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mrockwell
mrockwell
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ME
Marsheila (Marcy) Rockwell is an author, engineer, and mother of three wonderful sons. She has been nominated for the Scribe, Rhysling, and Dwarf Stars Awards and is a member of the SFWA, IAMTW, SinC, and SFPA. She also served for several years as an editor for Mindflights. Her latest published novel is SKEIN OF SHADOWS (2012), a sequel to 2011's THE SHARD AXE, published by Wizards of the Coast. Wizards also published her first novel, LEGACY OF WOLVES, in 2007.

April 2017
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mrockwell [userpic]
WRITING PROCESS BLOG TOUR

Writing

First, before we get to the writing process stuff, don't forget that you only have a little over a week left to enter the Crossing the Streams contest. FREE BOOKS from nearly twenty authors! How can you pass that up? The correct answer is that you can't, so get those entries in!

Also, don't forget to come see me and my super-talented writing partner Jeff Mariotte (and tons of other amazing authors) at Tucson Festival of Books this coming Saturday and Sunday (March 15th and 16th). We'll be in booths 107 - 109 and 118 - 120. (Well, in one of those - not sure which one just yet, but they're all together, so if you find them, you'll find us.)

Okay, on to the tour...

I was invited to take part in this blog tour by funny girl, Gini Koch, who writes the fast, fresh, and funny Alien/Katherine "Kitty" Katt series, as well as lots of others. She's made the most of multiple personality disorder by writing under a variety of pen names, including G.J. Koch, Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, A.E. Stanton, and J.C. Koch. Buy her books - her meds don't come free, you know.

For this one, we're asked to answer the following questions and then tag three other authors to do the same in a week:

1) What are you working on?
2) How does your work differ from others of its genre?
3) Why do you write what you do?
4) How does your writing process work?

So, here goes:

1) I'm currently working on three things. One is the second book in that contracted trilogy I'm writing based on a comic-book property created by one of the biggest names in fantasy. Unfortunately, I'm still bound by my NDA and can't tell you any more than that. (Trust me, no one is more frustrated by that fact than I am.)

The second is my series about a female FBI profiler who is tasked with tracking down a killer she let go free...1,500 years ago. My agent's currently shopping that one and we both have high hopes for it.

And the last project is a novel and related multi-media stories I'm developing with my aforementioned super-talented writing partner, Jeff Mariotte. That one has it all...serial killers, the NSA, a meteor strike, and maybe even the end of the world. Fun stuff!

2) Most of my work is dark and twisty, but still (generally) hopeful, and it usually carries at least a hint of romance. Since I'm also a poet, my work tends to be more lyrical than you usually see in gritty urban fantasy/fantasy noir (for example) – I enjoy using striking metaphors and unusual word choices to evoke images in a way that readers might not be expecting.

I'm also not afraid to kill off main characters who readers have become invested in. I wouldn't call myself a female GRRM (though others have), but I think readers can't really buy into a threat to a character unless there is a real chance that character might not survive (or might lose something terribly important to them). I want the reader to be as worried as the character is. Or, you know, more so.

3) I write what I like to read. I enjoy beautiful language married to dark stories that are both poignant and action-packed. I don't see too many of those on the shelf, though, so I try to write them myself. Just in case there are readers out there with the same unusual tastes I have, heh. (There have to be, right?)

In a broader sense, I gravitate towards fantasy because I believe magic exists in the world – in the miracle of life, in the beauty of a sunrise or a mountain valley or a forest stream or a desert vista, in the power and endurance of love. Writing fantasy allows me to touch that magic, to bring it to the fore in ways that I hope will help readers discover and appreciate its traces in their own lives.

4) My process really begins with a detailed outline. I need to have that roadmap to start writing, to know my destination and the general path I want to take to get there, and some stops I want to make along the way. Having an outline doesn't mean I'm chained to that path – if I find a better, more scenic route, or if there's construction or a twenty-car pileup blocking the way, then I'm free to deviate from the map whenever I need to. But I can't start without it – I even outline poems these days, which seems counterintuitive to some people, but it's what works for me.

I also tend to be a very immersive writer. I do a lot of world-building and research and just thinking about my story before I ever (figuratively) set pen to paper. I need to feel my way into a story or a setting, to feel like I know it as well as I do my own neighborhood, that it's that real. Which sometimes makes it very difficult for me to switch back and forth between projects, because it takes time to get that immersed, and then to climb back out of that immersion again. Which is also why I'll probably never be one of those people who is able to write several novels in a year. I've done it, written novels in six months or less, but it's not how I prefer to work, given my druthers.

One of the benefits of the way I write, though (aside from, hopefully, giving readers a story that they can immerse themselves in), is that my first drafts are very clean and I seldom need more than one light revision pass after my editor has seen it. So there's more work on the front end of the process the way I do it, but less on the back end. Plus it keeps my editors happy, because it means less work for them. And I'm all about keeping my editors happy. And, hopefully, my readers, too.

My tagees:

Christopher Baldwin was born in Massachusetts, and started drawing comic strips around age 5, comic books around age 12. He writes and draws for MAD Magazine, illustrates children's books, and self-publishes webcomics. His graphic novel, LITTLE DEE (based on his online comic), is forthcoming from Dial Books for Young Readers.

Erin M. Hartshorn is a desert rat (native Nevadan) transplanted to a humid climate. She is a moderator at Forward Motion for Writers (an online writers community), a member of Garden State Speculative Fiction Writers, and a member of SFWA. Her fiction has appeared both online and in print in various places, placed in the PARSEC short story contest, earned honorable mentions and semifinal status in the Writers of the Future contest, and been shortlisted for the UPC Award for science-fiction novellas. She also publishes mysteries under the pen name Sara Penhallow; her most recent release is THE MINIATURE GOLF COURSE MURDERS. She blogs online at www.erinmhartshorn.com/blog and can be found on Twitter @ErinMHartshorn.

M.H. Van Keuren quit a perfectly good job to devote his life to writing science fiction. He lives in Billings, Montana, with his wife and two sons. [MY NOTE: I went to high school with his lovely wife, who was a fellow National Merit Scholar.]

Everything Else

I think this post is quite long enough, don't you? Heh.

#SFWApro