Thursday, September 15, 2005

Does anybody really know what time it is?

Aside from my gross errors in correcting the date for the chat on the yahoo group postings, the chat with Robin Owens went swimmingly last night! Thank you so much to Robin for spending time answering all our questions and to all of you who attended!

As usual, I try to give at least a summary of what all went down during the chat. So, here ya go! Enjoy!

A Little Bit about Robin:

Plotter or Pantzer? She's a pantzer! Robin generally has a rhythm when she writes but also has some notes on what might happen in the story. For instance, in HEART THIEF she wrote the climax after writing only a few chapters of the book.

She generally likes single element covers overall.

What's next for Robin? SORCERESS OF FAITH is out and HEART QUEST is in the works. Next up for Luna is KNIGHT PROTECTOR. She's also got a novella, ROAD OF ADVENTURE in the anthology WHAT DREAMS MAY COME.

Series or individual works? Series, because it gives a frame to work within.

The part-time day job situation is going well so far. The fall weather is tempting her to stray away from writing, but to assure her fans she has yet to succumb to its call.

After writing for about 15 years, one of the greatest area of growth for her has been learning to trust her instincts about a story, writing tighter, and more deeply motivating the characters. To make her writing tighter, she pretends that she's submitting to a contest and looks for what to cut--generally, it's the qualifiers that get the axe first. As for motivation, she says that nailing motivation for the characters is primary and if you have motivation, you almost have everything.

Hard to kill off a character? Yep! But, sometimes it's necessary to enhance other characters and the story. So long as she doesn't kill off FAMS!

It takes her about 9 months with a full time job to turn out a full manuscript, but she wrote 4 complete manuscripts in about 8 or 9 years before she got the first one sold.

When she gets stuck, Robin stares at the ceiling, walks, makes sure she is using the correct POV, and does some creativity exercises (which you can find on her website!)

Terms for the Night:

Pantzer: writing by the seat of your pants instead of detailed preplanning and plotting

Deep POV: Simply showing what the character saw instead of writing "he saw..."

3rd Turning Point: Between the mid-climatic moment and the BIG climax, and usually where ya get stuck.

Teaser Chapter: What they put in the back of the previous book to get people into your next one.

Quotes of the Night:

"I love the sound of deadlines as they whiz by" Douglas Adams

"When stuck, have a man walk through the door with a gun" Raymond Chandler

AE Van Vogt used to say you should change things every 800 words (3.5 pages) to keep suspense high and have a roller coaster effect.

Thanks again, Robin! Yet, another great chat!


Blogger Ellen said...

It was a great chat... very informative. Yahoo kicked me out (again) just as the chat was wrapping up, so I didn't get a chance to thank Robin. So-- thanks, Robin!!

Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 1:39:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I missed the chat so your summary is helpful, Julie.



Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 3:35:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the summary, Julie. I was bummed to get the e-mail well after the chat was over. Sometimes being productive and avoiding e-mail has its disadvantages. ;-)


Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 5:27:00 PM EDT  
Blogger moonhart said...

Loved the chat and love Robin too!


Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 9:51:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Nancy, the summaries help alot, seeing as how I missed the chat, but I really enjoy reading what was discussed. I WILL make the next one... I will.

Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 10:29:00 PM EDT  

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