Here are some little known facts about my approach to writing and my quirks:
- I can’t read any books—not anything while I’m writing because I’m afraid I’ll pick up the last author’s voice I’ve read.
- I’m an insomniac and write best between midnight and 4 am.
- When I have an emotional scene in a book I’ll often listen to music repeatedly. For instance, when writing the love scene in TORN I had Mandy Moore’s “17” playing in the background for two straight days—even though the lyrics have nothing in common with the scene, the tune moved me emotionally.
- I print everything I write. I never use handwriting.
- I carry a pencil and paper with me EVERYWHERE I go when I’m in the middle of a book—even to the movie theater or a restaurant. I’ll scribble notes in the dark if I have to and then decode them later.
- I have to write everything out in pencil first (I never use pens) before I type the text into the computer.
- I write in Hello Kitty notebooks.
- My writing is usually character driven, meaning when a character starts talking to me I write out that scene—I have no idea at the time of where or if it will actually appear in the book. Hence cutting back my novel TORN from 1100 pages to 404!
- I have a friend who is my first reader and everything—each scene or chapter—passes through him first for approval or changes.
- I mostly write in bed.
- I keep my computer printed writing drafts in schoolbook binders with numbered tabs separating chapters.
- I never have an outline; the story just comes together in pieces.
- I prefer to have a lot of scented candles on when I write. I’m probably Partylite’s biggest customer!