A writerly blog hop thingamabob

On a lighter note….

So, there is this chain letter type thing going around where a writer answers a few questions about their writing then tags two other writers, and they have to do it. I was tagged by my editor. That isn’t really relevant, but I still like saying “my editor.”

#1 What am I working on?

A companion cookbook for my novel “The Trees Beneath Us.” I’m calling it Finnger Licking Good. See, the protagonist is named Finn… I’m also considering a sequel to “Trees”; maybe something more mainstream…The DaFinnci Code?

Really, I am wandering in the scary wasteland that is my mind and trying to find a character I want to live with for the next year or so. I have about thirty first draft pages of a potential novel, but I’m not ready to walk down aisle with it just yet.

#2 How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Well, since my publisher (I also really like saying “my publisher”) said I created the Eco Noir genre, I’d say mine differs because all the others are riding my fucking coattails!

My work generally involves an element of nature and wilderness and the internal struggles of a damaged character. So, compared to Abbey, Stegner, Wordsworth, Craig Childs, Thoreau, etc, my work sucks. I may re-explore that Dafinnci Code angle. Compared to Dan Brown, I’m a fucking literary genius.

#3 Why do I write what I do?

Because I know about being outdoors and I’m seriously fucked up? My friend and excellent writer and favorite target of my ballbusting, Charlie Stella, asked me this a while back. I like happy ever after stories. I like hero saves the day stories. I think there are plenty of those in the world. There are also plenty of anguished, struggling souls in this world and not nearly enough books about their stories. I also think we, as a populace, don’t have an adequate reverence for the beautiful earth where we reside. I hope people will read “Trees” and maybe want to go for a walk in the woods and/or be a little more sympathetic to someone they might know with mental illness.

#4 How does my writing process work?

You know those little magnets with words on them used to create random poetry? I throw a shitload of those at the refrigerator and see if I got lucky.

I don’t plan or map a story arc. I don’t start with the end in mind. I begin with a character. Then, to quote my brilliant professor Merle Drowne, I put that character up a tree and see what happens. I am a reader along for the ride as I write. I don’t know where the character will take me until we arrive. Then, I revise…a lot…I mean really a lot.

I need total silence and no interruptions when I write so I usually write late at night when the house has gone to sleep. I don’t have a regimen although I know I should. I write until I don’t think anything good is coming out…or I get sleepy.

There you go, Rick Ollerman, you bastard. Since I love when my friends suffer with me, I’m tagging my vacation family member, Jerri Clayton and my brother from another mother, Mike Hancock. FYI, Mike’s new novel “Fallen” is out and available. It is a winner.

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