(another friend of mine - who likes to be known as beecheerful on the internet - will be popping by next week to answer a few questions using lots of caps lock and even a few emoticons, so pretty please check back on Friday and put smiles on both our faces. ☺)
Friday, July 5, 2013
teen writer interview - Keira
Keira C. Havens
is a storyteller who has been homeschooled her entire life. When she isn't writing, she is daydreaming about writing, talking to her friends about writing, or reading whatever new book she found (or old book that she's read a thousand times but cannot read too often).
How long have you been writing?
At least ten years, I don't remember the exact date I started.
What kind of writing is your favorite and why?
Novels, specifically those in the fantasy adventure genre. Why? Because I like adventure stories. It's not really one of those things you can explain. A natural preference, I suppose.
What is your favorite genre of book to read? Why?
Fantasy adventure. Lord of the Rings is my favorite work of fiction ever written. Why? Because I love the worlds, I love the adventure of diving into a new place and seeing through the characters eyes. I guess it might have something to do with The Horse and His Boy being the first adventure novel I ever read on my own, and I fell in love with it.
What book/book series has been most influential to you as a writer?
Lord of the Rings, probably. It is my ultimate standard for … well, everything. Character, scale, plot … everything. Harry Potter, also, for current literature. It is brilliant storytelling and style.
What's your biggest fear when it comes to your writing?
That I'll let down my readers. There's this book series that I absolutely loved, right up until directly after the final showdown with the villain in the last book. The author handled the showdown perfectly, but then he made some choices with the characters that I believe to be mistakes. Up to that point, it was on my list of favorites, but then it just dive bombed. I don't want to disappoint my readers like that.
Do you have a goal or a purpose that you try to reach when you write? Is there a message that you want your readers to come away with, or some way that you try to encourage them?
Tell the story and make the reader smile at least once while you're doing it. That's my general goal. I try to make my characters as relate-able as possible. Give them real lives and real thoughts, and show them fighting for what they really believe or really love. There's a lot of darkness in our world, right? I like to show people fighting against it, even if they aren't actually in our world.
The best piece of advice someone ever gave you was-
Know your characters. Learn everything you possibly can about them, even if it isn't going to end up in the book. (Their favorite color, their first memory, their least favorite food, whatever.)
Is there a book or article or website that has been particularly helpful in your growth as a writer?
One Year Adventure Novel. If you're reading Olivia's blog, you've probably heard of it before. It is hands down the greatest resource I know of. I cannot give it enough praise.
Do you often find yourself dealing with the dreaded writer's block? How do you deal with it?
Absolutely! When I get stuck, I either drop the story temporarily and shift to another one (which usually leads me in a circle after a few days) or I talk to someone. A sibling, a parent, a friend … or myself. I just talk about the situation, and the characters and what the problem is. Most of the time, I find the solution in the characters themselves.
Do you have a “writing buddy”? If so, when do you meet and how do you encourage each other?
Usually my best friend. Whenever we talk, we discuss story ideas and characters and novel updates. Bouncing ideas and bugging each other to 'please oh please let me read the next five pages!', that sort of thing.
I've got another one for this summer, though, once she's done with school. We decided that our job will be to make sure the other one meets her writing goals by threat of 'drabbles'. If one of us fails to meet our writing goals, the other will come up with a punishment sentence that the other must use in a drabble. But we're really good friends so I don't think we'll be too hard on each other.
If you had to give a beginning writer one piece of advice, what would it be?
Don't stress yourself out to get everything perfect, just tell your story.