Okay, so I wasn’t tagged but I couldn’t resist. Sometimes we have to create our own opportunities. I read this on K. M. Allan’s blog and felt compelled to fill it out myself.
The rules are simple:
• Post the Tag and Image on your blog.
• Thank whoever nominated you and link back to their blog.
• Mention the creators of the award and link back to their blogs.
• Nominate 6 bloggers and notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
Let the questions begin…
Name one novel that inspired you to write.
The Sea Sword by Adrienne Martine-Barnes. It was such an interesting fantasy take on the Hindu goddess Kali and I enjoyed it very much.
Since I do what I want (apparently), I’ll add two more books: Ursus of Ultima Thule by Avram Davidson and The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley.
What’s your favorite genre to write and read?
Speculative fiction. I used to say I liked progressive fiction but the authors I enjoyed at the time became mostly erotica and less supernatural crime, which is what I really enjoyed. I believe that horror has the capacity to guide us away from ills in society and as individuals; science fiction helps us imagine a future worth achieving; and fantasy helps us answer “what if”.
Though it’s taken wildly out of context, these words by Dickens sum it up well:
Welcome, everything! Welcome, alike what has been, and what never was, and what we hope may be, to your shelter round the holly… where what is sits open-hearted! … On this day we shut out Nothing!
Do you prefer to write stand-alone or series?
I don’t know. Stories come to me and sometimes they are succinct and others? They are fractals. In the words of Whitman, “Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.”
Use 3 words to describe yourself.
Mercurial. Diligent. Ambitious.
Reveal your WIP image that represents your MC or setting.
Okay, it’s more than one picture. I made this a while back but didn’t have a chance to use it.
How long did your first MS take to draft?
About three months.
Who is your author idol?
Neil Gaiman. He’s so creative, inspiring, and evocative. Some of his books have given me nightmares, which I know it doesn’t sound like that’s a good thing but it means it made such an impression that my subconscious had to process it. That’s powerful.
My screenwriting idol is Bryan Fuller. When I found out he was showrunning “American Gods”, I did a happy dance.
Share a writing memory that made you determined to carry on.
My first full length novel I wrote when I was seventeen. It was in response to a tragedy I experienced the year before: my sweet sixteen boyfriend died in front of me in an accident. As a teen this was devastating and the people around me were not supportive. The book was titled, Like a Sponge in Winter. I’ve been told it’s a terrible title. It comes from a line in the book where a supporting character tells the main character that during winter these freshwater sponges develop a hard exterior to stay alive but when spring returns the sponge softens again.
I then decided I wanted to write genre fiction instead. Yes, I enjoy literary fiction upon occasion but speculative fiction is my first love.
Tell us something surprising or unique about yourself.
I have a warped sense of humor. Not unique but I don’t think people expect it. In fact, my very first rejection was due to my humor. It was when I was a teen. I wrote a parody of Wuthering Heights, which definitely has some comically sketchy elements to it. I was told it was trashy and didn’t uphold their literary standard. I was so downtrodden that I deleted it. Yeah, I won’t do that again! Lesson learned.
My husband said I should say that I’ve been scuba diving in four different countries, which is true.
I took this picture of Caribbean Reef Sharks at about 100 feet down next to a wreck in the Bahamas last year – the “Ray of Hope” was the ship’s name. I love the way the sunlight dissipates through the water. Sharks are such misunderstood creatures and are so majestic.
Share the hardest part about being a writer and how you overcame it.
Rejection is the hardest part of being a writer for me. I suppose each rejection must be overcome by itself. Some are easier than others. A few days ago I received a particularly scathing letter wherein the agent wrote they didn’t like the concept, the beginning, or the writing. Well, then. There’s a quote from Dita Von Teese that comes to mind:
What’s your favorite social media and why? Share your link.
Twitter. I’ve enjoyed the writer’s culture since it’s so supportive.
Share some uplifting wisdom in six words or less.
Nothing’s perfect. Just do your best.
Here are my nominations:
2. K. Callard
3. Ariana Allen