Welcome to Author Interview Thursday hosted by the Never Too Old for YA and NA Books group on Goodreads.
Today we welcome Erin Bowman!
Welcome Erin! Take it away...
How long does it take you to write a book from start to finish?
It depends on the novel, but I can usually write a first draft in about three months. (Revising and polishing it so it resembles something I’m willing to share is another story ;) )
How do you come up with themes for your stories?
When I sit down to write a new book, I never do so with the intention of communicating a specific theme. It’s usually a character who drives my stories, or a ‘what if’ scenario. I’ve found that the theme of each book—whatever it happens to be--often reveals itself in the process of writing, and then I can expand upon and strengthen that message during revisions. It’s sort of an organic process.
Do you have a schedule of when you write?
When I’m drafting a book for the very first time, I try to write every single day, even if it is only a couple hundred words. Once I’m revising, the same is true—Polish at least one scene every day. My schedule is pretty dependent on my deadlines. If I have one, I’m doing writing-related tasks nonstop. If I don’t, I devote more time to other business-y things (answer emails, updating social media, blogging, promotion, etc).
What elements do you think make a great story line?
I’m a sucker for action/adventure stories where survival is a daily battle. A bit of mystery thrown in is icing on the cake.
What was the hardest thing about writing a book?
Avoiding the internet. Seriously. Once I turn off my wifi it’s amazing how much I can get done.
Where do you write?
Anywhere and everywhere: My office, the couch, a local coffee shop. I tend to do my best drafting in a comfy place though, with my headphones on. For revisions, I need to be at my desk.
Have you gotten feedback from family about your book(s)? What do they think?
As far as I know, they all love it, which is great. I don’t think I’d want to know if they hated it. ;)
What kinds of things do you like to do outside of writing?
Before becoming an author, I was a web designer, and art is still a big outlet for me. I’m a huge fan of good typography and clever design. I also enjoy hiking, camping, and of course, reading.
What kinds of advice would you give to someone who wants to start writing?
Read. You can’t be a writer unless you’re a reader, so read constantly. Also, write constantly. It’s a craft, and like any artist, you only get better when you hone it.
Are you working on anything now?
Yes! I have a YA historical fiction stand-alone coming out in the fall of 2015 with HMH called VENGEANCE ROAD. It’s set in 1877 Arizona and follows a girl who sets out to avenge her father’s death, only to find herself entangled in a bloody quest for lost gold in the Superstition Mountains. The first draft is due to my editor in early July, so I’m hard at work! It’s completely different from the TAKEN trilogy, but I’m having an absolute blast writing it.
Thanks so much for being here today, Erin. It was great to have you!