Wednesday, April 1, 2015

My Favorite 7 Things

by Holly West

Before I begin today's post, I'd like to direct your attention to Keith Rawson's recent LitReactor article: Why The F*ck Aren't You Reading Eric Beetner? Indeed, why aren't you? 

Now, on to the post:

If you're friends with crime fiction writers on Facebook, then you might've seen a recent meme in which writers are tagged to reveal seven things about their writing. Sometimes I find memes like this tedious but this one has been interesting--maybe because instead of having to answer a pre-established set of questions, we're able to say whatever we choose to.

Anyway, here are a seven of my favorites, as posted by my author friends on Facebook:

1) GO DOWN HARD took so long to sell that when Brash Books publishers Lee Goldberg and Joel Goldman told me they loved it and wanted to publish it, they asked if it had to be a period piece. I have since updated references to such antiquities as "Kinkos" and "flip phones." -- Craig Faustus Buck, author of PSYCHO LOGIC and GO DOWN HARD

2) I wrote the lyrics and sang "Estrogen Overdose" with the rock group Idiot. I sucked but we were friends so who were they to stand in the way of my dreams. The song was about a lad we knew who was taking estrogen to grow breasts. It was glitter days, and all bets were off. -- Josh Stallings, author of ALL THE WILD CHILDREN and the Moses McGuire crime books

3) Sometimes I think I am incapable of writing a happy ending. I got halfway through what was intended to be an erotic romance (meaning - it HAS to have a happy ending) and realized that giving the protagonist two kinds of cancer sort of killed the vibe. -- Renee Pickup, writer, editor-in-chief of Revolt Daily, Books and Booze podcaster, and class facilitator at LitReactor

4) My ultimate goal as a writer is to be so famous I don't ever have to come back to Facebook again. -- Rob Hart, author of NEW YORKED

5) I know what year all my characters are born and I name them accordingly. For example, there are no 45-yr-old Briannas in my stories because nobody born in 1969 was named Brianna. I use the Social Security website to find first names. -- Jen Conley, writer and editor at Shotgun Honey

6) The first draft of anything is for me, because it's usually a mess and only going in the direction of where I want to be. The second draft goes to my wife, the third is usually good to leave the house. -- Alex Segura, author of SILENT CITY

7) My early readers usually end up asking me to be less mean to my characters. I think this is because in the raw version I'm very focused on the grief and anger and destruction that comes from a murder.In the first drafts, all of my characters are in varying degrees of despair at the end of the book, in the second draft I give some of them a break, and by the third most of the characters have a little bit of hope. A reviewer on Amazon knocked me down to four stars for being so mean to Marty. I have never been so delighted to lose a star. -- M.P. Cooley, author of ICE SHEAR

Do you have any deep, dark, writing secrets? Feel free to share them in the comments.