So, let's get to the questions, shall we...
What am I currently working on?
I think the real question is, what am I currently not working on? At the moment I have 4 projects in the works, which is crazy. My NA contemporary is out with Betas as we speak, I'm getting close to the middle point in the first draft of a gender-bending-heavy YA High Fantasy and I'm just getting started on a YA rom/com. But the project that I'm most excited about is a short story for YA Dystopian Anthology that should be coming to you in the next couple of months... (fingers crossed) It's my baby and I'm so glad that I got a talented team of authors to contribute.
My story takes place in a worn down America and it's all about a revenge plot with plenty of gore and guns. Let's just say that these stories are going to be something rather different and amazing to get you in the mood for Christmas! And let's just say that I've been watching lots of Tarantino flicks! Bear Jew anyone?!
How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Okay, is this question easy to answer? No, it's not. I guess I would have to say that my Contemporary novels have a definite Indie movie vibe to them. The stranger and quirkier the characters the better. Think weird settings and ridiculous antics and you're probably on the right track.
My darker pieces tend to be mind benders. I like to trick people. I like to show you something in a guarded light and then flip it on it's head. I'm inspired a lot by the works of Neil Gaiman and Joss Whedon and Danny Boyle. Once again, the weirder the better. I'm starting to think that that should be my slogan. Also, I'm totally okay with death...
Why do I write what I write?
I think I write what I write to see what my brain will come up with once I give it free reign. Life has a certain set of rules that you're supposed to live by (and I already break most of those) but when you're writing, anything goes. It sparks your brain and let's you create outside of the lines. It sets a picture in front of you along with colored markers and says "screw the lines, just do your thing." No one sees it until you deem it ready and I love that.
How does my individual writing process work?
It starts with a spark and usually a song. I'm a huge music junky and have even dabbled in music journalism over the years, so it's no surprise that music plays a huge role in my writing. My high fantasy is actually based on a Wolfmother song (insert unasked for music endorsement here). First thing I do before writing the first line is create a character board on Pinterest and pick out theme songs for each of the main characters, then I build a playlist off of that. Then I outline, and by outline I mean write a couple paragraphs about what happens. I'm not much of a plotter, but I do tend to write down important facts that I come up with as I write on the fly so that I know what's happening as I continue on. You can always find my unicorn clad notebook next to me as my fingers fly across my laptop keys (his name is Oscar Wilde). I also like to write really character driven books, so I write at least one large paragraph for each main character before I dig in. The other thing I like to do is pick a few movies that get me into the mood of the novel I'm working on and I'll watch them if I feel like I'm lost. But when it comes down to it, I force myself to write every day and get words down on paper.
And now I tag some awesome author buds...
Kate Jarvik Birch. Seriously, this woman writes some twisted little books. She has a book out with Bloomsbury Spark called "Deliver Me" and another called "Perfected" which is published through Entangled Teen. I just adored "Deliver Me" and I know that I'll get to "Perfected" soon. Through many internet chats we've also come to learn that we're practically twins, which makes her pretty cool in my book. (see what I did there?) Oh and she's also a part of said Dystopian Christmas Anthology, so she's literally in my book as well.
Jen McConnel. She writes about hunky Scottish gents and witches and goddesses and wonderful things like that. Her NA books "The Secret of Isobel Key" and "Her Secret Inheritance" are Bloomsbury Spark releases and I enjoyed both immensely. She's also a part of the Month9 family with her YA "Daughter of Chaos." If you have a thing for travel in your books, read hers.
Leigh Talbert Moore. Leigh has been a huge supporter of my writing since the beginning. She's also one of the authors that made me understand that self-published books could be a wonderful thing. She's written a slew of YA and NA titles and I highly recommend them all. Everyone should read her novel "Rouge", because I need the sequel to exist. Maybe I should start a campaign to get everyone to read that book? You'll also be able to see a sample of her writing in that Dystopian Christmas Anthology I was talking about earlier.