Explain your writing process and the importance of character motivation.
First, thank you very much for hosting me here today.
My writing process always begins with a seed, an idea, something from real life that gets me thinking. For my piece in the anthology, titled The Well, my process began with a question: What if Jill pushed her brother Jack down the hill? Boy did that get my mind whirring. However, ideas also come from things I overhear or see, taste or touch. Even smells have given me writing seeds.
I typically let the idea percolate in my mind for a while, always simmering in the background, taking shape. When I think I know what the main premise might be, I turn to either a journal or computer and do a brain-dump. I bullet point every idea that comes to mind until I have a few pages of character traits, scenes, etc. Then I walk away from it again so it can sit and grow.
When scenes or tidbits of dialogue start invading my everyday thoughts, interrupting me, then I know it’s time to roll my sleeves up and start writing. It usually takes me about two months to bang out a first draft. Then the work begins—revision.
Revising is the perfect place to address character motivation. Are the people I’ve created acting and doing and saying things true to themselves - the character I’ve created? That is a major part of my revision process, making sure my characters are real and doing/saying authentic things, and it’s not me talking.
When I take the time to really get to know my characters, then their motivations throughout my plot feel natural. Revising helps to flesh all of that out. Revision is where I realized Dell, my main character in EMPTY, needed more motivation for some of the situations I had put her in. I had to be sure Dell was as real to the reader as she was inside of my head. She deserved that.
Whatever your writing process, whatever your revision process, always let your characters be true to themselves. Honesty in writing wins every time.
-K. M. Walton
TWO AND TWENTY DARK TALES: DARK RETELLINGS OF MOTHER GOOSE RHYMES. THIS AIN’T YOUR TODDLER’S MOTHER GOOSE BOOK!
Fairy tales sung sweetly can take us back to childhood, but just beneath those same sweet tales, is a hint of something dark…
Month9Books, a new publisher of speculative fiction for teens and tweens launches in October 2012, with the release of TWO AND TWENTY DARK TALES: DARK RETELLINGS OF MOTHER GOOSE RHYMES. This unique collaboration’s proceeds (from the first 5,000 copies sold) will be donated to YALITCHAT.ORG, an organization that fosters the advancement, reading, writing and acceptance of young adult literature worldwide. TWO AND TWENTY DARK TALES: DARK RETELLINGS OF MOTHER GOOSE RHYMES features some of today’s most admired young adult authors, including: Michelle Zink, Lisa Mantchev, Sarwat Chadda, Nina Berry, Leigh Fallon, Suzanne Young, C. Lee McKenzie, Angie Frazier, Jessie Harrell, Gretchen McNeil, KM Walton, Heidi R. Kling, Nancy Holder, Karen Mahoney, Suzanne Lazear, Pamela van Hylckama Vlieg, Shannon Delany with Max Scialdone, Leah Cypess, Sayantani DasGupta, and Georgia McBride, founder of Month9Books. Francisco X. Stork, author of the critically acclaimed MARCELLO IN THE REAL WORLD, provides a foreword that is nearly as riveting as the stories themselves.
When asked why they wanted to be a part of TWO AND TWENTY DARK TALES: DARK RETELLINGS of MOTHER GOOSE RHYMES, the authors had a lot to say!
“I'm so excited to be working on Month9Books's epic anthology. I've been a Tudor© nerd since before the Tudors© were cool, and this nursery rhyme is about the accession of the Scottish king, James VI, to the English throne (as James I.)” -- New York Times Bestselling author, Nancy Holder
"As soon as I heard the anthology's theme, I knew there was no stopping me! I love anything to do with folklore, so immediately latched onto 'One for Sorrow' as my story's basis. I've wanted to write a crow story for a long time, and this was the perfect excuse!" -- Karen Mahoney, author of The Iron Witch and The Wood Queen, Flux Books.
Month 9 Books is a publisher of speculative fiction for teens and tweens… where nothing is as it seems. Month9Books will donate proceeds from each of its annual charity anthologies to a deserving charity. Individually, authors may donate his or her advances and royalties to a charitable organization. Month9Books will also release 10-12 non-charitable titles annually. TWO AND TWENTY DARK TALES: DARK RETELLINGS OF MOTHER GOOSE RHYMES is Month9Books’s first release. Month9Books is distributed by Small Press United, a division of IPG. You may visitwww.month9books.com for more information.
One lucky reader will win an ecopy of K.M. Walton's CRACKED!
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