Okay, so I admit--with red-hot cheeks--that a MONTH ago when I thought I was LATE doing Camy's blog...well, I was actually a MONTH early. So anyway, here's the REAL DEAL with Camy--and the interview, along with that same promise to WIN A FREE COPY of ONLY UNI by the amazing CAMY TANG!!!
1. You now have two books available for the public, with your third coming out in August 2008. Is there anything you've learned in the process since you signed that contract that you want to share?
Not all publishing houses are the same, and certain editors/marketing directors/art departments have a better fit with certain author personalities. I know for a fact God completely guided my publishing house to me, and I'm very grateful. The intricacies of how people work together and are compatible are too complicated for my brain, but God knows and He knew Zondervan was the right fit for my debut novels. For any other aspiring writers out there--be patient and wait for that right fit. It will make ALL the difference as you go through the editorial and marketing process.
2. I know you have to be tight-lipped about what you're working on now (otherwise you'd have to kill us...oh, wait, that's my character), but can you share a bit about the direction you're now heading in?
I have a young adult proposal out there, and also a contemporary
romance proposal that hasn't been accepted yet (but hopefully will
3. You've mentioned before how much Gayle Roper has helped you. Would you encourage new/beginning writers to work with a mentor (we all know you can't just "go out and find one")?
Gayle Roper's fiction mentoring clinic at the ACFW conference (she
does them at other conferences, too, like Mount Hermon) was one of the turning points of my career. She's a fabulous teacher as well as being a terrific writer, and she can give guidance in terms of writing craft and writing business, because she's been a writer for so long. If anyone can get into one of her clinics, it's well worth the time and money. I learned as much from what she said about my fellow students' manuscripts as what she said about my own writing.
However, before someone shells out the money for that or any other
mentoring clinic, I really want to encourage people to find other less expensive ways of leaning the basics. Gayle's class is for
intermediate to advanced writers, and wouldn't be as helpful if a
writer is just beginning. My suggestion for beginning writers--actually, ALL writers, no matter what their level, should be doing this--is to read lots of writing craft books, get the MP3 recordings of conference workshops, read lots of writing articles on
4. You have a dog named after a candy bar. Does that say something about you? *grin*
That I love sweets? You betcha!
Actually, Snickers was the only name my husband and I both liked when we were trying to come up with a name for our newly adopted dog. She had previously been named Chocolate, but we reasoned that yelling "Chocolate!" at a runaway dog isn't as effective as other consonant and vowel combinations. "Snickers!" was much easier to scream down the street.
5. What do you believe is the single most important aspect of a story (Yeah, I know...that's a tough one, but you're a writer, so be creative!)?
STRUCTURE. People who know me are probably sick of me talking about
this, but I fully believe that good story structure is one of the most important things that make an editor decide to buy a manuscript. How many times have writers heard, "The middle sags" or "The book fizzles near the end" or "The pacing isn't quite even"? It's because their structure is flawed, and good, solid story structure (like the skeleton of a body) will combine with great writing and unique characters to bump the story up a level to where a publishing house will buy it.
Thanks for having me here, Ronie!