Today I have another interview with a writer for you! I met Vee through bookstagram and her gorgeous account Floralsndragons. She visited Scotland in the summer and I was lucky enough to be able to spend the day with her. We chatted about writing and so I’ve been desperate to get her on my blog ever since. I hope you enjoy, especially all you doing NaNoWriMo2016 and looking for some inspiration!
1. Introduce yourself! Who are you? What do you write / what genre? What are you currently working on? Do you have any published works?
Hi from the land of Oz! No, I’m just from Canada. I’m Vanessa aka Vee. I had people calling me Nessie growing up, so I had to put a stop before it became a “thing”. Deep down I love romance; the clichés, the adorable love stories—it’s in me. In fact, I get all sappy when I have to read love stories. It’s fun! For me, I usually write romance. I do want to get into paranormal romance, but that’s for another day. I don’t have anything yet published – but soon I hope. I have my first chapter of an older story posted on Wattpad.
Right now—I’m currently diving into two stories. One really dark and outside my comfort zone (yay!) and the other pretty much in lines with what is my comfort zone. One is about a girl who had been kidnapped and has escaped. Now she struggles with coming to terms with her life and the inner demons that she can’t overcome. The other is a girl who is questioning her marriage because she is still tight up on her first love. So, you can see polar opposite ends.
2. When did you first start writing and what motivated you to start?
I remember I had written a story in grade six about a girl who went to school and the world had ended. Everything was a disaster. She had to survive and save the world, only to find out. that it was just a dream. My teacher said I should get into creative writing, but I didn’t believe in myself. Fast forward to high school, my terrible English teacher destroyed my attempts to ever write. After that, I packed up my writing and never looked back. Until last year, when I started this bookstagram. I found a community, who happened to be a great support team, had pushed me. In the past year, I’ve written four stories – not published.
3. What inspires you to write? Can you tell us about the inspiration for any specific pieces of writing you have completed / are working on?
Music. I know it seems simple but it does. I’d be listening to a song and I can literally picture the scene in my head of characters coming about. For example, one of the scenes I’ve been recently working on, I use the song Heroes (the Peter Gabriel version). When I heard it, my whole body was in shock. I felt the pain, the anger, and every other emotion my character were facing. Just hearing melodies of a song creates an atmosphere in my mind that allows me to achieve what I want for the story.
4. How important is the planning stage for you? Do you like to plan everything before you start or do you simply start writing with a vague idea in mind?
Planning vs. Non planning. So when I have a story that I’m dead on wanting to do—I don’t plan. At all. I have an idea in my head and I go with it. I tell my brain to take the wheel. Whatever she says, go forth! When I’m planning, I literally turn Beautiful Mind. I have a white board and create the whole entire “book world”. It doesn’t always work. I’ve rewritten the ending five times for some of my stories because my heart doesn’t know what it wants. I’m literally a disaster when I don’t plan though. I will start writing other parts so my brain can get everything out. I will say the planning stage is important for the key points in the story. The rest will fall into place.
5. What is your writing process like?
I binge write. I will go for days or weeks not writing at all. Not even a single finger with pen moment. Nothing. Until one day my brain sparks a flame and forest fire happens. This will then lead to intense writing. One of the stories I’ve written was completed in two weeks. It was crap—but I did it. I’m pushing myself to write each day as opposed to that. I’m trying to adapt different styles.
6. What are your writing essentials / what do you use when you write?
I lock myself up and listen to music. I try to take away everything that will distract me. I have a tea, my little writing table and my laptop. I usually will have a notebook next to me as I write quotes or do side notes. It wouldn’t make any sense if someone else read it, but it does to me. Night time has always unfolded my creativity.
7. What is your favourite thing to write? E.g. Dialogue, action scenes, saucy scenes…
Action scenes. Whether it be an intense fight or a dramatic turn—those are my favourite. I love laying out the pain and anger I have for what is bugging me. I let the tears come down which gives all the more reason to write those parts.
8. What do you think is the most difficult part of writing?
Saucy. I mean I can do it I just get kind of “silly” when I need to write it. *blushing!
Write. Don’t let anyone tell you can’t. The majority of the famous writers that graced our world were told they wouldn’t make it far in writing.
9. Do you ever struggle with writer’s block? What do you do to overcome it?
YES! Like right now as I struggle to debate whether I go with one story or the other. I have no clue what to choose! My mind becomes a blank canvas with no paint.
10. How do you go about researching for a new book? Do you have any tips for others who are researching for a book?
I try to research as much as I can but sometimes I just want to do it on my own. I get frustrated fast and I give up (which isn’t good). So I tend to keep a stern eye on what advice I take and apply it to my writing.
11. Where do you find your inspiration for character names and place names? Do you ever name characters after people you know?
Yes ….and no. I tend to mix my characters with my friends / family personalities. Names—I never use. How I pick names is that I create a birthdate for my character. I go back to that year and look what were the popular names of that time. I tend to go for ones that catches my eye. I leave it for a night and the next day if I still love it I go for it.
12. What are your future plans when it comes to writing or even publishing?
Next year, I want one of these stories out to the world. I’ve been so scared to release them because I feel people may not like them. Fear always takes over my creativity and never lets me to continue. I don’t want it to have that much power, so I told myself next year I am going to look at publishing the book or selling the story.
13. As we all love books I wondered, what are your five favourite books?
- Stardust by Neil Gaiman
- Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen
- War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
- Wuthering Heights Emily Bonte
- Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
14. Finally, where can we find you on social media?
I hope you enjoyed this weekend’s writer interview, Vee has definitely got me motivated to write! Good luck to anyone doing NaNoWriMo2016!