Today, I’m delighted to sit down with Lorna Suzuki, author, script writer, and creator behind the Imago Fantasy Series. I hope you enjoy taking a peak inside her writing process! Follow Lorna on Twitter @LornaSuzuki to learn more about this energetic author!
- When did you start writing?
I started writing the first of the movie optioned Imago Chronicles series on Feb. 7th, 2002, the day after I lost my job.
- Are you a pantser or a planner?
These days, I am probably about 65% plotter and the rest, pantser. My first book was more heavily plotted, but now, I trust the characters enough to let them take the lead at times.
- Can you give us an idea of your writing process?
First of all, I decide what type of story I’d like to tell. I then decide on which of the characters will feature prominently in the story (in other words, who will bear the brunt of abuse I will subject the protagonist to). I will then loosely plot out the key points or pivotal moments of each chapter, and then I write. Often, it is like watching a movie play out in my mind and I’m merely recording the events and dialogue as I subject my characters to all sorts of mental and physical trials and tribulations that they are forced to react to.
There have been times I’ve rushed passages just to meet my word count at the end of the day, but the characters always set me straight. They insist I fix things if they are not up to snuff, so until then, no more writing gets done until I heed to their protest and make the necessary changes.
- Which authors have influenced your work?
I do like Alexandre Dumas, but the authors who influence my works the most also happen to be my favorite writing mentors I’ve met through a local writers conference. These two authors are Jack Whyte, bestselling author of Arthurian legend and Terry Brooks, the father of modern day fantasy! They not only share in their wisdom, they have been incredibly supportive!
- What are you plans/future projects/new releases that we should be aware of?
I’d like to say the 10th novel in the Imago Chronicles will be ready for release next October, but with the development of A Warrior’s Tale into a major motion picture underway with filming slated for summer 2013, my writing will have to take a seat behind the movie production as I’ve been hired as a creative consultant.
- Any tips for new writers?
Take creative writing classes to hone your skills and use a professional editor if you can afford it. If not, turn to a good critique group for feedback and also use Beta readers to get honest feedback as to whether this is something that will appeal to the book buying public. And find the time to write everyday!
Also, don’t write with the sole goal of acquiring an agent or landing a publishing deal. If the story is compelling with unforgettable characters populating the pages, things have a way of working out as they should.
- Any tips for old writers?
Never assume just because you have x number of books under your belt that you’re that great. That is for your readers to decide, so your job is to focus on always producing the best quality story you can. Continue using a professional editor, if financially possible, and provide help to the aspiring authors looking for some friendly, practical advice. Sometimes, they have a fresh perspective and can have as much to share as you do!