Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Urban Fantasy author, Ashley Christman
Today, my guest is author/editor, Ashley Christman talking about her writing.
Why don't you start with telling us a little about yourself? What genre do you write in and why?
Well, I write primarily urban fantasy and speculative fiction because I find that I’m drawn to all things mythical, legendary, and go bump in the night.
When I’m not writing, I act, and my day job is a nurse.
How long have you been writing?
Like most writers, I’ve been crafting stories ever since I could hold a crayon. Professionally though, I’ve only been writing to be published in the last four years.
What got you interested in writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
I’ve always been a storyteller so writing was a natural progression. I don’t quite remember what inspired my first novel (I was sixteen or seventeen at the time), but I do remember the surge of overwhelming pride when I finished, even though it was rubbish.
Do you outline before you write? If not, what’s your initial process?
I don’t outline before I write. I usually just start writing and then somewhere along the line an outline forms and I jot it and my copious notes down.
What comes first: the plot or the characters?
For me, they all kind of arrive at the same time like guests to a party that are way too early.
Which of your characters do you love/hate/fear/pity the most and why?
That’s like asking me to pick a favorite child. So far I love two. Lucky Sands from The Witching Hour because he’s a very noir type hero. And Kate Kincaid, my vampire succubus heroine of Requiem because she has a very unique perspective on mankind after being alive for nearly six millennia.
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The hardest part is probably getting to the middle. Around mid book I start getting serious writer’s block and writing myself into corners. I often delete whole chapters at this point. Eventually I come out of it.
What are some of the challenges in your writing process?
Some of the challenges I face are in revision and subsequent drafts. When I finish writing, I polish to the best of my ability, send it to my crit buddy and by the time it gets back I still have to wait a while before I can tackle revisions. If I don’t wait, I find that I’m still too close to the story to look at the problems in it objectively.
Describe your writing space.
My writing space is pretty much anywhere my laptop and I are. My editing space consists of my office—desk, whiteboard, incense, candles, Red Bull, and music.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
When I’m not writing, I love to read. I also hike, act, and go on paranormal investigations. I’m also a huge classic movie fan. I love watching silent films and black and whites from Hollywood’s golden age.
What so you see for the future of publishing and e-books?
I think ebooks are here to stay. They’re not only convenient, but they can be relatively inexpensive to buy depending on where you get them. I think that the big houses are jumping into the ebook game a little late, but at least they’re playing now. I also think we’re going to see smaller and smaller print runs as we go forward over the next ten years because people are starting to embrace ebooks.
What are your current books out right now and what are the books coming up for release?
Currently The Witching Hour and Requiem are available for purchase (Requiem is available in paperback and digital formats). Coming up I have Incubust Lust (as Charlotte Davila) in September and Nightingale: Nocturne Series book 1 in October.
What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?
It’s hard to give advice that hasn’t already been given a million times. My biggest piece of advice is just start writing. Quit saying I’d like to write a book or I want to, but I don’t have time. Make the time, sit down, and start writing.
Where can people learn more about you and your work?
People can visit my website www.ashleymchristman.com or they can follow me on Facebook and Twitter.