I’m a mother of two lovely boys and a cat (because everyone who owns one knows a cat is part of the family). I’ve been reading and writing since I was a small child so it’s really no wonder that I’m now an author. In third grade, I entered a Young Author competition and came away with a love for writing as well as an Honorable Mention. When I’m not slaving away to the Muse’s whims (usually in the YA genre), I love to read the same genre I write, am a huge Indie author supporter, spend way too much time on Facebook or my website, and spend time with said children, my wonderful husband, and the cat. 😉 I love connecting with new people. You can find me on my website: http://www.erindanzer.com
What inspires you to write?
As I said before, I’ve wanted to be a full-time writer since I was young. Now a days, I glean inspiration from everything around me. The inspiration for Into the Spiral came from spontaneous combustion – I wanted to write about a girl who felt like she would spontaneously combust under all the pressures of her life. Also, my two boys inspire me to write because I want to give them a good life and have time to spend with them instead of having to work outside the home.
Tell us about your writing process.
When I first began writing, I was definitely a pantser – I would just begin writing without any real direction for the story. In the last two years, I’ve found I’ve become a plotter. I have to plot a novel, have a good idea of what will happen in the story, before I begin writing it. Most of the time I stick to what happens in the outline I create, but there is always room for deviation. The characters run the show, after all!
As for my actual process, I use MS WORD for everything. I create documents for my outline, one for each book if it’s for a series. I’ve found using WORD and keeping everything contained in folders is a lot easier than using a notebook where pages could get ripped out or torn. I have to have character sketches, though I can’t get any of my characters to answer those interviews that have been created. Usually, they tell me the basics (height, eye color, hair color, etc.) to start off and I learn more about them as the story goes along. Once I feel like I know the story fairly well, I begin writing. It takes me anywhere from four to twelve weeks to write a first draft. Once I’m deep in a novel, it’s all I can think about – it literally takes over my life until I reach the end. Then I take a two week to two month break from the book before going back to do first edits. That’s when the real fun begins! 😉
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I listen and talk to my characters all the time. If something happens on the page that I’m not expecting, I ask why they did it. LOL My characters are very real people to me. I hope that comes across to my readers as well.
What advice would you give other writers?
Keep writing and never stop believing that your time will come. Also, look into all of your options. If you like being your own boss, self publishing is the way to go! Just keep in mind that everything will be up to you, from editing and publishing to marketing. Thankfully, there are TONS of resources out there! Just never give up.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I first looked into self publishing, which was new just a few years ago, but that scared me so much I decided I’d better go the traditional route. After 20+ rejection letters (all of them form letters), I handed my book out to a set of critique partners and found that I needed to a bit more rewriting. With a new MS in hand, I tried again and was signed by Otherworld Publications within six months. Unfortunately, in June of 2012, I found out they were closing their doors and was then referred to my current publisher, Hydra Publications. I was quickly picked up by Hydra and my book published in November that same year.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think the big six in New York have to take a page out of the self publishing author’s books to keep up with the way of publishing’s future. It is so easy to publish yourself these days, what with Amazon and Nook both having free avenues for such a thing (as well as self publishing to iTunes, Kobo, and Smashwords). I’ve seen a bit of it happening now, what with the bigger houses looking to pick up big name Indie authors, but I’ve also seen some things that I’m not crazy about (such as Random House’s imprint that sounds like a paid self publishing gig). Overall, I think more changes need to happen and everyone will need to adapt to the way of the future.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
Young Adult SciFi with Romance, Young Adult Paranormal Romance, New Adult Urban Fantasy
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print