I'm so excited to feature author K. Dawn Byrd today! K. Dawn Byrd is the author of several novels, including Mistaken Identity, Killing Time, and Queen of Hearts. In addition to sharing her wisdom about the writing process, she's also giving away a gift certificate for a free download. Which means this giveaway is not restricted to US residents - yay!
To get yourself entered, leave a comment below either answering Ms. Byrd's question or asking her one of your own. Contest closes Tuesday, June 28th.
From K. Dawn Byrd:
Some writers start with a character. The character enters their mind and they can't rest until they're written their story. Most of my novels start with a plot. Yes, I'm a plotter. For example, in my new young adult romance, the thought entered my mind, "What would happen if a Christian teenager and her non-Christian best friend fell in love with the same guy?" Would the good girl get the guy or would he be attracted to the girl who wore the skimpiest clothes and would do whatever he asked?
I then took it a step further by thinking about the characters. What would the Christian girl be like? What would her best friend be like? I found some character worksheets on-line and filled them out and Eden (the Christian) and Lexi (the non-Christian) were born.
As I filled out the worksheets, I began to wonder what they looked like. To add to the excitement, I made Lexi drop-dead gorgeous and Eden kind of plain. I then began to think about what effect this would have on Eden? Of course, she'd feel like she didn't have a chance because Lexi was popular with the guys and always got her man.
I then began to sketch out scenes by writing topics, such as 1) first meeting, 2) first date, 3) first kiss, etc. You get the picture. I normally write suspense, so I had to throw in a few things to get the plot moving such as an alcoholic mother who ends up in rehab and a classmate who is injured while car surfing.
I'm not the greatest in the world at writing description. Having a photograph to look at helps. For example, I scoured the internet for the perfect prom dress and then wrote about it what it looked like. Sometimes, I'll dig through magazines until I find photos of how my characters look in my mind and then I'll place them on a cork board so I can view at them when I write.
After the story is finished, I put it away for a while and then approach it with a fresh perspective. I usually do this twice and then it goes through two edits at my publishing house.
That's how I write. It's important that you find what works for you and stick with it. What have you found that works for you or what would you like to try?