Monday, October 27, 2014

How Authors Write~ Erin Rhew

It's hard to believe that Erin's never participated in the How Authors Write series before now. In fact, when we set up this interview, I had to look back through the archives to make sure I hadn't missed the post somehow. So, welcome, Erin! Tell us a little about what you write.

ER: Right now, my books are only YA fantasy, but I am dabbling in YA sci-fi as well. I also have an adult historical fiction book I wrote a few years ago. I hope to go back and revamp it with all my newfangled knowledge and hopefully get that one out in to the world too.

MW: I've gotten a sneak peek at Erin's YA sci-fi, and all I can say is, "When do I get to read more???" And historical fiction? Why am I just hearing of this now? I love historical fiction :-) What POV do you use in your writing?

ER: I tend to use 3rd person and often utilize multiple POVs. My historical fiction, however, is written in 1st person. I go where the characters take me. If they wish to tell it in 1st person, we do that. 3rd person? I’m open to that too. I don’t think I fall into a “type” or “pattern.”

MW: It's always best to listen to the characters. How do you get started with a book- is it an idea, a character, vary from story to story?

ER: Usually the idea forms in my mind and the characters settle right on into the action.

MW: Are you a quick drafter?

ER: By draft, do you mean first draft? I wrote The Fulfillment Series in 3 months, but my historical fiction took 3 years. If I’m creating the world, the writing tends to go quickly, but if I’m researching and basing it on something that actually happened, it takes much longer!

MW: I can see where the research would slow things down. It's so important to get all those details just right. What about research? Do you do a lot of it?

ER: For fantasy, no. Sci-fi, a little. Historical fiction—a lot!

MW: Do you outline?

ER: I don’t tend to outline. I did do a synopsis-like outline for The Fulfillment Series because I wanted to be sure the tale could encompass a whole trilogy and not just two books. I did not want a “filler” second book. 

MW: I totally get that. I'm finding a synopsis outline a good thing to do when I get an idea. It lets me see if there's enough to support the story I'm trying to tell without getting halfway in and realizing I've spent a month writing stuff that will be shelved. Names are important, at least I think they are.  Do you name everything up front when you are drafting or do you leave comments for yourself to go back and fill in later so you don't lose the flow of what you are working on?

ER: I name everything. Once the world takes shape in my mind, the names of the places and people just fall into place. It’s not usually something I put much time or effort into.

MW: I love it when names just fall into place. Do you work with CP's or Beta's?

ER: Yes, I work with both. I have an amazing group of critique partners, and my beta readers are called The Dream Team. I let Dream Team member Kim, my timekeeper, see each chapter as it unfolds. She keeps me on task by requiring a chapter a day, so she must confirm I’ve completed my work. The rest of The Dream Team and my critique partners see the piece once I’m finished writing and have done a once-over.

MW: Sounds like a great way to keep on schedule. What books/websites have you found most helpful to helping you write your best?

ER: I really like The Emotion Thesaurus. Most of what I’ve learned about writing, I’ve learned from the publication process, from editing for BookFish Books, and from my critique partners. 

MW: Oh, that's a great book! And isn't it amazing what you can learn by reading for someoen else? I'm always amazed at what I learn when I critique. What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started writing?

ER: I wish I knew how much the publishing world hates adverbs. Poor little lost adverbs. I still love you! LOL!

MW: :-) Now a look at Erin's upcoming release: The Outlanders book 2 in The Fulfillment Series. Be sure to scroll down to read an excerpt and enter to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card and signed copies of The Prophecy and The Outlanders. 

With King Jesper dead and Prince Wilhelm mortally wounded, Halfling prince, Nash, and the Fulfilment, Layla, assume the throne of Etherea. They must contend with a new Prophecy Candidate who asserts her position, and Layla is surprised to find her fate intertwined with this challenger. Facing a myriad of choices, Nash and Layla’s decisions affect not only their own futures but that of two kingdoms.

Unbeknownst to the Ethereals or the Vanguards, a slumbering menace stirs in the south, awakened after centuries of slumber. The mysterious Outlanders, a force shadowed in mystery, sit poised to tip the balance of power, sending ripples of fear throughout both warring kingdoms.

Elder Werrick proved a formidable foe, but Layla may yet meet her match in the monstrous Outlander queen. This mistress of the dark’s plans, rooted in revenge and ancient lore, now threaten the livelihood of all three kingdoms.

Racing against time, Layla travels to the Borderlands—home of the Voltons and Ecclesiastics—to discover as much as she can about the war, the First Ones, and the prophecy itself. Lives teeter in the balance, kingdoms sit on the cusp of ruin, and a beast, greater than any she’s ever faced before, plots a catastrophic attack.

Erin Rhew is an editor, a running coach, and the author of The Fulfillment Series. Since she picked up Morris the Moose Goes to School at age four, she has been infatuated with the written word. She went on to work as a grammar and writing tutor in college and is still teased by her family and friends for being a member of the "Grammar Police." A Southern girl by blood and birth, Erin now lives in a rainy pocket of the Pacific Northwest with the amazingly talented (and totally handsome) writer Deek Rhew and their “overly fluffy,” patient-as-a-saint writing assistant, a tabby cat named Trinity. She and Deek enjoy reading aloud to one another, running, lifting, boxing, eating chocolate, and writing side-by-side. 

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