"I would like you to post a blog about your novel. What it's about, what drew you to the story, how it came to be... not about the publishing process because that is probably a post for another time but about the book itself." --Tamela Ritter
And I asked, and she answered so... Thanks Tam. Sure.
What it's about:
That should be a super simple question, shouldn't it? Unless you happen to know me, and how hard I try to shoot myself in the foot when it comes to plotting. Also, I sort of hate answering this question because what a book is about to me, even as the writer, is maybe not what it'll be about to you. If you disagree with what I say next, I'd love to hear it.
On the face, it's about a guy who does the best he can to avoid any kind of responsibility. He lives on a little back-water planet, with his best friend, and they both do odd jobs to make ends meet. And then the world starts to go more than a little crazy around him and he has to make decisions. There are inept government officials, and shadowy organizations, and a woman who could be the girl of his dreams. He might do something about the 'girl of his dreams' part, if he gets them all out alive.
What drew you:
The characters always reel me in. Especially a character like Orion (Rye) Bartleby. There's an inherent problem with the way Orion views himself. If you asked him he'd tell you he was, at best, a blunt instrument. He'd say he's not too clever and not too useful. But he's wrong. And that internal misconception drew me. It made me wonder what he was going to do--how he'd react--when the people around him and the situations they were in challenged that. It's one thing to be footloose and fancy free when nobody needs you, but when you have to let go of that self-image what's left?
How it came to be:
Hehe. Right. So. Back in 2010 (I think) it was like the week before NaNoWriMo started, and I didn't have a plot yet. I mean I had options. I had sequels to books I'd already written (I wasn't particularly interested in any of them) and the entire plot for a paranormal/coming-home thing that's way too autobiographical to actually publish. Back in August I'd written this giant futuristic fanfic, and one of the things I like to do when I'm a bit bereft of inspiration is go back and read old stuff.
In this crazy, long-winded fanfic I'd written a conversation where two characters start talking about what their favorite books are (don't judge me) and because I over-think freaking everything, one of them had to have a book that wasn't real and reasons. His reasons basically boiled down to him identifying with this character who'd been told his entire life he was worthless, and then sometime as an adult he'd had to grow past that and find his own self-worth. I'd given his favorite book a title, and mentioned a couple of his favorite plot points, and my brain just went "you know, it's October 27th. You should just write that."
Now obviously there's editing, and the book that I sat down and started on Nov 1st wouldn't look much like the thing you can buy a copy of today (thank ****). There were people who just kind of showed up on dusty street corners without asking me first--Addy was disturbingly adept at not doing what I wanted her to--and like most things, what I thought was going to be the simple bit turned out to be incredibly complicated. But hey, what's life without a little challenge?
So. I hope that answered your questions Tamela. Thanks for the opportunity to ramble on about my book with impunity.
Side Note: Ashley asked for a post about tea, particularly in the Americas, and that's probably going to take a little research. Come back and look for it on Monday ;)
And check back on Friday, for sciency stuff about women made of awesome.