Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Spotlight Author with Nina Wright

I am so happy to share my guest Nina Wright with all of you today. To be honest, I happened upon Nina’s work because of Facebook and am pleased that I found her. She has some great insight on the writing world and wonderful advice.

What has been your biggest fear that you have had to overcome as a writer?

That’s an excellent question, Micole. I think the biggest fear I ever had occurred after reading the first draft of my first novel: I realized that the book I thought I was writing was not in fact the book that I was now rereading. To put it bluntly, my first draft was awful! So I had to figure out how to close the gap between the quality of what I wanted to produce and the quality of what I had produced. That involved not only writing many revisions but also overcoming much self-doubt.

What makes your writing unique?

I’d like to think that a writer’s well-honed voice is what makes her unique. Mine is infused with breezy humor as well as snappy dialogue and plots that keep the reader in her seat until the end.

Tell us a little bit about your books.

I currently have five books in the humorous Whiskey Mattimoe mystery series that begins with Whiskey on the Rocks. This is the perfect read for anyone who enjoys Evanovich or dog mysteries. My amateur sleuth is a recently widowed 30-something Realtor who inherits her late husband’s diva-dog, an Afghan hound inclined to steal shiny things.

I also have two paranormal novels, Homefree and Sensitive. And I’m a playwright with about 20 produced plays to my credit. I’m thrilled that Ampichellis Ebooks has just made all five Whiskey Mattimoe books available on Kindle. The paranormal novels are coming soon. . . .

What are you working on now?

I’ve got two freestanding paranormal novels under way, one with a humorous and sexy slant, the other much darker. And I’m thinking about writing a sixth Whiskey Mattimoe title.

What is your writing process? Plotter or Panster?

Every book is a different journey for me as a writer. Generally, I begin writing as soon as I know who the key characters are and what the central problem is. I may or may not know how the book ends, but I usually know at least a couple major plot points or complications. Then I start writing. I keep track of possibilities and questions as I draft, pausing periodically to “micro-plot” to the next crisis.

How long does it take you to write a manuscript?

When I could write full-time, which unfortunately I can’t do at present, I completed two books a year. Now, juggling a demanding day job (as most working writers do) and other major responsibilities, I strive to set aside whatever writing time I can grab. Last year I managed to complete a full-length play and see it on its feet in Chicagoland. This year my goal is to complete the rough draft of one novel. If I can accomplish more than that, I’ll be thrilled.

What is your favorite thing about being an author?

When I was in my 20s, I worked in the theatre and thought that being a professional actor was the best job in the world. Now I know that being a full-time author is the best job. Yes, it’s hard, lonely work, but if you’re a born storyteller, there’s nothing you’d rather do. Writing a novel is more about magic than logic: once you start building the world of your story, your unconscious joins the process and you become a medium, channeling sources you can’t explain, as well as a craftsman. I honestly enjoy all the tasks and skills that a writer is called on to use at some point in a book’s creation.

How long was your road to publication?

The third novel I wrote, revised and shopped around was the first novel I succeeded in finding a publisher for. I think I spent about five years directly working on becoming an author, but I had already been a professional playwright and business writer for more than a decade.

Any advice for aspiring authors?

If you know you are a writer, then you must write. If you can walk away from it, you’re not really a writer. Keep writing, keep believing and keep sharing your work!

Thank you Nina, for stopping in and spending time with us here on my blog. Where can we find out more information about you and your books?

This was fun, Micole. Thanks for the chance to talk about what I most love doing. My website is Readers can also find me on facebook and Twitter. I teach writing workshops and coach individual writers, too.

Thank you friends for coming. I hope you enjoyed the interview as much as I did. See you next week with Nicole Cornick’s interview.




Saloma said...

Ohhh, I'm delighted to see this posted here. I'm a huge fan of Abra the Afghan hound and her attitude. These are very funny books, Nina!

Nina Wright said...

Thanks, Saloma,and everyone else who took the time to read Micole's blog. This was a pleasure.

Sheri Humphreys said...

Nina, you wrote: So I had to figure out how to close the gap between the quality of what I wanted to produce and the quality of what I had produced. That involved not only writing many revisions but also overcoming much self-doubt.

I'm curious how you improved and how you overcame your self-doubt. Were you in a critique group? Working with someone who helped you? Or did you do it all on your own? Sheri