Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Elissa Wilds - X-Posted

We’ve got Elissa Wilds in the house today. Woot!!! I’m really excited to have her with us and to be giving away Between Light and Dark (you can read the excerpt on the link) as this months must read.

Waiting for the book to release seemed like forever, and then once I had it in my hot little hands I couldn’t put it down. :)

Needless to say I’m chomping at the bit for Darkness Rising (again, you can read the excerpt by clicking the link).

Okay, if you’re ready, here goes:

Me: How did you get started writing and have you always written paranormal?

Elissa: Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved to read. The library was my favorite place. (now it’s a toss up between the library and bookstores!) I always had my nose in a book. When I was around eight or nine, I started to think about how I would change a particular story I read. Or how I would continue the story if I were the author. So, I began to write stories of my own. When I was a teenager, I penned ongoing sagas with my friends as the main characters. Each week, they’d get another installment and I knew better than to be late, or they’d be very angry with me! Of course, in addition to traveling to exotic locales, meeting famous people, and buying cool stuff, my fictional friends also got to date different guys. I had a ball pairing them up with the hottest guy in school, or making them get back together with their (real life) exes, or even better – hooking them up with the geekiest guy in class. So, romance was part of my writing early on.

And as for paranormal, the first couple books I wrote (now gathering dust under my bed) were not paranormal but straight contemporary romance. It wasn’t until I began to work on my third book that – duh – it occurred to me that what was missing was something magickal. After all, I spent my free time reading either romance or metaphysical non-fiction books. It suddenly dawned on me to combine the two. And now, I don’t have any desire to write anything that doesn’t have a magickal slant!

Me: Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Elissa: I’m more of a plotter. First, I decide the theme of the book. In the Hidden Circle Coven books the theme is a tried and true: good vs. evil – in this case, witches (on Earth) and gods (in the Light Realm) working together to save both mankind and the gods. There is also an ongoing secondary theme having to do with the balance between the light and dark in all living things. Sort of the ying/yang theory. Once I have a theme down, I decide the overarching plot – who are the bad guys, what is their motivation, who are the good guys, their motivation, why are my hero and heroine integral to the fight, what do they bring to the table, etc. I then determine the hero and heroine’s own personal growth arc – what are their strengths, weaknesses, and how are they going to grow as people through the battle - and most importantly, through their relationship with each other. I then determine the major plot points – you know, the inciting incident, the black moment, etc. Now, when your publisher asks for a synopsis, you do have to fill in the blanks a bit more than that. So, I do come up with some ideas for how to get from point a to point b while working the synopsis. However, my final product, aside from the major plot points, does often evolve a bit by the end of the book. I enjoy seeing what happens in each scene, and how my characters reveal themselves to me as I go. I have a general idea of who my characters are when I begin, but their quirks, their personal style and such appear as I write them. For example, in Darkness Rising, I didn’t plan for Aurora to have artistic talent, but she does.

I hear of writers who sell based on an idea alone. In theory, I would love that because it would mean I could already be under contract when I start writing the book, rather than having to go through the proposal process. (My time is limited and I’d much rather be writing under contract always!) However, being forced to pen those first few chapters and a synopsis from the get go has made it easier for me to jump right in to the book and make it happen once I’m on a deadline.

To finish reading the interview click here. This is one interview you don't want to miss a single word of.

I know I've already thanked you Elissa, but thanks again and I can't wait for the next release.

Leave your comments and/or questions over on the other blog post for Elissa. And if you come back and leave a comment here as well there's a little surprise for someone. :) heehee

WW's and PD's,


Anonymous said...

I've read Between Light and dark loved it. I thought it was a very good debut novel. In fact, if you remember I won it from your blog long back :)

Vicki said...

violetcrush - You did!! :) I can't wait for Darkness Rising and the cover is fab.:)It'll be here on the blog.

Becky said...

I read the excerpt for both books and they both sound really good.

Jessica Lee said...

It's wonderful that you're able to interject something that is such a part of you into your work, such as Wiccan. I have to know though, did you really crack a boulder and conjure up a dust devil? :) Come on, spill... LOL

Kytaira said...

I really enjoyed the exerpts of Between Light and Dark and Darkness Rising as well as the extended interview.

The concept sounds really great. I love the idea of a god becoming human and having to *learn* feelings not just know them in the abstract.

Vicki said...

Elissa was answering questions on the group blog, but I'll pass along any from here to her. She's on her way to RT right now so it may be a couple of days.