All right, guys, the countdown to Christmas is ticking. LOUDLY. It seems that way with deadlines, real or self-imposed, going blizzard in the confines of an otherwise calm headspace.
But I’m the nervous type who often imagines things being far worse than they are–could be why I write Romantic Suspense in between sweeter, contemporary romantic offerings like Her Toronto Tycoon! (Mercy Nation: Diamond Dogs Book 3 and a host of other sweet, but deadly romances are on the horizon.)
I’m absolutely not alone, though. My boxed-set sister, the multi-published, prolific Sydney Winthrop is right beside me in the metaphorical trenches. So let’s get to it.
(Warning: This is going to be a quickie. My black sheep family reunion in Vegas–a real nail biter–is under a week away. (That’s a shout out for prayers in case you were wondering. I’d prefer a Merry Christmas instead of headlining the news.) **********************************
1.) So, Sydney, are you a panster or a plotter? And why? (What does method bring to your stories?)
I am totally a panster. I have a friend who completely outlines her story before she writes a word. One day I asked her, “How did you know who the murderer was?” She looked at me in astonishment and quipped, “How can you NOT?” (Team panster scores – AGAIN!)
My characters speak to me as I go. In Fibers of Freedom, I thought Brutus Keller was the bad guy and figured I’d either kill him off or he’d go to jail! He turned into a good guy, fortunately for Duo of Death and Romance, as he’s one of the billionaires! (I‘m glad this Brutus didn’t get in close for the kill!)
2.) Do you find family to be a support, a distraction, or an integral element of your writer’s life?
Two days ago, I would have said they were a support. Today, I have to say, they are not all in support. My husband is, unequivocally. So is my mother! (That’s experience talking.)
One of my daughters has voiced the opinion I’d make more money in a real job and should do so. (OUCH!) Well, true. I would make more money. It’s up to us as writers, however, to make writing a real job.
3.) Tell us a little about the method you bring when you sit down ‘not to work.’ My sweet spot for invention is between 2 and 5 in the afternoon. Mornings I edit. Around those times, if writing is a real job to me, I need to update my book bibles. File. Blog. Market. Research. Learn what other authors in my genre are blogging. That is all work related to my job. (And clearly visible to those like your husband, good man, and your dear mother who likely know better what constitutes a real job!)
Does it pay real money? And how long do I continue before I decide I need a real job? That answer is different for each one of us.
No, kidding, Sydney. Self-determination gives rise to GREAT authors, fantastic fiction, and worthwhile experiences. Gray has its place, but not globbed over everything. So, good on ya, Sis, for the amazing display of patience, wisdom, and restraint–qualities that are required in any startup when dealing with those “frenemies” who would get close to better position the knife. (Et Tu, Brute?)
But it’s that time of year. My gift to my readers, my sister Stacey, and to those naysayers who may foolishly believe that real jobs are all about paychecks, are the wise words of Jay Plemons, a very talented author who is seasoned in following where the spirit leads. This charitable soul lifted me up from my own puddle of WHAT when I was splattered by friendly fire only last month. (Out of the mouths of babes.)
Jay’s words: I support you all the way. Never give up a talent that makes you happy. You’re awesome! (Isn’t THAT awesome? Talk about finding your tribe.)
And the message? We’re each tasked with a variety of jobs. One of which is the primary care and feeding of our true selves. Jay’s writing is raw and real. But if you’re keen to explore the edgy depths of a dystopian world to find exactly what faith can do, read him. Meanwhile, Sydney and I will tool the avenues of inspirational romantic suspense–and sweet contemporary–taking readers on our journey of self-discovery, wherever that may lead. A job, yes, but also a joy. Much like my writing and reading family!
I’d like to thank Sydney, Jay, and each and every one of you. Thank you for being yourselves, frenemies included. To discover more about the works of Sydney Winthrop, stop by her author page:
Read more about Jay Plemons at: