I'm really excited about today because we're doing our first in a series of many 1 question interviews. We'll be doing this about once a month on Go Teen Writers where we ask a group of authors the same question. It'll be something that pertains to writing or the life of a writer.
This month's question has two parts to it:
What to you is the hardest part of writing craft-wise
and what is the hardest part lifestyle/career wise?
From Laurie Alice Eakes:
The most difficult part for me is the first chapter. I don't do much in
the way of rewrites, except for that first chapter.
As far as the most difficult part of the profession--Probably balance.
Because I work at home, I keep thinking I should do the dishes, vacuum
the floor, walk the dog, make my husband a gourmet meal--as if I could
cook a gourmet meal. . .
From Stephanie Grace Whitson:
For me personally it is the first draft, because it's very difficult to put what you know is sub-standard on the screen. The first draft is always in need of editing and change, but if I don't create it I have nothing to work with. Still, it's hard to push past that reluctance to read my own drek.
Writing tends to be a lonely profession. I work at home. It's easy to get distracted without a boss "in the office."
From Betsy St. Amant:
The hardest part of writing craft-wise for me is raising the stakes. I'm the most natural at creating internal conflict among my characters - a "characer driven writer" - but sometimes I really struggle with raising those external stakes and driving the plot forward. I might have created this awesome, in depth, relatable, strong backstory that drives the character forward but....I have no idea what she's actually going to be DOING during the story. haha! That's where my fabulous brainstorming partners come in! ::grin::
The hardest part of the writer's lifestyle for me is time balance. I'm a work-from-home mother of a three-year-old, and I not only have regular book contracts and deadlines to meet, but I freelance for my local newspaper, maintain a part time oil&gas industry job, am list hostess for the ACFW and still am responsible for the majority of my household. Not to mention maintaining the publicity/marketing for my novels such as book signings, blogging, writing monthly columns, etc. My husband is a fireman with a second job and is often working weird hours, so I maintain a constant level of high responsibility. Finding the time and creativity/energy to write is often a challenge under these circumstances, but I'm blessed that God keeps working it out for me. I might be able to be productive on my novel for only 15 minutes a day some days, but somehow I can always make those few minutes count. I'm a firm believer in holy time warps ::wink::
From Roseanna M. White:
The hardest part of writing itself is reining myself in and keeping stories in my targeted word count. I'm verbose--a.k.a long winded, LOL, and tend to let my characters get into far more than they need to.
The hardest part of the lifestyle for me is being content with where I am, when I'm there. It's sometimes a real struggle for me to turn off the I-NEED-to-write thought and do what needs done in real life. And sometimes it's still hard for me not to look at the success of others and wonder when and if I'll get to THAT level. But both require trust that the Lord has put me exactly where I'm supposed to be.
From Gail Gaymer Martin:
earning pacing, how to present the plot—organizing the scenes and relaying information—was more difficult. I’ve mastered that now after writing more than fifty novels, but it was difficult.
Now after having so many published novels, the hardest part of crafting is two-fold. The first is after sending a proposal for a book or a book series to my editors, having them come back with revisions. The second part that is difficult for me is the editors often change the title. The tile is woven throughout the novel, but with the change, it doesn’t work. Sometimes I go in and remove dialogue or narrative to get rid of some of the hints and then try to weave the new title into the story. But that’s a small complaint when I count the joy of being the writer I wanted to be even as a child.
Second part of the question: When I first began to write, I had the leisure of writing at the speed I wanted. I had no deadlines or promotion demands. Becoming a traditionally published novelist changes that. When you accept a contract, you also provide the date the novel will be completed. This means it will be on their desk on that date. Often I must stop work on the current book to address the line edits, copy edits and galley (final) edits of a manuscript. I re-read the novel and approve changes they have made or make the changes they ask me to handle. While I’m working on edits on one book and writing another, I sometimes have another book being released to stores. The work is unending. Novelists must learn to sacrifice things in their lives to provide the time to be the novelist they want to be. Is it worth it? Yes, I have been very blessed. Reader mail and emails, reviews and speaking to readers touches my heart when I learn that the book has been a blessing to them.
What about YOU? What obstacles have been most difficult for you to overcome?