January 29, 2014

Author Interview via The Reading Cat

What book genre of books do you adore?
Speculative fiction and memoir.

What book should everybody read at least once?
The Outsiders.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?
I was born in Kensington, Maryland - a small, dry town just outside of Washington D.C. I went to the University of Maryland, College Park and moved to San Francisco a week after graduation. After five years, I headed south to Los Angeles where I live today. I came for the opportunity and stay for the weather. I love the city, but my dream is to retire in the small town of Ojai, CA.

How did you develop your writing?
By writing, writing and writing.

Do you find it hard to share your work?
I love sharing my work. When I was in junior high school, I’d write stories in my spiral notebook and read to my classmates. They couldn’t wait to get to class the next day to hear what happened.

Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you?
My family is incredibly supportive. My father is my number one blog commenter. I drive my poor friends nuts with my constant requests for their support. I wouldn’t be as inspired to keep going without the love and support of my family and friends.

Do you plan to publish more books?
Absolutely. The City Center is the first in the series. I’m not sure how many there will be total, but I’m staying open to the possibilities.

What else do you do to make money, other than write? It is rare today for writers to be full time…
I’m a freelance project manager in advertising. The job requires a lot of organizing, communicating and planning ahead. I’ve become an expert on managing the creative process – with a smile.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
Sometimes I fantasize about living in Paris, but then I’d have to start drinking, smoking and eating meat again.

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?
I write on a laptop at my dining room table. When I start to get cabin fever I go to a coffee shop to be around other humans. I keep a notepad next to my bed and write notes when they come to me in the middle of the night. I learned the hard way that I won’t remember them in the morning.

The City Center
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Science Fiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author and the book
Connect with Simone Pond through Facebook and Twitter

Original source: http://thereadingcat.blogspot.com/2014/01/author-interview-simone-pond-simonepond.html

Keep writing. It saves lives.

January 24, 2014

Why writing an outline IS creative

Ugh. Outlines. Right?

I had a few meetings this week to talk about the writing process, and the same issue came up three different times - all the writers I met with can't seem to get passed chapter two or three.

Whenever a writer tells me they can't finish a project, the first question I ask is, "Did you do an outline?"

And the typical response is a sour look with a defeated sigh, "No."

The very word "outline" sounds daunting and very un-creative, but in my experience the outline is the pinnacle of the creative process. This is where it all begins - the hero's journey. You get to design an entire road trip for your main character to travel, and you can go anywhere in the universe.

My next question is, "Would you go somewhere you've never been without a map, directions, or a navigation system?"

Of course not, because you'd never get there - or you might, but it could take a lot longer and you might end up in some dodgy places.

The outline serves as a road map to get the writer and the main character from point a to point b - all the way to the last point, or rather the end of the story. When you have a solid set of directions it's not as scary to wander off the trail and explore new avenues, you might find a cool twist you never thought of before, and then you can jump back on the path and continue the journey. Outlines aren't written in stone, and remember even Moses broke the first set of commandments.

The heroes I love are brave, confident and show great foresight. Their confidence shines through the pages because they know where they're going.

There are several approaches and suggestions to story mapping, but the one that works best for me is Ken Vogler's The Writer's Journey. He breakdowns Joseph Campbell's tried and true "The Hero with a Thousand Faces" and explains in a simple way what makes a story work and how to take your main character through each phase of the journey. It doesn't feel like an outline, it feels creative and fun.

Writing the words "The End" is the most wonderful moment in any writer's journey.

Keep writing. It saves lives.

January 5, 2014

We did it steampunk

After seven years, Peter and I made it official and tied the knot. 

We met through friends on myspace and he became an avid follower of my blog. He left the most interesting comments and I had to meet him in person. After our third date we changed our myspace status to "in a relationship" and it stayed that way until we canceled our accounts.

We've collaborated on many projects and miraculously we've stayed happily together. He's a huge inspiration and the brains behind the operation; I just show up and neurotically get 'er done. 

Some pics from the big day - January 3, 2014.

Keep writing. It saves lives.