I am so super excited to be hosting the amazing Lauren McKellar on her blog tour for her brand new novel, Finding Home. Please make Lauren feel welcome and have a read of her take on writing as a craft…also, don’t forget to enter the rafflecopter giveaway down the bottom of this post to go into the running to win some amazing prizes!
So Lauren, take it away sweets 🙂
♥ ♥ ♥
Writing as a craft
I am no expert when it comes to the craft of fiction writing. Like many authors out there, I am completely Internet educated and have a degree in searching blogs and websites for useful information.
Granted, I had a bit of an unfair advantage. I am an editor of both fact and fiction, so there were certain fundamentals that stood out to me from the start of my writing journey.
Still, when I wrote Finding Home, I was pretty much a fresh writer-to-be. These are four of the most important craft-related aspects I learned:
1. Take a trip. One of the biggest eye-opening moments for me when I entered the world of fiction was the importance of the journey. It was like being told the sky is blue; you’ve seen it all your life, you’ve known it’s there, but then when someone puts it into words: wham, bam, kapow! It’s like your life changes. “Of course it is,” you say. “All my colour drawings are going to look so much better now!” Or, that’s how it was for me, anyhow. Someone telling me about the journey made me a much more calculated writer.
2. Offer up some flaws. No one like a perfect princess. People like flaws, seeing a character who has a gap between their front teeth, who makes mistakes.
Of course, we want the hero to succeed, but putting her too high on a pedestal makes her unlikeable.
3. Get a damn good beta. I am lucky enough to have some of the best beta readers around. People who will read my work, in its most horrible, revealing draft stages, and let me know their thoughts.
They judge me, and I love them for it. And I love knowing that, even though they’re quick to get out their respective red pens, when my book came out, they were there at the sidelines. In fact, they were pretty much cheering the loudest.
4. Rewrite. Again. There is no such thing as a perfect first draft. Or even a second one. I wish I’d known that when I started writing; perhaps then the pressure I placed on myself wouldn’t have been so high!
It’s okay to rewrite. In fact, it’s a necessity. I think Finding Home went through around six different drafts.
And you know what? It was six million times better for it.
And so, if I had to tell you my four most valuable writing tips, it would be these. And if you can use even one of these somewhere in your writer’s tool bag, I hope you get just as much satisfaction out of it as I did.
Lauren McKellar is a writer and reader of Young and New Adult books. Her debut novel Finding Home is out now, and can be bought from all your usual eBook sites (extensive links available here; Amazon listed below). She also works as a freelance editor for novels for all age groups and you can chat to her on twitter or facebook any time you’d like.
About Finding Home
Moody, atmospheric, and just a little bit punk, Finding Home takes contemporary YA to a new level of grit…
When Amy’s mum dies, the last thing she expects is to be kicked off her dad’s music tour all the way to her Aunt Lou in a depressing hole of a seaside town. But it’s okay — Amy learned how to cope with the best, and soon finds a hard-drinking, party-loving crowd to help ease the pain.
The only solace is her music class, but even there she can’t seem to keep it together, sabotaging her grade and her one chance at a meaningful relationship. It takes a hard truth from her only friend before Amy realises that she has to come to terms with her past, before she destroys her future.
For your readers’ chance to win one of two $5 Amazon cards, one $10 Amazon card or a copy of Finding Home, add this Rafflecopter giveaway to your post: