Monday, September 21, 2015

How My Writing Process Works: A Guest Post by S.K. Anthony

Today I'm honored to be hosting one of our favorite bloggers. S.K. Anthony is a talented writer and blogger...and I can't wait to read her latest book! Today she's telling us all about her writing process. Spoiler: it involves coffee and wine! (There's also giveaway at the end that includes a $25 Amazon gift card, so be sure you enter.)

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How My Writing Process Works 

by S.K. Anthony

I think it works via miracles. Seriously. I'm a pantser so when an idea hits me, I sit down to write and I wing it. If I start trying to figure out the plot, structure, or the why of things I stress out and confuse myself. Then I revise, rewrite, revise. Take a break and repeat. Then revise and rewrite some more. My writing process also works well with wine and coffee (not together—that'd be gross).

Speaking of wine and coffee, when I write, my mind loves to focus on the most ridiculous things. Like writing rituals for example. I must have things a certain way or I might as well give up on life. Okay well maybe something less dramatic. 

My writing process MUST include these:

  • Coffee when I start working, a few hours later I might switch to wine. But it must be white wine. I love red, but to write: white.
  • I must have music or background noise. 
  • I write down new ideas with black pens but revise with blue. Don't judge me!
  • I must have a few notebooks (say 3 or 10?), at least 5 pens, and different colored stickers by my side even if I don’t use them . . . they need to be there so I can concentrate, clearly.
  • I usually work in my kitchen, so when writing I like to face the window, but . . .
  • When revising I have to face the opposite wall. Why? I don’t know.  
These are just some of them, I'm sure I have more that I can't think of right now. And before you think I'm completely alone well let me tell you: I'm in good company. Mark Twain wrote while lying in bed. Shakespeare, Milton, and Chaucer recited Homer’s invocation of the Muse before typing a word. John Cheever wrote mostly in his underwear. And Dear Hemingway wrote standing . . . and naked. 

Tell me I’m not the only crazy one, is there something you do that makes a difference with you being productive? 




Blurb:

Kevin Pierce is a teleporter, a ladies’ man, and a loyal friend. Or so he thought.

As a genetically altered Luminary, he helps the government bring down some of the most dangerous criminals. Not very challenging if you have his special abilities. But when a group of rebel Luminaries attacks his Organization the fight for survival begins.

One shattering event after another tests the depth of his relationships, his sanity, and his powers. Emotionally torn, Kevin must choose carefully where his loyalty lies. In the middle of all the unexpected chaos he gets the biggest shock of his life when he’s faced by a betrayal he never saw coming. Angry, injured, and ready to even the score, Kevin goes Static . . .

Bio:

S. K. Anthony is a writer, a reader and a make-stuff-up-er who lives in New York with her husband and toddler twins. She is a wine connoisseur, which just really means she knows she loves it, and a caffeine addict. When she isn’t busy with her family, she finds herself being transported into the world of imagination. Well, either that or running away from spiders…she is convinced they are out to get her!






Contact info:

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85 comments:

  1. SK, those are some quirky rituals! But they work for you and that's what matters. (And I also need music or background noise to write.)
    Congratulations on the second book in your series!

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    1. I watch TV while I write (mostly it's in the background, though). I think it's a product of growing up with the TV on while doing homework. I find silence distracting.

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    2. I know, right? My mom fell asleep in the car once while holding me as a baby (way back when in Venezuela where there was no car seat law) and I rolled down her legs and probably got a bump in the wrong spot of my head. I hope that explains a lot about me.

      But yay for music in your background as well, Alex! :D

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  2. I'm the same as you SK - I love being a pantser! I never know where my book will take me. And I'll sub hot chocolate for the coffee :)

    Hope you're well rested from your conference Stephanie.

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    1. Ugh...not yet! I came back to a pile of work and clients wanting to know where they heck I've been!

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    2. Hey, hot chocolate has its spot in my writing adventures in the winter! YUM! Also, let's hear it for us pantsers!!! <3

      Stephanie, I really do hope you can catch up with rest soon!

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  3. I think those rituals are quite tame compared to the rituals of the authors you mention. Hemingway wrote standing...and naked. Who'd admit to that?

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    1. Jo, you make me feel a bit normal. Thank you! I will say, when I first read about Hemingway, I thought . . . hmm, maybe I should try it. Then I looked outside at the 10ft of snow at the time and ran and put on an extra layer of clothing. It's safe to say, writing naked isn't going to happen for me. LOL. (thank goodness!)

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  4. Ha-ha, this is awesome! I'm a pantser too... outlines give me hives. LOL And, no judgement from me, when I write in blue and revise in pink, must have a Rockstar (drink), and always wear a hoodie... oh, and I eat WAY too many peanut butter M&Ms (I hide my stash in my desk).

    Great post!

    Michelle Pickett :)
    michelle-pickett.com

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    1. Michelle, I feel like you and I could be BFFs. First, you laughed with me on my quirks, and then you said the loveliest words I've heard all day: outlines give me hives. Right along with 'writing in blue and revising in pink.' I have a gray hoodies as well that I use for writing, munch on peanut butter M&Ms too, and well you drink, I drink . . . Where have you been all my life???? :D

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    2. I'm just so glad to be around fellow pantsers. Seemed everyone at the conference was a plotter. I started to think maybe I was wrong! I do stop partway through and write a synopsis but I use that more for guidance. Most of the time it's because I have to write the synopsis after three chapters to send it to my agent to pitch to our publishing house, so I've gotten used to that!

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  5. The main thing about your writing process, S. K., aside from the fact that it's very interesting, is that it's successful and you've turned out books. Congratulations and thanks for giving us a glimpse into your busy life.

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    1. Thank you so much! I didn't look at it with your perspective that it's successful, but now I feel accomplished right along with 'insane.' lol

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    2. I say whatever works--as long as it isn't unhealthy (well, TOO unhealthy!) and it makes you productive, go for it!

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  6. I feel like such a cool kid sitting at the popular girl's table today! Thank you so much for hosting me, Stephanie!!!! I admit feeling giddy and nervous like "OMG I do not want to mess it up for her readers!" lol

    You're the bestest ever!!!!! <3

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    1. You're so sweet! If this is the popular table, you're right here with us!

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  7. The story sounds very interesting... I could get into this story line ... As far as writing, I think everyone has their own way, nothing is too strange, it is whatever works for you... I don't write books but when I do write, I have to sit cross legged on on my bed with my keyboard and a little music :) xox

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    1. I write in my oversized chair and try to get up every 30 minutes or so...sitting for too long isn't good! I have to remind myself to get up, though.

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    2. It really is whatever works! I've done the cross legged thing . . . but they fall asleep in about 5 minutes like that LOL

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  8. I need my notebook, colored pens, and sticky notes by my side too. I love that you face the wall to revise. lol

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    1. I agree--that is interesting!

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    2. I wonder now if I give myself a time-out until I'm done with some productive work? *shrugs* It works . . . LOL

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  9. Interesting. I liked getting to read what your writing process was.

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    1. I always love reading about other writers' processes.

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    2. Thanks! I enjoy reading other writer' processes, too. It's fascinating :)

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  10. Yes, I need music when I write too! And a dictionary by my side.

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    1. See? Some things are there for use and some for moral support. Even though they are just "things", they're still powerful . . . or something.

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    2. I'm looking around, trying to figure out what my "things" are. I don't have anything but a bottle of water! Does my dog count? She's outside right now and I'm writing anyway, so I guess I don't need her to write, though.

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  11. Hey There S.K. - based on your writing quirks, I would totally hang out with you, and the blurb is nice. Anything that includes coffee and wine (red or white) has my vote. Hugs...Ro

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    1. Hugs right back!!! I love hugs! Look at us already hitting it off :D lol

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  12. She had me at wine. What's not to like about that.

    Have a fabulous day., ☺

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    1. Ooh, I like you, Sandee! Have a wonderful day, too!

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    2. You can't go wrong with a glass of wine.

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  13. S.K, I love your writing rituals. I can completely understand about the black and blue pens. If I don't have two different colors handy, I go back and forth between pen and pencil. Plus starting with coffee and ending with wine, you can't go wrong. Wishing you much success.

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    1. You really can't go wrong! And yes, I would go from pen to pencil if necessary too! :D

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    2. I miss writing longhand when I could buy very specific pens and notepads! I had a whole system. Now it's just...my laptop.

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  14. Sounds like you've got some good rituals. I, however, am pretty sure my writing is maintained by miracles too. haha

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    1. LOL yes, without miracles I wouldn't finish any book. I figure these quirks keep the miracles coming so I'll keep them alive ;)

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    2. It's all miracles. Who knows where all this stuff comes from? Somewhere in our brains!

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  15. I'm a hybrid pantser/plotter. I need coffee - hot or iced - to get going with the writing. After that, I usually switch to water. Until the evening rolls around when I break out the wine and/or the chocolate. :)

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    1. Wine and or chocolate? The answer is yes. o_O

      I drink a lot of water, too. It helps from all the dehydration of coffee and wine, and forces me to get up and move around at . . . umm . . . intervals lol

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    2. I'm a hybrid, too, and OMG with the water. I just drank the equivalent of three regular water bottles in this huge bottle I have...in about an hour. I think it's because I really want to be eating something and this keeps me from that!

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  16. A fellow NYer? I'm a little partial. Haha Too funny about the white wine. I prefer white wine, but then I discovered La Crema. It's so sweet it's like candy!

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    1. Umm, tell me more about La Crema. You can't leave a fellow NYer hanging like this. It's illegal! :P

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    2. Moscata...my favorite! The red version is sweet, as well. Sweet red wine is pretty good, too. I'm going to have to try La Crema.

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  17. This sounds pretty normal for writing rituals!

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    1. That is awesome that you think so! (I guess I don't want to know who you know with strange rituals O_O) LOL

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    2. Yeah, compared to Hemingway it's pretty normal, I guess!

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  18. Oh, I love this. We all have our little rituals. I have to have my entire, or most of it at least, to-do list done before I sit down to write or whatever it is I have to do will niggle at me till I do it. I have to have complete quiet. No music. No talking. This was so interesting.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I have to turn my email off...if notifications pop up, I get distracted.

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    2. I have to turn my notifications off too! I guess writing at night helps me in that way, I have all or most of my to-dos done otherwise I wouldn't concentrate either lol

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  19. Thanks for sharing your process!

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    1. It was fun to look into it and write it down . . . normally I just write without realizing I have quirks lol

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  20. The writing process is a curious thing. I've been known to write ideas on napkins in restaurants.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. Napkins are great to-go materials. Very essential to writing. :D

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  21. Quirky with the opposite wall lol just going to it writing is how I go to. Can't have music on though or the words get stuck in my head.

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    1. Sometimes I get the words stuck in my head, too, but it's exactly when I need a break or need to work things out. I come back from the end of a song ready to go!

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  22. Whatever works for you.
    And it obviously does.
    Static sounds awesome.

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    1. Thank you! :D

      And yes, I'm glad writers can find something that works and help become productive and creative!

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  23. I love notebooks, pens stickers and I am not a writer. I just need them in my daily life!

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    1. Because you're a wonderful intelligent human being! I think everyone should have an obsession with these things. They're like air. We need it to live. (Maybe I just have a serious problem O_O)

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  24. Love your writing process and the book sounds like a great read!

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    1. Thank you, Sandra!

      It was fun writing (as you can tell by my process), so I hope it's fun reading too :D

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  25. I just love reading about your ritual before writing. I think you should add eating chocolate to the list and sticky notes. I think that you are in good company here at this popular table.
    Good luck.
    Hugs,
    JB

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    1. Julia, my list does include chocolate and lots and lots of sticky notes . . . I needed to keep it short though. Plus, I didn't want to risk being sent to a psychologist LOL

      Thanks for the good wishes and the hug! Hugs right back :)

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  26. I like the wine and the coffee for the writing process :) Would work for me :) Good luck with the book!

    betty

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    1. Oh yeah . . . it definitely would work for you lol and thanks!!! :D

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  27. The book sounds great, and even though I am not a writer, I love having notebooks and pens around me.

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    1. Because you're a wonderful person, Linda. Wonderful people love notebooks and pens, I'm sure of it. lol

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  28. Whatever works, right? That's all that matters.

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  29. You interviewed my girlfriend!!! And she's so lying. She is literally drinking wine in the kitchen in her undies typing. I know this because... It doesn't matter...

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    1. You told on me???? Ah well, the truth is the truth . . . :P

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  30. Great interview! I don't have any weird rituals, unless you count quiet. I can't have background noise or interruptions while I'm writing fiction. I'll never be one of those coffee-shop types.

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    1. It does count as a ritual! And no, I can't be one of those coffee-shop types either! I panic thinking . . . do I have to close and pack and hide my laptop and stuff EVERY TIME I have to use the bathroom? Do I lose my table? I am at a coffee shop, right? I'll be drinking lots and lots of goodies o_O

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  31. instead of ton of pens, I always have three or four different hand/creams at my desk :) Call it an aroma therapy to cheer me up every two hours or so. And I buy those small small tiny travel tubes so that I can change them often.

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    1. I like the aroma therapy and soft hands rituals :)

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  32. Hope you both are having a productive, pleasant Tuesday.

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    1. Hmm . . . today is like Monday #2 for me, but it's a pleasant one, thank goodness ;) Hope you're enjoying yours as well!

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  33. Okay, this does kind of crack me up! In a good way :) I don't have many writing traditions, but I do love some good music, or the background noise of my favorite cafe!

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  34. I am not a writer but I don't think you are crazy! I can understand having things a certain way to make it work! Good luck with the new book.

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  35. I love to write with background noise too. I so enjoyed hearing about these rituals. :) Best of luck to S.K.
    ~Jess

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