I'm always fascinated with the writing process, because it's so different for each writer. Virginia Kelly invited me to participate in this blog hop--how could I say no? I couldn't! So thanks, Virginia, for giving me a chance to ramble on about one of my favorite topics. Without further ado, here are my questions, and answers.
1. What am I working on?
Right now my primary focus is a Regency historical titled Lord Wastrel. Yep, that's him, over there. I'll wait while you have a chance to swoon over his cover. Okay, all set? This book has taken longer than I expected, partly because I had to set it aside while I finished writing, and then publishing, a few other books. It also got pushed aside because a novella, Lord Rakehell's Love, decided it should start this Curse of True Love series. Hey, I'm just here to do what the characters want! I'm just glad they still think I'm a necessary part of the process. :)
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I'm not really sure. I think the more popular books at the moment tend to be ones that have more angst and emotional drama. I write humorously-ever-after romance, so the characters do have emotional things to deal with, but it is done with more humor, less angst. I guess I'm a palate cleanser, so if you need to read something lighter between the heavier books, I'm your gal!
3. Why do I write what I do?
I've always loved books with humor. I started writing Regencies a zillion years ago, primarily because I love witty banter between characters, as well as the humorous situations that arise from the stuffy rules Society imposes on the hero and heroine's behavior. I also write contemporary romances, and those are fun because some situations can only work in the modern era, and there is definitely a ton of humorous things happening in this timeframe.
4. How does my writing process work?
Whew. How to answer this? It always involves a lot of staring out the window, and lately it feels like a ton of hand-wringing has been added to the mix.
The process actually changes from book to book, which can be aggravating, because just when I think I've figured out how all of this works, I realize that I've actually learned how to write the LAST book I wrote, not the one I'm working on now!
I'm a pantser, so I get an idea, or a scene flashes into my mind, and then I listen to the characters chat and I type what they're saying, like I'm an invisible court reporter or something. Then I have to figure out more about them, and what their story is going to be. Little snippets of dialogue or character development occur to me at the oddest times, so I scribble them on sticky notes or the back of envelopes I find in my purse.
It's a big messy process, and I always wish it was cleaner, especially when I have to slash and burn favorite scenes that no longer fit the story. *sob* But I love the fast-drafting aspect, and I've learned to tolerate the slow-revising part--because that's actually where I figure out a lot about the characters, and that's what intrigues me the most. I love when they make me laugh, because most times I only find out what they're going to say right when they say it!
Okay, enough about me. Here are some writers who will be spilling their secrets for you next week!
My favorite things in romance are often ghosts, time travel, historical settings, plots with amnesia, eccentric secondary characters, humor, and romantic suspense. These characteristics describe what I love to read and I'm drawn to include them in my own stories. (So far, not quite all have been in one story, but it's close!) I also put my love of writing and history to use in my blog and I have written The Historical Research Companion to Everything of Interest to a Romance Writer, a research/reference book.
I worked as a legal secretary in Washington, DC for many years before moving back to my small hometown in Northern Minnesota. In recent years, in addition to my writing and my role as a mom to one, I returned to college for a degree in Biology, with an emphasis in Ecology.
I work in a hectic office by day and let loose my passion for writing romance by night! Lately I've been thinking of myself as a fairy godmother bestowing happily-ever-afters on as many people—er, I mean, characters—as possible. I love Alberta, where my contemporary romances are set, and I love the magic of love, so I'm currently developing a paranormal romance series. I can't imagine anything better than writing what I love.
Patricia Preston is a Southern author who writes historical and contemporary romance as well as humorous Southern fiction. Her publishers include New Love Stories, True Romance, Affaire de Coeur, Cloverdale Press, The Blue and Gray Magazine, Sea Oats Review, and Carina Press. She won William Faulkner Award for Short Fiction, the Lone Star Writing Competition for Historical Romance, and Harlequin’s World’s Best Romances Short Story Competition. Her short stories have been best sellers on Amazon and listed on Amazon’s Top 100 in comedy. She is currently working on a historical romance series set in Louisiana and a contemporary series, the Doctors of Desoto Springs.