When Gabriellan came second in the Power of Tension Blogfest, she was excited. Ecstatic, even. Instead of choosing a first chapter critique, she chose interviews with me and Rachel instead. But Gabriellan didn’t realise that meant she was subjecting herself to pain, torture and possible third degree burns. She didn’t realise she was subjecting herself to… The HOT SEAT!
Gabriellan is a young writer who loves gymnastics, reading, badminton and horseback riding. According to her blog, she also loves Justin Bieber’s music, but other than that she strikes me as quite sane. Gabriellan joins us from Tenessee, USA.
Let’s get started, Gabriellan. What genre(s) do you write?
I’ll write whatever pops into my head, but my favorite genres are science fiction, action, and humor. I’ve also written paranormal, suspense, fantasy, and general fiction. Whenever I read an interesting book in a specific genre, then I want to try it. 🙂
[CJ: That’s quite a variety! Very ecclectic. :)]
Tell us about your current WiP, in a limerick!
Oh, jeez… This is for the favorite of my two WiPs, called Angel from Hell.
They call her the Angel from Hell
Death is something she knows very well
Her dad exploited her skill
And forced her to kill
Whether she’s evil or good, time will tell
Phew! That’s really hard.
[Just wait for the HOT SEAT questions. :-D]
Most of us write part time. How do you spend your time when you’re not writing?
Those little things like cleaning my room and other householdchores take up some part of my day. My six younger siblings are homeschooled, so I like to pester them sometimes.
[CJ: Six siblings. Wowsa! That must be fun! :)]
I also babysit my nephew and volunteer at a therapeutic riding center. Horses are my other passion, and the topic of my first novel, so I try to spend a lot of time at the stables.
Besides those intelligent pursuits, I like to just lie on my bed and think, or chase my nephew around the house. It’s a lot of fun.
Tell us a little about your writing process.
I don’t like to spend a lot of time plotting beforehand, and I rarely actually intend to start a new project unless it’s November andNaNoWriMo. The process goes something like this.
I wake up one day with nothing to do. By the afternoon, I’m bored out of my mind, so I grab my laptop (Tasha) and sit down on my bed to write. I start writing just any old thing. Sometimes it’s a description, but usually I start with dialogue of some sort.
By the time I get four or five pages into the story, I’m baffled as to what’s going on and why people are doing what they’re doing (can be anything from running around with guns to shape-shifting to jumping off buildings), so I have to stop and start thinking things out. A few paragraphs of light plotting later, I jump back into the story and don’t stop until I’m done.
If the story is going to be more elaborate, I’ll do more plotting. When I wrote Angel from Hell, there was tons of stuff that had happened before my character was even born that heavily impacted her life, so I had to figure all that out.
But if I can get away without research or timelines or anything organized, I will. I’m a very “write it now, fix it later” sort of writer. It can make for some serious headaches during editing, but I can’t imagine doing it any other way.
[CJ: I love how different your and JC’s answers are to this question! P.S. Just the thought of your process scares me. I plan for months before I start writing!]
Who or what areyour biggest writing inspirations?
I like to attribute a lot of the beginning inspiration I had to the Trixie Belden series. I loved the Trixie character so much that I made up all these fabulous adventures for her after I was done with the series. I told the stories to my sisters instead ofwriting them down, which I’m bummed about, because I still get a kick out of what I remember of those stories.
My sister, Elizabeth, was and is a huge inspiration to me. She was the original storyteller in my family. After my siblings and I were supposed to be in bed, we’d stay up late and tell each other stories all night. The original stories featured the true lives of all the condiments that lived in people’s cabinets and refrigerators. Good times.
[CJ: Sounds like heaps of fun. :)]
Also, movies are a big thing for me. My dad watches more action movies than anybody else I know, so I grew up loving them. Every time I watch cars explode or the protagonist kick some bad guy ass, I get this warm feeling inside. It makes me want to write equally awesome heroes and bad guys.
[CJ: We differ here as well. Give me a good drama over an action any day!]
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve faced as a writer?
My biggest challenge has been balancing my writing with school. I have a one-track mind, so my idea of time management is to do school one day then write the next. Clearly, that isn’t going to work since I’m getting new homework every day.
Other than that, I haven’t dealt with many big challenges. I’m not saying my writing journey has been smooth sailing, because there have been times when I wanted to run screaming up the highway. But I have the best support group in the world, and I know that’s helped a lot.
[CJ: That’s fantastic. A good support group makes such a difference.]
And now for the HOT SEAT questions!
Finish this sentence from your main character’s perspective:
One of the most embarrassing things that has ever happened to me was… when I kissed my boss. There was nobody there to witness my humiliation, but still. I’d rather switch lives with a slug than relive that.
Now finish the same sentence from your perspective.
One of the most embarrassing things that has ever happened to me was… at a spelling bee, when I was so nervous I practically forgot my own name, then burst into tears when I couldn’t spell the word. I’ve never gone to another spelling bee since.
[CJ: I can understand why! Why re-live those memories?!]
If you could only read one genre for the rest of your life, what genre would you choose?
This question will probably make my brain explode if I think about it for too long [CJ: :D], so I have to pick fast. I’ll have to go with action, because I wouldn’t last long without a good fight scene. Action usually has a bit ofromance and mystery tossed in, too.
Thanks for playing, Gabriellan. And congratulations again on your prize-winning blogfest entry!
If you’d like to hear more from Gabriellan, check out her blog.
If you’d like a turn in the HOT SEAT, let me know in the comments and I’ll schedule you in for a buttocks burning. 😀