When did you start writing?
I’ve written everything from poetry to short stories for as long as I can remember, but I started writing YA novels when I was about twelve. My addiction to words and reading started very early on, when my parents signed me up for a book club. Also, I practically lived at the library as a child. Books were (and still are) my happy place.
Are you a pantser or a planner?
A planner all the way, though sometimes when I get into a story, the characters have other ideas. Still, I can’t start a book unless I have my set of characters and at least a vague idea of where the plot will go.
Can you give us an idea of your writing process?
First I do an outline, which I add to and tighten for several weeks. I write in my head a lot. Once the creative juices start flowing, the ideas can’t be contained. And if I don’t write them down, I will forget them (which goes for other areas of my life too, like grocery shopping). Then I start writing, usually cranking out an average of 1000 words a day until it’s done. My last book took three months to write, which is super fast for me. The more books I write, the faster I go.
Which authors have influenced your work?
Judy Blume was my first influence. I devoured her books as a pre-teen/teen. Sarah Dessen is my biggest influence. I discovered her about ten years ago, before YA exploded, and her books inspired me like nothing I’ve ever read. Other authors I admire are John Green, Sara Zarr, Morgan Matson, Colleen Clayton, Kasie West, Courtney Summers, Lauren Oliver, Gayle Forman, Tammara Webber, Jennifer Echols, and Liane Moriarty. I’ve learned so much from these authors.
What are you plans/future projects/new releases that we should be aware of?
My contemporary YA novel, FAKING PERFECT, recently sold to Kensington Publishing and will be out in Summer 2015. I’m also planning a third book in my JUST YOU series, which should (hopefully) be available before the end of the year.
Any tips for new writers?
Read, read, read. I always say this. In my opinion, avid readers make the best writers. Learn from other authors. Also, never give up. Ever. Get discouraged, sure, but keep going.
Any tips for old writers?
Well, as an old writer myself, I’ve discovered that connecting with other authors keeps that creative spark alive, along with lots and lots of reading. You’re never too old to improve your skills or learn something new.
Connect with Rebecca:
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/RebeccaWritesYA