think about how I write at all, as long as it doesn’t impede the story. I’d rather they think about the story than how exactly it’s written.