Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Fun for Spring . . .
Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan, the smart women behind this website, are the co-authors of the new book seen here. And it's a fabulous, funny, SMART, guide for all of us when we're looking something fun (and maybe beach-y) to read. I asked Sarah my regular "In Their Own Words" questions and here are her answers . . .
1.) How did you come up with the idea for this book? Are you more driven by plot or by character?
The idea was originally suggested to us by Rose Hilliard at St. Martin's, who asked, "Have you ever thought about writing a book on romance novels?" To which we said, "Hahahahha! What?"
As a reader - I love looking at questions like this. Am I driven by plot or character? Both equally, demanding whore that I am! I love characters who are nuanced, who aren't what I expect, who do or say things that I wasn't ready for but fully respect and want to follow onward from that page. And I love plots that carry those characters to places that neither they nor I are prepared for, that don't follow the expected progression through courtship and tribulation and resolution.
BUT - if I have to pick one, I'm a character reader. A very standard plot trope between two incredible characters will rock my world every time in the hands of a skilled writer. Characters, especially truly realistic ones, are definitely my preference.
2.) Who's your favorite character in this book and why?
Aside from me and Candy? Mavis! She's our stereotypical romance reader, as illustrated by Joanne Renaud, who looks like one might expect: fanny pack, slippers, baggy pants, kitten sweatshirt. But in the book, she has terribly insightful and clever things to say.
You can see her here.
3.) What's your writing process/writing environment like?
It depends. Sometimes it's "Butt in chair, hands on keyboard." And sometimes I go into what I think of as "word labor," when something I've been ruminating on starts to percolate and the words are coming NOW GRAB A PEN AND START TAKING NOTES FOOL. That happens every now and again and I'm always blown away when it does, and thankful for wherever that shot of awesome came from.
4.) What's your favorite part of writing?
You know that feeling when you write something that totally works for you, that ties everything together or makes you see another layer to what you're trying to say, and you're kinda blown away by the idea that came flying out of your own brain? That. Love that.
5.) What's the best piece of advice you've ever gotten about writing?
From Laron's collection at NinthMoon.com: BICHOK. Butt in chair. Hands on keyboard. This shit ain't gonna write itself.
Happy Reading, everyone!