I write stuff for kids...and muse on writing, children's books, and the publishing industry in general

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Insider Scoop - Interview with Rachel Morgan, Aspiring Author

Welcome to The Insider Scoop, where I’ll be bringing you interviews, useful tips and tricks, and all sorts of insightful information from those deep within the children's book industry.

Today, I'm interviewing Rachel Morgan of Rachel Morgan Writes, aspiring author, fellow Crusader, winner of my First Crusader Challenge, blogger extraordinaire, and all-round lovely person!!!

Can't wait to see what Rachel has to say about herself, her writing, and other interesting matters.

To jump straight in...

Question 1: If you had to describe yourself in five words, what would they be?
  • Perfectionist (I write a blog post, comb through the whole thing for errors, hit publish, check it again, see a tiny typo, go back and edit it out. Yes. It’s tedious.)
  • Self-disciplined (I must be, or why the heck else would I keep getting up at crazy-early hours just to write?!)
  • Shy (in real life, anyway!)
  • Creative (I love playing musical instruments and making crafty things...)
  • Weird (that was tech-minded boyfriend’s contribution! Actually, his five words to describe me were: a-pain-in-my-bum. He he he...)
Question 2: When did you start writing?

At age five. Well, technically, I dictated to my mother (since my actual physical writing ability wasn’t so great at that age), but I did the illustrations and the story was my own! I think I actually still have that little book... *climbs into top of cupboard and scratches around for a while*

Anyway, I’ve always had stories in my head and I spent years writing ideas down on scraps of paper and bits of tissue and on the back of school notes. Wish I knew where all those scraps got to!

Question 3: When did you decide to start writing seriously? And how do you keep yourself motivated?

I was doing a Masters in Biochemistry and had one of those light bulb moments: “You know you’re not happy here. You know you really want to write. So, hello?? What’s stopping you? Get out of here and do it already!”

And I suppose what keeps me motivated is that I really, really, really want this to work out and that—bonus—I really enjoy it too!

Question 4: Are you a plotter or a pantzer?

It’s generally a specific scene that sparks an idea for a story, so I like to jump right in and write the scene before I forget it. Then I’ll do a bit of planning—just the major points—but any serious plotting usually gets interrupted by my impatience to just get to the story! And I don’t always write in order. If a scene from three quarters of the way into the story pops into my head, well then it has to be written right then.

Question 5: Which is more important to you, a great plotline or fantastic technical writing?

Your writing can be as fantastically and technically brilliant as the greatest writers in history, but if you haven’t got a good story to tell, no one’s gonna keep reading (unless it’s a school set work your teacher forced upon you... And even then, well, who actually reads the whole thing?!). So I guess I’m going for a great plotline!

Question 6: Tell us about your current WIP.

Main character wakes up believing she is someone entirely different from who she actually is. She runs away from her (now very confused) brother who keeps telling her she’s delusional, and lands herself in great deal of trouble. After figuring out that all her memories are indeed false and that the life she thinks she had never even existed, she sets off to find out who she really is and what could be so important that someone had to hide it in her mind.

It’s of the YA variety (adults can be so boring sometimes!). It’s set in a world where magic exists and people know about it (where’s the fun in sticking to reality?). There’s mystery, adventure, action and, of course, love!

Question 7: If you could be published in any genre, which would you choose?

YA Fantasy. (Um, I think... Does that sound like it fits what I just described?!)

Question 8: Lastly, chocolate or cupcakes?

Um... A cupcake with chocolate in it? Come on, that’s a tough one!


Thanks Rachel for taking the time to be interviewed today (how cute are the piks of her first book!). Make sure you all pop over to her blog and say hi (and don't forget to follow along, she's only a few followers off 100, woot!)

Hope to see you back next week when I interview Hart Johnson of the hilariously naked Confessions of a Watery Tart.


Grandpa said...

Hi Rach, thanks for this piece - great interview. As a newcomer to the scene I want to get to know everyone a bit better. Rachel is such a nice person and talented writer, even as a child.

I get insights on how a writer thinks, too. Thanks

Marieke said...

Great interview! Loved it! :)

Melissa said...

This is an excellent interview, I love the picture book from her childhood - it's so sweet!

Adina West said...

Rachel, it seems, lives up to the old maxim; you're never too young to start!

Thanks Rach for the interview - and nice to get to know you better, Rachel.


Unknown said...

Thanks for sharing! I love the interview! I love learning more about the "how people write" aspect. You said "And I don’t always write in order." And this! THIS! is me exactly! I thought I was the only one! Thank you thank you!

Megan K. Bickel said...

Wonderful interview! I really enjoyed getting to know Rachel better!!

Regina said...

Thank you for a great interview and helping us get to know Rachel better.

Mary Mary said...

Good interview, but I'll tell you, that chocolate or cupcake one is probably the most difficult I've ever come across ;) !

Rachael Harrie said...

Hi everyone, thanks so much for your comments :) I had a great time interviewing Rachel, and I loved her pikkies of her first book - how amazing she's kept them all this time!

@Grandpa and @LadyJai, so glad you picked up some writing tips too :)

@Mary Mary, yep, that's the trick question I'm throwing in. Must say, most people seem to want to combine the two!!!

Can't wait to interview my next victim...ah, aspiring writer...for The Insider Scoop.


Groom said...

Thanks for sharing! I love the interview! I love learning more about the "how people write" aspect. You said "And I don’t always write in order." And this! THIS! is me exactly! I thought I was the only one! Thank you thank you!

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