Book Reviews and More

Hi! This blog is for my classes at Texas Woman's University.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Writing Process Blog Tour

Hello everyone!

I'm honored that the lovely and talented Melissa Buron asked me to participate in the Writing Process Blog Tour. Melissa was one of wonderful writers who participated in the Summer Reading and Writing challenge. She is a busy lady! You can check out her writing process blog hop post at Now - onto my answers:

What am I working on?
I am currently focusing on a middle grade novel. I also have several picture books that are works-in-progress that I revisit frequently (usually when I’m stuck on the middle grade novel!).

How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I really, really love dialogue. That’s my favorite thing to write. So a lot of my manuscripts, even my picture books, are dialogue-driven. I especially love books with dialogue directly aimed at the reader. It’s something that I’m working on currently with one of my picture books. It’s so much fun!

Why do I write what I do?
I like to challenge myself with different formats. Sometimes I’m not sure if that’s a good or bad thing - because it’s definitely challenging! So a project often comes to mind because I enjoy books with a certain style of writing, and wonder if I can pull it off. For example, my current middle grade novel has five first person points of view. I decided to write it that way because I personally like books with several points of view. Have I succeeded with it? I’m not sure. I’ll let you know when I finish! It’s entirely possibly that I’ll end up rewriting the whole thing in third person or from just one character’s point of view, but I wanted to give it a try. Another love of mine is epistolary novels (novels written as letters, or these days, even e-mails back and forth). So I’m thinking my next project will be in an epistolary format - I just have to figure out what the story will be!

For my picture books projects, I may focus on different things - like I want to write a book under 200 words, or with an unreliable narrator, or in rhyme, etc. For me, experimenting with styles is part of the fun of the writing process.

How does my writing process work?

It varies depending on whether it is summer or the school year, but overall the processes are generally the same. I do my best writing if I can get the main chunk of it in as soon as I get the kids off to school or before they wake up in the summer. I try to get in 500 words in that first session. Then, during the day, I’ve really been working on taking advantage of shorter spurts of time as well. I’ve started carrying my laptop and/or a notebook with me all the time to try and squeeze in writing whenever I get a chance. This year I have kids in four different levels of school: college, high school, middle school, and elementary school. As you can imagine, I spend a lot of time at a variety of different activities. So while I’m waiting at cross country, gymnastics, baseball, track, swimming, carpool line, etc. I try to write. Sometimes I feel a little anti-social if there are other parents around who would like to chat, so I try to balance my times of being social with times of hiding in my car to write. I’ve found that I can usually get a surprising amount of progress even in those stolen moments of time.

I usually write at home, but I’m also a big fan of writing at the library. It helps me sometimes to get out, so I don’t feel guilty about the never-ending list of things that need to be done around the house. When I first started writing and the kids didn’t have as many evening activities, I used to go to the library every Monday night to write while my husband took care of the kids. That’s where I really started on my writing journey and wrote my very first picture book manuscripts. I loved that uninterrupted writing time, and was so grateful that my whole family supported my writing efforts. I’d love to add that evening writing time once a week back to my schedule - but we’ll have to see how this school year’s activities and my graduate school classes pan out. I think I’ll probably still be typing away in my car for years to come!

Thanks for joining me! Next on the list is the creative and crafty author Rebecca Nolen. I met Rebecca through SCBWI and really enjoy her company. Here's a little more about her: 

Rebecca Nolen was born and raised in Houston, TX, back when it felt like a small town and Foley's had an animated display windows at Christmas. In childhood, she rode her bike up and down trails and caught horney toads and snakes with her brothers. She developed a love for reading. After reading the Nancy Drew series, she would sneak read Alfred Hitchcock magazine, and horror comics until she discovered Author Conan Doyle and Egdar Allen Poe. In tenth grade she read all of Charles Dickens and Robert B. Costain. Now she usually reads British Murder/Mysteries and suspense and children's books. That love of books naturally created a desire to write. She has two published novels, Deadly Thyme a psychological suspense set in Britain, and The Dry a middle-grade dark historical fantasy.

You can find Rebecca at She should have her Blog Hop post up within the next week, so check back often!


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