Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
I’m very pleased to be able to share what I learnt in this intriguing interview with author C J Whitley. Read on to find out more about him and his books . . . .
Where did you get the inspiration for the book?
This story started off as an English class assignment when I was about 12, the brief was simply to write a short story. I had a bit of an idea and started writing. What I wrote was not particularly short – I wrote over 10,000 words, while I think the teacher was expecting more like 1000. Unfortunately, it was not really a story either, as it had a beginning and a middle, but I had no clear idea how to end the book. The assignment got abandoned. However, the story continued to develop, purely in my head, for the next ten years. In 2006, at the age of 22 and two days after my final exam at university, I suddenly found myself with a lot of free time. I decided to write a book, this time with an ending in mind.
What is your writing process?
1. Go into a daze when an idea hits me – possibly mid-sentence.
2. Write a single page outline of the basic plot.
3. Post-its! Lots of Post-Its. Each one has a single event in the story, generally equating to a single chapter. The post-its can be rearranged and added to easily as the best order for those events becomes clearer.
4. Start writing.
5. Keep writing.
6. Do some editing.
7. Have a couple of people read it and provide feedback.
8. Do some more editing.
Do you write using pen and paper or on a computer?
Computer, without a second thought. I save it in multiple places. If I wrote with pen on paper, I’d be in constant fear of losing it.
Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
No, I didn’t always want to be a writer. At various stages in life, I’ve wanted to be a pilot, a soldier, an archaeologist, a pirate and an astronaut. I finally decided to be an engineer. And to be honest, I enjoy engineering, so I’m not even sure I could say that I particularly want to be a writer as a full-time job – I think it could be a bit lonely. It suits me as a hobby.
How and why did you choose the names for your main characters?
With this book, the first book I wrote, it was actually less random than for other books I have written. Having made a decision to write a book, I also decided it was about time I learnt to touch-type. So I began learning to touch-type as I began to write the book. Being a learner, I consciously chose names for the two main characters that were quite short and used letters that were among the first keys the typing tutorial taught me. I settled on ‘Mike’ and ‘Kay’.
Many thanks for this brilliant interview – I loved the images showing your writing process, definitely a highly individual process! I look forward to reading and reviewing this awesome sounding book 🙂
Also many apologies for my delay in posting this . . . I scheduled this post for June 17th but then saved it as a draft instead of publishing it – so sorry!!!