I have been encouraged/bullied [delete as appropriate] into blogging about my writing process by the lovely/evil [see previous instruction] Louise O’Neill, whose debut novel Only Ever Yours I’m greatly looking forward to [no disambiguation necessary].
1. What am I working on?
I’m wrapping up the first draft of True Power, the final book in the True Trilogy, and preparing for the release of the first book (my debut) True Fire. After that, I’ll be starting the rewrites on True Dark, the second book, and trying to remember who’s dead and who’s alive.
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
It’s a fantasy without any fantasy, or rather, a story set on another, medieval world where there’s no magic, no fantastical animals, no wanton violations of the First Law of Thermodynamics.
3. Why do I write what I do?
I want to provide readers with enjoyment — laugh, cry, groan, eager to turn the next page — but I also want to sneak (or bludgeon) in my ideas on politics and society and religion and morality and science.
4. How does your writing process work?
I still work as a software engineer Tuesdays to Fridays, so I usually only get the long weekends to write, and then normally the mornings and late afternoons. I don’t outline to a great extent, just formulate an idea what happens in each of the acts (quarters) of the book. The first draft is where I discover up the story. In this case, I aim to get 1,000–1,500 words done a day, though some sections are easier than others (I’m faster with at dialogue than action). The second draft is where I fix up the plot and characterisation; hard to say how this fast this proceeds. The third draft is for fixing language and other issues; if I’m good, I can get an act done in a three-day weekend. Writing is always done with copious numbers of espressos, various music, and with a continuing battle over my chair with one of my cats. Unlike certain people I could mention, I’m always showered, dressed and minty-fresh.
You can also read about the writing processes of the other writers Louise tagged: Mel Salisbury, author of The Sin Eater’s Daughter, which is due out next year; and Elizabeth Aaron, author of Low Expectations, due this July.