ottobre 23, 2011

interviews @ BookWenches and Romance Lives Forever

Hello, everyone :)

How are you all? I hope things are great. Me, I'm on week 4 of my final semester at uni, and panic hasn't quite kicked in... not yet! I've started working on a translation project, which is awesome. While in Italy, I came across so many books with sloppy translation mistakes, and it never fails to make me angry; the translator has a big responsibility to the story he or she is working on, a responsibility to do right by the author. If the translation is sloppy, it's the author who's going to lose readers and sales. Me, I love words, I love stories, and translating gives me a way to show that love, taking care of that story to make sure it comes out on the other side in the best possible way.

In other news, I have another couple of interviews out, thanks to Storm Moon Press' October blog tour. Here's an excerpt from the one on the awesome Book Wenches blog:

Many authors have told me that they don’t just want to write, they need to write. Would you say this is true for you?

I usually do. Writing is my favorite way of thinking ‘out loud’, so to speak – it helps me put things into focus and find the crux of the matter. And whenever something’s wrong, whenever I have a big decision to make… I write. Sometimes I write to myself. It’s always been my chosen way to understand and cope with the world.

Story-wise, I sometimes can’t write fast enough to jot down all the ideas tumbling around in my head. And sometimes, it feels like all the ideas are pushing together to come out and they end up clogging the way, so I spend a few days sternly refusing to write… and circling around the notebook like a shark. Other times, I don’t even want to write, because the story looks so shiny and pretty in my head and I’m not quite sure it will come out as good on the page. But the truth is, I actually can’t function very well if I’m not writing. I feel a little lost, like I’m not quite sure about what I’m supposed to be doing with my life. So, yes, I guess I’m one of those authors who need to write!

Read the rest of the interview HERE.

And here's a snippet from one at the great Romance Lives Forever blog:

Q: Where do you start when writing? Research, plotting, outline, or...?
I usually start with research. It's one of the best sources of inspiration – every little detail discovered can set off a whole set of ideas, be it a moment, a scene or a whole subplot. After I've jotted down all the interesting details, chunks of dialogue, and scene ideas, then I work on the storyline. For me, that's the most important phase. First I pinpoint four big points – the inciting incident, the moment when things go wrong and everything's about to go to hell, the big climax, and the end. Then I fill in the events in between, and I end up with a storyline where every scene is marked. Of course this is flexible, and I usually end up modifying the outline as I work, but I like having a list of scenes when I start writing. I work on one scene at a time, breaking the story down in smaller bites, and it helps me take one step at a time and not freak out trying to work on the whole thing at once. Then, once all the little bits are in place, I read the whole thing a couple of times and make sure it's cohesive, that I didn't miss any loose threads and that the tone/narrative voice is consistent.

Read the rest of the interview HERE.

Thank you all for stopping by :)!

ottobre 10, 2011

London, interview & new contract :)

Hello, fellow writers and authors :)

So I left warm and sunny Italy behind, and I'm now all settled back in London. I'm two weeks into my last semester of uni, and I'm still not quite freaking out about exams, final project and life after graduation... not yet! I've been catching up with friends and meeting new ones, and had a wander around Camden, which never fails to cheer me up when I'm homesick. I also may have purchased a lovely pair of Indian earrings and had a plate of my beloved Camden Town sweet n' sour chicken noodles :)

I've also recently signed another contract, which is very exciting! It's for my novella The Ronin and the Fox, which will be published by Storm Moon Press in February. It's the story of a Japanese ronin who finds himself stuck with a mocking, annoying and unbearably hot fox spirit...

In other news, today I'm being interviewed over at It's Raining Men blog, on my favourite writing genres, my relationship with het romance, and the always thorny issue of women writing gay fiction.

Interview extract:

What is your favorite subgenre to write?

At the moment, steampunk, hands down. I always love the steampunk feel and aesthetic, even before I knew there was a name for it – brass, brown, cream, odd machinery, the dusty, untidy, mysterious feel of it, clockwork and airships, elaborate technology that’s not modern… and then I discovered steampunk existed, and I’m very happy playing in that sandbox now. It’s still largely uncharted territory, flexible – the possibilities are endless! For example, I prefer to insert it not in a Victorian city setting, but rather in imaginary worlds, usually mixed with post-apocalyptic elements – say, people living in drought in dusty towns while a powerful minority can afford shiny steam-powered technology.
Post-apocalyptic is another of my favorites. It’s got that dusty, gritty feel again – the urban society that’s collapsed in on itself, the people that have to scrap together new lives in the remains. And since my one true love is mixed genre fiction, in the style of China Miéville’s Weird Fiction and Jonathan Barnes’ ‘The Somnambulist’, I often have post-apocalyptic settings where technology has never progressed past steampunk level, with a sprinkling of fantasy elements, say supernatural creatures or some form of magic. I don’t believe it’s necessary for authors to pick a genre label and stick to the blueprint, nor am I interested in pinpointing a genre in order to enjoy a story as a reader. But then, I always like to be surprised, and I’m always fond of unusual and unpredictable things :).

Read the rest of the interview HERE :)!