Reader Letters: Answering a Few of the Trickier Questions

Hello, Writer and Reader Friends!

I spent the last hour reading an incredible bundle of thank you letters from a class in Chicago I Skyped with a few weeks back. Their letters were wonderful to read, especially since the whole group have recently published their own books! They had so much to share about their stories, their writing journeys, and the process of becoming published authors.



There were also a few questions I felt I should answer, and I’ll do it here, just in case anyone else has those same questions at a time when I’m too busy meeting deadlines to answer them all.


Your writing process sounds very frustrating. How do you know what words to type?

I don’t at first! And yes, that can be very frustrating – to have to trust that my brain will somehow start pumping out good words, words I might like enough to include in a real book. Sometimes I throw away whole chapters… or whole books. But that’s okay, it’s all practice, all writing, and I love it. And even though I never really know what words to start with, I know that I’ll have many more chances to go back and change the words on the page. Revision, you know. It’s painful, sure, but it’s where good words can become great words.

How do you write so much?

I avoid pants. No, really. I stay in my pajamas as long as possible, so I can’t possibly go outside or do anything social. And then I wander into my writing room, open up the document… and there’s my work in progress! No pants, might as well write a few chapters… and when I look up, there’s a bunch of new words on the page! I try to get dressed before my kids get home from school. Just in case.

Have you met James Patterson?

No, but if I do, I will tell him thank you for giving all that lovely money to libraries and indie bookstores, and writing so many fun books for kids!

What breed is your dog?

He is a mutt! All my dogs are rescue dogs, saved from shelters. I firmly believe in giving homes to good dogs who deserve them, no matter what breed they are. The best dog editors are those who deeply appreciate the nice soft carpet on the floor where they listen to me read my work out loud. 🙂

Have you tried bacon chocolate?

I have and it made me sad for weeks. How can two beautiful things, taken together, become so repulsive? Oh, the humanity!

And now, back to work! I have the pajamas on, and a new first chapter… I wonder if today’s words will be keepers? I hope so!



Posted in Children's Fiction, People I Love, School Visits on 05/31/2016 06:11 pm

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