Monday, July 28, 2014

Writing Process Blog Tour

I'm honored to have been tagged for this writer-ly blog tour! Writers all over the blogosphere have been sharing about their unique approaches to the writing process, and today I'm posting about mine. But first, thank you to Allison Duke from Allie on Life for including me in this! I "met" Allison (@PinkDreamInk) through some fun #1k1hr sprints and #WritersRoad chats on Twitter. :) You can check out her heartfelt post for this tour HERE.

And now, here's a glimpse into my writing process...

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1) What am I working on? 

My primary project right now is Morning Glory (Book 3 in "The Heart's Spring" series; inspirational Western romance). Here's my current back cover copy (subject to tweaking before publication):

http://morningglorynovel.blogspot.com/

The depths of fear. The dawning of hope.

Summer 1887
 Felicity Lute's family is on the run from scandal and sorrow, but their "vacation" isn't bringing Felicity and her sister Helen together the way it should. Hope—or at least distraction—comes in the form of Myghal Tamblyn, a Cornish man wandering the West. When he joins them on their journey to Crater Lake, Felicity begins to believe her heart and her dreams will heal. Just as long as she and her two sisters can keep their secrets hidden.

Myghal has fallen in love—and been forced to let go of love—twice. He's intrigued by the flirtatious and flamboyant Felicity, but he's also wary of the obvious tension in her family, despite their welcome. An adventure with new friends might be just what his lonely heart needs, or it could be the path to a third and final heartbreak.


When tragedy plunges Felicity and Myghal into the very depths of their fears, will they find the strength they need to rise again?

My goal is to have it be around the same length as Forget Me Not, or between the length of Forget Me Not and Bleeding Heart. So...about 40- to 45,000 words, maybe? I call 40K and up a "novel," but some might consider it a novella. ;) I'm currently about 24K words in.

Click to view daily statistics

I did barely start on an entry for the Five Enchanted Roses contest a few weeks ago, but that will have to wait for a while longer. It's titled Arose, and we'll see if it ends up along the lines of my initial brainstorming...

What I really want to focus on after Morning Glory is How a Star Falls, an NA (new adult) contemporary romance. Right now I'm thinking it will be a novella, as my stories tend to run on the shorter end of the word-count spectrum, but a lot is still up in the air. The one thing that's pretty settled, though, is the awesome cover, designed by (you guessed it!) Lena Goldfinch of Stone Lily Design. Interested in helping to reveal the cover early next month? You can sign up at the Seasons of a Story Publishing site!

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

Besides being short? Haha. Well, my work focuses on emotional journeys, so far paralleled by literal journeys my characters also take. I believe my stories are more atmospheric, setting poignant moods and describing the landscapes in such a way as to enhance that. I love nature and I love this western side of the U.S., and I think that shows in my writing. 

3) Why do I write what I do?

I write inspirational because it's who I am, what I believe. I want to impart hope - authentic hope, the kind that lasts even through the storms, the pain, the sorrow, the heartbreak of this life.

I write historical because stories of the past fascinate me, and the challenges and wild beauty of the West intrigue me. Even when I try my hand at contemporary, I hope to continue to convey my passion for the wonderful places I've lived and visited here on the West Coast.

I write romance because I'm an utter romantic at heart. I grew up watching movies and series like Anne of Green Gables and Road to Avonlea with my grandparents and uncle, and reading Christian romance books (starting in elementary school). I adore stories about love surviving and thriving in all sorts of situations and places.

4) How does my writing process work?

To be honest, I haven't completely figured out an actual, lasting method. In a vague sense, my writing process involves daydreaming, music, and the occasional bursts of productivity. I latch onto an idea and ruminate on it at different times, writing down thoughts and any research tidbits I learn in little notebooks. I've started compiling "soundtracks" for my books, and listening to the music or singing the lyrics can help me delve deeper into the emotions of my characters. As far as the stories actually making their way onto paper, well, that happens in fits and starts, when I'm feeling the inspiration or the pressure. Doing writing "sprints" with fellow author friends on Twitter has really been a huge help in motivating me to actually write!

You know, I should also add Pinterest to this list. Pinterest played a really big part in helping me brainstorm the specifics of Morning Glory, and I imagine it will continue to offer inspiration for future projects. Something about gathering visuals and having a "story board" really helps my mind make connections. :)

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Next Monday (August 4th), some other writers are sharing about their own writing processes! Here are the two bloggers I tagged:

Jaye L. Knight is a homeschool graduated indie author with a passion for writing Christian fantasy and clean New Adult fiction. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God's love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin. Visit Jaye at www.jayelknight.blogspot.com.

Meghan Gorecki is a twenty-something living a hundred or so miles from Gettysburg and a hundred or so years from the history that beckons her. So she goes there and elsewhere in heart, and on pages, to fulfill the calling of writer her Lord and Savior has placed on her heart.

Learn more about Meghan and check out her newly redesigned blog (A Northern Belle) at www.justasiam-meghan.com.

8 comments:

Rissi said...

Awesome post - so full of newsy things that I am definitely anticipating from you, Amber.

Your contest story has a gorgeous name (I'm not even thinking about mine yet, LOL!) and I am getting more giddy about your NA project. That reveal will only up the excitement. :)

Good luck!

Amber Stokes said...

Rissi,

I'm so touched that you would be anticipating my work, dear friend. :) Thank you for always cheering me on!

As for the Five Enchanted Roses project... The title is most of what I have so far, LOL. I'm really happy with the possibilities, though! Looking forward to hearing more about your entry sometime!

Can't wait to reveal the cover for How a Star Falls... Just trying to get together a blurb to go along with it. Trouble is, I hadn't even decided on names for my characters yet! I know I'm jumping the gun with this story, but maybe I'll fly through the manuscript. ;) *crosses fingers*

Good luck to you, as well, with all your projects, and thanks for checking out my update!

~Amber

Ganise C. said...

This is great. You really have the gift of writing, Amber! VERY well-written post. Keep it up!

Allie said...

I love your pretty blog! Thanks for sharing. I have Forget Me Not on my Kindle and it's next on by TBR list...if I ever finish reading Sherlock Holmes!

Amber Stokes said...

Ganise,

Aww, you're so sweet! Thank you for the super encouraging words, my friend. :)

~Amber

Amber Stokes said...

Allie,

Thank you so much - for the compliment, for tagging me for this tour, and for downloading a copy of Forget Me Not! I'm next in line after Sherlock Holmes? I'll take it. ;) Which story are you reading? Those are always fun!

~Amber

Allie said...

I've been working slowly through The Complete Sherlock Holmes, so I guess the answer to your question is...all of them! Just finished today after almost a year, so on to your book! :)

Amber Stokes said...

Allie,

Oooh, ambitious - and awesome! :) Which story was your favorite, if you had a favorite? And thanks again for your interest in my books! I hope you enjoy FMN. :)

~Amber