Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to a fresh new author, Jen Christopherson! Give her a bit of welcome y’all!
Marion: Tell us a bit about yourself!
My mind usually goes blank when someone asks me to talk about myself. However, I have found a few things in my life that are noteworthy.
I remember making up stories for other people when I was very young, maybe around three. I know I was not very tall because everyone around me looked like giants. They towered above me like skyscrapers!
Around fifth grade, the school librarian told me I had read all the books allowed for my grade level. I would have to check books out at the public library.
We did not live close enough to the public library for me to go there alone and my mom was busy with other things, therefore I had to write my own stories. That was when I fell in love with writing!
I have three wonderful children: girl 23, boy 21, boy 17.
I have been told, more than once and by more than one person, that I needed to face reality. I have been accused of having my mind in fantasy land more often than I can count. I have accepted this. My boyfriend is a really sweet and devoted man who says that he will keep me grounded when I get to floating too far into fantasy land. Therefore, I have my head in fantasy land and my feet are held to the ground by my boyfriend!
Del, my boyfriend, tells me I am a middle aged young lady. I like that.
Marion: What’s your best book-related memory? Your worst?
My best book related memory? When I opened the email with the cover to Warrior Crone in it! I could not believe how closely the picture resembled the heart of the story. lol *blush* I have to admit that I squealed! Then, when I opened the file to look at it, I squealed again! lol
Marion: I'm so thrilled that you love your cover! The world needs more happy authors!
My worst book related memory had to be when I had wrote and polished a story on a friends computer, had a publisher waiting on it, and it was deleted from the computer.
Marion: Oh, hell. I've had things like that happen and it makes me want to cry! What was the first book you ever read that really blew your mind, that you couldn’t stop thinking about after you’d finished?
The first book I ever read that blew my mind? One that I couldn't stop thinking about after I had finished it? *bites fingernail* Wow, the first one?!? *thinks and thinks and thinks* I remember falling in love with Anne McCaffery's dragons! I think what I was able to read of that book really took hold of my mind. *blush* Sometimes, I miss her dragons! lol
Marion: How do you start thinking about a book? Is it the characters that first pop to mind, or the setting, or the plot? Where do you usually start?
Honestly, a scene comes to mind with characters already in play. It could be a conversation or an incident, but it is usually one scene that comes to mind. Warrior Crone started out as a story about a girl, Tar-Reesh, and her favorite companion, Winaiva, being kidnapped by Tar-Reesh's family. Though the scene was edited out.
Marion: If you could invite five writers, living or dead, to dinner, who would they be?
Do I have to have five people in my house all at once?!? *looks around in a panic* Oh, my! There's not enough room! I would definitely invite Stephen King, his writing career has become a goal for me. Anne McCaffery so I could gush over her dragons. Melanie Rawn. I love her characters! Piers Anthony because I love his "speed demon" and "butterflies"!!!! Oh! I would have to invite myself because I love Del's cooking and I am an author, too!!!!
Marion: Well, if you don't have the room maybe you could go out and stick the big names with the bill! :-D When was the last time you just had to write, and what inspired that feeling?
The last time I just had to write? That was during the editing of Warrior Crone. *nods* A scene came to mind in which this girl was taking care of a farm house and a boy about her age was coming from the forest to the east. However, her husband was preparing to go to town. She desperately wanted to stay and socialize with the boy, her husbands son, who was coming from the forest. *eye roll* It simply would NOT go away until I wrote it on my computer!
Marion: When you’re writing, what game do you most often play during “breaks”?
I love to play hidden object games. I have gone through most of the hidden object games on JenKat. lol
Marion: Have you ever tried to shake up your writing routine? Writing at a different time? Writing in new places? Writing nude? *waggles eyebrows*
I am one of those writers that doesn't have a routine. :-) I write. Sometimes, I only write in my head. Other times, I write into a recorder. Most of the time, I write on my computer or write notes on odd peices of paper. I found that if I don't write it out, it will clog up my brain and I cannot do anything else until I write it out. :-(
Marion: What is your absolute favorite sentence--just one sentence--from your book? Why?
"Your heart is good and true, trust it." *sigh* I used it several times in Warrior Crone, but I am unsure how many times it made it into the final draft.
Marion: What one scene do you think you spent the most time editing? What was it about it that you couldn’t seem to get right?
The final battle. *groan* I just could not get the pace to match the descriptions. *eye roll* I labored over that one scene for hours and hours!
Marion: What’s your worst writing habit? Something you know you shouldn’t do, but just can’t seem to stop?
When I write, I have a tendancy to forget about everything else. You know, things like: sleeping, working, paying bills, eating, etc...
Marion: What’s the one thing you wish you were good at, but just can’t seem to master?
I wish I could master the writing routine thing. My health would be better, my relationships would be better and my finances would be better! lol
Marion: How do you ‘get into character’? Are their certain characters you find it harder to write than others?
I have not had this problem, yet. I find that the character I am writing about "shows me" what I need when I am writing it. I don't know how to explain it any better than that.
Marion: There are a lot of concepts about what writer are like, what’s the one you hate the most? Like the most?
I hate the concept that a writer is lonely, depressed, or otherwise hiding from the world. I write because I love to write, that is not to say that I don't have friends and loved ones.
I enjoy the fantasy of suddenly making it big and being whisked away for book tours and such!!! lol I know it doesn't happen that way, but I like the fantasy anyway!
The Shack by Wm. Paul Young, William P. Young, Wayne Jacobsen, Brad Cummings
Marion: What project are you currently working on?
I am working on a story with a working title of Living Winter. It is about a group of people who go hunting the Ice Dragon that attacks their village.
Marion: About how long does it take you to get from first draft to polished manuscript? What does that process look like?
If I had to estimate it, I would say about six months. The process is torture for myself and anyone around to see it. I can go from talking about something at work to working on a problem with the book without any lead in.
I say something like: "Yeah, we need to get that load out to Dallas, but I think that Jerkah should be the one to notice they are being followed." *nods* Yes, I get very strange looks!!! lol
Marion: Any parting words?
In closing, let me say: I am amazed and thrilled every time someone says they like what I have written. I don't feel like I am writing most of the time, I feel as if the story is unfolding in my mind and I just type what comes to me. That is not to say there are no mistakes in what I write, some of my writing is so dull I fall asleep while editing it!!!