Monday, March 22, 2010

A Novice To Watch: Meet Stephanie L. McGee!!!!

Well, Hi-Dee-Oh!!

It's Monday and I've got another Novice YOU need to be keepin' eye on!

I'd like to introduce the dazzling Stephanie L. McGee!

I stumbled upon Stephanie's blog, Chronicles of a Novice Writer quite by accident and I must say I'm so very glad I did. I've been following her journey to publication for a couple months now and really enjoy reading her posts on writing and craft.

She's definitely on her 'A' game, because even with a busy school schedule and WIP's screaming for her attention, she still manages to get a post out every day! I'm completely and utterly jealous!

Please, pop on over to her blog sometime and scope out what she has to say. In meantime, I hope you enjoy meeting my friend, Stephanie!

1)If you were a book, what would your blurb be?

Hopeless romantic Stephanie McGee has lived life wondering if her prince charming will ever come.

Then one day he did. Only, he wasn’t exactly what she expected. Now, she spends her days daydreaming about the fictional hero that came to her in that almost-asleep state.

She writes his story in hopes that one day the world will read it and she’ll no longer have to share her secret love with only herself and a very select few.

But will this writerly love overshadow the hope and promise of a real-life hero? Will she find the balance between the writing career she wants, the career she needs to be in to support herself and her book habit, and this elusive and illusory thing known as a social life?

2)Using three words, describe your voice.

Unknown, mystery, confusing

3)What genre(s)do you write? Which published author would you compare your writing to?

My first book was romance, my second was YA fantasy. I’m all over the board. My short stories have been romances but my current ideas are everywhere. There’s another fantasy idea, a paranormal/urban fantasy, and an adventure novel. I began a genre series last week on my blog in an effort to really try to figure out “my” genre. For now I’m content to follow the muse wherever she leads me.

As for comparing myself to other authors, I think there’s definitely a little window for comparison to Tolkien. No, I’m not as phenomenal as he is. But I do like a large cast of characters. My last project started out with an ensemble cast of 10. Each had their own role to play in the storyline of the trilogy.

Other authors? I’ve definitely been influenced by Tamora Pierce, maybe Jane Austen, David Eddings, and a few others that I can’t think of right now.

4)Give us the 'deets' on your WIP. What are your goals for this project?

I recently shelved a project that had (finally) reached the revision stage. This project began 8 years ago when I was in high school still. I’d abandoned it for about 2-3 years when I felt it was too derivative of other books I’d read. Then one day I had a flash of inspiration that saved the novel. I started again on it last summer and finished in February.

Now I’m moving on to a paranormal/urban idea that hit me last September. I’ve just re-plotted it and will try to salvage as much of the 12,000 words I’d already written. I think this book will be stronger for having this new set of plot. There are more sub-plots but they’re not there to fill word count. They’re important and will really help to make the book pull together into a cohesive whole.

My approximate word count goal for this is around 75,000 words.

At the same time I’m researching for an adventure idea that came to me as part of a really wacky dream I had a couple of weeks ago. I won’t say too much more because I definitely don’t want to bore your readers with rambling on and on.

I’ll probably aim for around 70,000-75,000 words on this one as well. My first project was 90,000 words and that was difficult to reach at times.(Despite ending draft 1.5 at around 94,000 words.)

I will say this: I do hope that someday, maybe 10 novels from now, I’ll get published. If I get published with novel number 12 and whoever my agent is wants to try to sell one of these early novels, of course I’ll be thrilled.(I’d be over the moon if one of these two projects I’m juggling right now was the one that got me an agent and a book deal.) But right now my goals for these two is to get the scaffolding done so I can start throwing the paint on the walls.

5)In your opinion, what should every novice writer know when making the decision to embark on the journey to publication?

It’s not easy and it will be long. Don’t expect to sit at the computer and write an entire novel in one day. It will take time. Even if you do get that novel done fast, there will likely be many revisions in your future. And most importantly, keep writing. A story here will, I think, help.

Three and a half years ago I had the opportunity to attend a book signing in New York. The author was Jasper Fforde, a man whom I admire greatly for his creativity and vast sense of humor. As he signed my book, I asked him if he ever felt like what he was writing was utter crap and had been done so much better by others. I fully expected this amazing person to say no and think I was crazy for asking such an insipid question.

He said yes. He also said that it’s what makes him keep going and keep pushing himself.

This was a revelation to me. And it kept me going. Because one day I do hope to meet him again, this time as a published author, and I want to be able to say that I didn’t give up on myself and my writing just because one piece may have been less than publishable.

6)What's been your biggest obstacle to overcome with your writing?

Accepting the fact that it’s not going to be Pulitzer-worthy on the first draft. That, and getting to the finished first draft. And revising. Because, really, I’ve never revised a full manuscript and it’s intimidating.

7)What are some of your future aspirations?

I want to survive school, write a killer novel (or three...hundred), get married, have a family, raise them in the ways of God to live good, uplifting lives, and die with a smile on my face knowing I’d fought the good fight. If that fight never includes getting published but I can still smile knowing I tried, then I can die with that smile and meet God with a light heart and return His talents to Him a hundredfold.

Thanks for having me here, Sarah! Good luck with all your writing!

No, thank you, Stephanie, for all you do for your fellow writers. Your posts are very inspirational! I'm keeping all my fingers and toes crossed for tons of future success!
If you'd like more information on Stephanie L. McGee, please click on over to her blog, Chronicles of a Novice Writer.

Thank you, TLN'ers, for stopping by!! Better keep a close watch on our gal, Stephanie! She's destined to make it big one day. I just know it!

To help set the mood for your Moan-day, here's a classic
TANYA TUCKER ditty, TEXAS WHEN I DIE! Don't worry, we won't watch, go ahead and shake your bon-bon! Ain't nothing like a good ole cowboy lovin' song to get your day started right!


Jill said...

Great interview - fun tone. Sounds like there are some good works in progress. Will keep an eye out...

Micole Black said...

Good morning ladies. Great interview! I wish you both great success in all of your endeavors!



Susan R. Mills said...

Great interview. It was fun to get to know you better, Stephanie.

Helen Hardt said...

Nice to meet you, Stephanie!

Angie said...

Great interview! Thanks to you both.

Sarah Simas said...

Thank you for letting me interview you, Stephanie! It's always fun getting to know fellow writers. :)

Stephanie McGee said...

It was fun! (Even if one question did give me major fits.)

I just hope I didn't scare anyone away from your blog.

It's nice to meet new people. I think I'll be swinging by some blogs later this evening.

Kaye Manro said...

It's good to meet you, Stephanie! May you have meany sales. Good interview as always Sarah.

Dawn Simon said...

Great interview! I already follow Stephanie, but it was fun to read her answers and get to know her better. :)

Best of luck to both of you!

Stephanie McGee said...

Thanks, Kaye! Same to you.

Dawn, thanks for the kind words!