Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

The Work in Progress (WIP) Game – A Little Meme

Christiana Capotondi as la sposaThere’s a little writing game circling the ‘net for writers to discuss their works in progress. Pati Nagle introduced me to it. When you’re done here, you should go read Pati’s responses.

I hope you enjoy this peek!

Q: What is the working title of your book?

A: Titles are so hard for me to come up with! I struggle. So, like most of my WIPs, this one has no title.

Q: Where did the idea come from for the book?

A: I wanted to write a book about a character that people could relate to – so I started off with the idea that my main character must have some real problems (and Assumpta has more than her fair share – starting with how much she hates her name)!

I still wanted her to have an edge — this finding ability — in order to accomplish great things. I started writing about her problems first — pantsing the plot — and the rest of it just fell together as I wrote.

Q: What genre does your book fall under?

A:Urban fantasy, I think, with a tad of erotica thrown in for spice.

(Erotica: totally not planned. While I was writing, the muse torched the plot line and came up with a love triangle.)

Q: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

A: I pick Italian actress Cristiana Capotondi to play Assumpta. (Doesn’t she look lovely in the movie poster for la peggior settimana della mia vita (The Worst Week of My Life)?) Gerard Butler must play Jak. I think he’s just hunky enough to pull it off. Poor Greg is the third wheel in the love triangle. I’m waffling over actors for this role, but in a pinch I’d choose Matthew McConaughey. He’s almost attractive enough to get the job done, but not quite – just like Greg.

Q: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

A: Nice Catholic girl takes on the devil — and wins — with a little help from a sexed-up fallen angel. (You know where that leads, right?)

Q: Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

A: I’ve got a nibble from an interested press based on the rough draft. If the polished version meets the line’s criteria, I’d publish there in a heartbeat. If not, I’ll self-pub this, ’cause Jak’s too wonderful to keep locked away on my hard drive.

Q: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

A:The book took about a year to write in between full-time work and other writing obligations. (I also lost the manuscript at one point, and had to re-write some major scenes from memory. That set me back about 8 weeks between searching for the manuscript, re-writes and being in a writing funk.)

Q: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

A: Hard to say…maybe something along the lines of Stacia Kane, only not quite as dark.

Q: Who or What inspired you to write this book?

A: Inspiration played no part in this book’s conception. It was more of a challenge. I wanted to see if I could write something set in a “contemporary” setting and enjoy it as well.

Q: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

A: The main character, Assumpta, is a douser. She’s a self-described “finder of things,” and her method is the pendulum. The scenes where she uses one were sometimes difficult to write because the process is cumbersome, and I didn’t want readers feeling bored through them.

And now, here are some other writers playing this game:

Pati Nagle

Patricia Burroughs

Jeffrey A. Carver

Katharine Eliska “Cat” Kimbriel

Steven Harper Piziks

Deborah J. Ross

Edited to add:

Cindie Geddes

Beth Barany

If you want to join the game, answer the questions and then post a response in the comments. I’ll add your link in the body of the text as they come in.

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Latest Manuscript Takes a Surprising Turn

Bugs Bunny on MarsBugs Bunny fans will recognize the phrase, “I knew I shoulda taken that left turn at Albuquerque.”

I’m sitting here saying the same thing as my current manuscript is no longer recognizable: It’s taken a left turn into erotica.

You regulars will know that I write dark fantasy and science fiction. (Those of you who came here after googling “erotica” know that now, too.)

So, it’s as surprising to me (as you) that I’ve written three complete — and soon to be four — scenes in my current manuscript that are so steamy, I had to step outside in the cool air for a minute before I sat down again to finish them. (And nobody’s even had sex yet!)

I was reluctant to release them to my critique partners for their review. (But they enjoyed them — even the men — so that’ll show me to want to hide my work.)

What’s strange to me is that I think the male lead in the erotica section is going to become a major character. At first, he was a walk-on. In the second scene he tempts the book’s main character, not only with the promise of really good sex, but with heart’s desire: healing a demonic wound which will not heal.

I can’t decide if she’ll go all the way with him in this next scene. If she does, she damns her immortal soul. But she’ll be whole again, gain a huge amount of knowledge about something, and have incredible sex all night long.

She just might be tempted. After all, her immortal soul is only lost to her if she dies. There are ways to cleanse it before that happens, right?

Yeah, I’m still working out the sticky bits of the plot. This is what happens when the characters start talking to you and they refuse to play the roles you’ve cast them in.

I can’t wait to see how this turns out.

But I’m curious: as a reader, would you be willing to pick up a book not quite like the last you read by an author, or would you bypass it in favor of something else?