I've been a "story girl" all my life. Some of my earliest memories are telling silly little stories. My mum used to write them down for me as I told them, and when I was really little, I drew picture stories. I told them everywhere, in the car, to myself in bed, even in the shower! The world of my imagination was a vast…amazing…unexplored place that I loved playing in.
How old are you?
I am almost 19. Wow I’m old!
How long have you been writing?
Hm…that depends. I have been telling stories ALL my life, I have been writing them down since I was about nine or ten. They actually started being GOOD when I was thirteen. =P
What kind of writing is your favourite (poetry, short stories, novels) and why?
I prefer to write novels. (Well, I’ve written one complete one…so I don’t know if I should say novels…plural.) but I have tried writing short stories, and I have a hard time cramming everything into a shorter storyline. And poetry…well…I’m not good at writing that. Or reading it…really.
Which were you first, a reader or a writer?
I’ve been surrounded by books since I was a baby. My Mum always read to me, and I started telling stories when I was really little. So if that counts, I’ve been a story girl my whole life.
What do you love about writing?
Writing is a release for me. I think without writing, I would literally go insane. Writing is how I release emotions, and I think all the characters in my head would drive me nuts if I didn’t give them an outlet. Writing transports me to other worlds…and the cool thing is that they are worlds that I create myself! Anything is possible with writing.
Do you often find yourself struggling with the dreaded writer’s block? How do you deal with it?
Yes, ALL THE TIME. It mainly happens when I decide that I need to write, or edit, and I sit down, cue up the computer, and settle in to write a chapter. Then BAM…all sense of the English language leaves my brain. I don’t know if there is a formula to deal with it…if there is, PLEASE TELL ME…someone once told me to eat crunchy veggies, like cucumber. Well…doesn’t work for me. Believe me, I tried it. I listen to music. Instrumental is the best, although sometimes lyrics help. I listen to music, and write the scenes that I see playing out in my head. That usually works.
Have you ever had any of your writing published?
I had a letter to the editor published when I was twelve, and I have written some articles for an organization that published them in their e-newsletter. Not exactly the kind of writing I would like to write, but it’s a start!
Is it easy or hard to share your work with others?
Very hard for me. I am an absolute perfectionist, and I hate it when I miss the mark in anything. I am also my worst critic…my absolute worst critic. I generally make my writing out to be worse than it is, (or is it?!) and I don’t take compliments about it well…which is kind of backwards, I guess. But I have learned that in the long run, many editors are better than one…even if it’s me. =P Especially if it’s me!
What’s your biggest fear when it comes to your writing?
What is your favourite writing quote?
Either “Convince yourself that you are working with pen and paper, not with eternal bronze. Let that first sentence be as stupid as it wishes” or “Writing is the socially accepted form of schizophrenia”
Why did you start writing?
I started writing because I needed an outlet for all the daydreams in my head, and once I started, I couldn’t stop. The stories just kept coming, and coming, and coming, and coming, you get the idea. It was addicting, in a good way.
Have you ever considered the idea of putting down your pencil for good?
Once, when I finished my first novel, and then re-read it…and saw how rough it was. Then I went to sleep, woke up the next morning, and a new character walked up and introduced herself, and off I went again. I haven’t considered it since.
Where is your favourite place to write?
In my room. Or outside. But I have to write on a computer because at least when I type my hands can keep up to my brain.
Do you let people read your rough drafts, or only the polished final copy?
I let some people read my rough drafts, but as few people as possible, because I am very possessive of my…*cough*rough*cough* work.
If you had to give a beginning writer one piece of advice, what would it be?
It’s going to be hard, and you’re going to hate your writing when you’re done. But always remember that it is never as bad as you think it is, and you are a writer. It will get easier, and YOU CAN DO IT.
(and...I think...this is the last interview! If I told you I'd publish yours and I haven't yet, just leave me a comment or send me a quick email, and I'll do that next Friday. ☺ But to my knowledge, Mackenzie's interview is the last in the series. I hope you guys have enjoyed reading them as much as I've liked putting them together!)