12 Lucky Holiday Winners

Monday, January 17, 2011

Lindsay Below: My Writing Journey

When Lea approached me a couple days ago, she asked me to "simply introduce yourself, why you love writing, what genres you love to pen, and what you've learned about the whole writing process." Even looking at that makes me giggle, but let me start with the introduction.


Hello. For those who don't know me, I'm Lindsay Below. I write young adult and middle grade fiction, and currently have two books under contract with MuseItUp Publishing. Those books are Lurkers, a young adult science fiction novel coming out on July 1st of this year. One sentence summary: When all the adults of Toronto go missing on December 21, 2012, can Kayla and Jackson figure out what went wrong and set it to rights before Christmas?

My second book is a middle grade story called Same Old Lie. One sentence summary: When Trevor reads Heather's diary, he discovers that she harbors a dark secret.

But that's only half of what I do. Under the name L. K. Below, I also write romance and fantasy for adults. You can find out more about both my pen names at www.lbelow.net

I guess that answers one of the other questions too -- what I write. I write for the story, not the genre, and could care less about branding myself. That's limiting. I'm out here to share what I love, which are my stories. When people ask me about genres I might tackle in the future, well I'll never rule anything out. My one attempt at horror flopped like a suffocating fish. Mystery is another genre I find daunting -- that is, if I set out to write it from the start. As a subplot, I often have mystery worm its way into the fantasies I write, like my current work in progress. As for my romances, well I write those with varying degrees of steam, hence the pen name.

Let's continue on to the part that made me laugh. Why do I love to write? Like many authors I know, I can't stop writing. It's an addiction, an obsession. When I'm not in a writing rut, I write constantly. Honestly, I'm a complete workaholic. My boyfriend works 60 hours a week at his job. I have the blessing of being able to write full time at home, so while he's at work, I take advantage of that. When he comes home at night do I stop? Sometimes. I try to set limits on when I write, to make it more like a structured and disciplined job. Does it work? Almost never. But I suppose the days I sit glued to my laptop make up for the days I can't write at all due to a writer's block.

Writing, to me, is like a potent drug. I get to feel every emotion that passes through my main characters' heads. I get to travel to so many different places, time periods, and even new worlds. All piggybacking off the urgings my characters give me. I can never force a story, and that I've learned. Sometimes, even when I want to, even if it's so great I think many people will want to read it, it just won't come out. I learned that lesson the hard way only this month. I had a wonderful idea for a young adult paranormal series, you know, the kind so popular right now half of you want to read it and the other half want to bang their heads against the wall, they see so many of them. Well, I tried. I couldn't even get through the first chapter. The idea is great, and I still like it, but can I write it? Not a chance. It just isn't in me to conform, even when I have my own unique way of doing so. I guess I'll have to stick with my not-so-orthodox ideas. But hey, maybe I'll start the next trend. I think it's about time for the market to start to sway to something new.

And now, as I've completely forgotten my point, I'll end with just a few more things about me. As you can tell, I ramble -- a lot -- and most of these ramblings can in fact be found on my own blog, http://lbelow.blogspot.com. There, I talk about all my writings, but I have a separate blog where I focus on my young adult ones here. If you like young adult, take a look at the free read I'm offering there, Letters to Alice. And now that I've said all I need to, have a wonderful, fun-filled day!

15 comments:

Roseanne Dowell said...

Ah, Lindsay, you described this addiction to a T or is that tee? Whatever, you hit the nail on the head. I, too, am blessed to write full time. Hubby used to be on the road and I wrote for hours and hours uninterrupted. I no longer have that luxury since he's retired. But I do find myself getting up in the middle of the night sometimes. I've discovered when an idea hits not to ignore it. All too often, I've not written it down and lost it later. Thanks for sharing.

L. K. Below said...

I know what you mean about losing an idea. I have the misfortune of getting them in the shower, most often. There's never any paper in the shower. Not to mention, if there was, it would get wet. I got a recorder, but I'm afraid to get that wet, too. Most of the time, I bolt for whatever's handy -- recorder, computer, a scrap of paper. I don't want to lose my ideas, even if I'll never have time to write them all

Pat McDermott said...

Keep feeding that addiction, Lindsay. Good luck with all those story ideas!

Sue Perkins said...

Ooh you lucky lady. Wish I could stay home and write. Lovely article Lindsay.

L. K. Below said...

Thanks, Pat! Same to you :)

L. K. Below said...

Thanks Sue! I am a lucky lady :) At least when I don't have writer's block LOL

Marva Dasef said...

Lindsay, oh fellow YA and scifi writer! Don't forget to let me host you on my blog for your book release in July.

Penny Ehrenkranz said...

Lindsay, you are one talented writer. I loved having you visit my blog to talk about your writing. Good luck.

Wendy said...

Lovely insight into one talented author, Lindsay, thank you. That paranormal series you can't write - I'll bet if you twisted it around and wrote from the opposite pov, you'd have a hit because you love that story and you wouldn't be conforming. But then, I'm sure you have plenty of other stories in you that you love as much. Good luck.

L. K. Below said...

Marva - I won't forget, and thanks for the offer!

Penny - Thank you for saying so. I had a lot of fun.

Wendy - Thank you. That is a good idea. I've got so many ideas twisting around in my head right now, but I'll have to add to them again and try it out.

Good luck to all of you, as well!

Lin said...

Lindsay, loved tour blog. Boy that inner voice that insists we write when it wants, not when it is convenient can make for some intriguing times.

Back when T-Rex wandered the planet...well maybe not quite that long ago since they didn't have cars back in T's time...okay back when I was working, raising two kids, and going to college full time I had a Tuesday Night class in Creative Writing...an elective since my four majors were Pyschology/Sociology/Computer Science/Criminal Justice...(yeah, I'm a bit of an over achiever)...we were given a writing assignment for the next week's class.

I got in the car...it was 10:30 at night...and began driving...luckily on back roads in the country where the farmers were already asleep and I had the roads to myself...because my Inner NUDGE started dictating this story and I had no choice but to drive with one hand...my left on the wheel, while my right scracthed down the words coming, blindly, since I couldn't stop and take my eyes off the road...(I had to get home...the kids, you know, I'm a Mom first, so stopping was just not an option.)

The ride home took an uncomfortably awkward hour, but I had pages of scrawling scratch and a story that earned me an "A" the follwoing week.

I'm sure you will find the answer about your paranormal. I have a wip that has me stuck in the part where the guy...a hunky guy...has the essence of the girl's grandmother inside him and that essence needs to be transferred to her to face the upcomign battle with evil. The only way to pass Grandma is to have wild, absolutely unbridled sex...problem the hero and the heroine have yet to actually kiss...and the transfer must happen tonight!

I am so trying to figure out how she, who is trying to learn how to wield her sword of power and her abilities to call down fire and ice before the upcoming battle so is really NOT focused on him, even though she recognzies the significance of his name.

Convoluted? Probably and that may be why I a struggling with how to get them to the point of DOING the DEED!

Lin said...

Please tell me your comments are delayed for approval...otherwise I just lost a fantastic response to you.

Lin said...

OMG...okay...let me see if I can remember everything I wrote here before and then I will copy it before sending it just in case.

Great posting. Our inner Nudges certainly choose some inconvenient places to get all fired up, don't they?

Back when T-Rex walked...okay maybe not THAT far back, since there were no cars in T's time, I took a class in Creative Writing...purely an elective since it had nothing to do with my four majors...Psychology/Sociology and Criminal Justice/Computer Science. (Yeah I'm an over achiever.)

The class took place on Tuesday nights between 7:00 and 10:00.

I hopped into my car at 10:30 for the drive home, the assignment topic for next week swirling in my head when my NUDGE hit.

It is fortunate all the roads I had to travel were country ones, and at the time of night, the diligent farmers were in bed, so I had the roads to myself.

There I was driving with my left hand on the wheel, my eyes on the road, while my right hand, blindly scratched and scarwled what my Nudge fed me. (Stopping was not an option. I'm a mom and I had two children to get home to.)

It was an uncomfortable trip...but I did earn an "A".

Sweetie, I'm sure you will get back to your paranormal story.

I am having trouble figuring out what to do with a wip I am writing. The hero, a hunky guy, has the essence of the heroine's dead Grandma inside him and he has to transfer Grandma to help her face the battle with evil coming up. The only way to make the transfer is to have unbridled, rip-roaring sex...and Grandma who speaks to him...is very aware of what is going on around him.

Also the heroine is busy trying to gain control over her new powers bestowed upon her by the Universe,...(fire and ice)...and use her new sword...the Chimtarra. She's too busy for anything else, even though she knows there is significance in the hero's name.

Add to this, they haven't even kissed yet, but he has to pass Grandma's essence on to her TONIGHT!

I am struggling with how to have them DO THE DEED and make it seem realistic given Grandma's presence and the nearness of evil with the fast approaching battle.

Kat tells me I will figure it out, and I will...eventually...but it is a pain in the NUDGE while I work it out.

Lin said...

OMG...okay...let me see if I can remember everything I wrote here before and then I will copy it before sending it just in case.

Great posting. Our inner Nudges certainly choose some inconvenient places to get all fired up, don't they?

Back when T-Rex walked...okay maybe not THAT far back, since there were no cars in T's time, I took a class in Creative Writing...purely an elective since it had nothing to do with my four majors...Psychology/Sociology and Criminal Justice/Computer Science. (Yeah I'm an over achiever.)

The class took place on Tuesday nights between 7:00 and 10:00.

I hopped into my car at 10:30 for the drive home, the assignment topic for next week swirling in my head when my NUDGE hit.

It is fortunate all the roads I had to travel were country ones, and at the time of night, the diligent farmers were in bed, so I had the roads to myself.

There I was driving with my left hand on the wheel, my eyes on the road, while my right hand, blindly scratched and scarwled what my Nudge fed me. (Stopping was not an option. I'm a mom and I had two children to get home to.)

It was an uncomfortable trip...but I did earn an "A".

Sweetie, I'm sure you will get back to your paranormal story.

I am having trouble figuring out what to do with a wip I am writing. The hero, a hunky guy, has the essence of the heroine's dead Grandma inside him and he has to transfer Grandma to help her face the battle with evil coming up. The only way to make the transfer is to have unbridled, rip-roaring sex...and Grandma who speaks to him...is very aware of what is going on around him.

Also the heroine is busy trying to gain control over her new powers bestowed upon her by the Universe,...(fire and ice)...and use her new sword...the Chimtarra. She's too busy for anything else, even though she knows there is significance in the hero's name.

Add to this, they haven't even kissed yet, but he has to pass Grandma's essence on to her TONIGHT!

I am struggling with how to have them DO THE DEED and make it seem realistic given Grandma's presence and the nearness of evil with the fast approaching battle.

Kat tells me I will figure it out, and I will...eventually...but it is a pain in the NUDGE while I work it out.

L. K. Below said...

Lin, that certainly does sound like quite the problem. Sometimes I look at my stories and say, "How did you get to this point?!?!" I certainly wish you luck in finding an answer, I've been stuck...though maybe not QUITE in the same way.. with WIPs before and it's definitely a bummer. I move on, but I don't really want to, not while I still love the story so much. And that story does sound like an exciting one, that's for sure.

In a way, I hope I will get back to my paranormal story (considering I used December to research and worldbuild LOL) but on the other hand, there are many other stories clamoring for my attention too. I need to have three of myself, just so I can write them all out! But the other two aren't allowed to have any ideas of their own, or I'd just be digging myself an even deeper hole. At last estimate, it would take me 35 years writing 50,000 words a month in order to finish the ideas that I have already... I'm sure I've added a year or three worth of ideas since then... *sigh*

On the plus side, my block is broken! I got two MORE ideas last night, not to mention wrote 1,500 words. Sometimes, the words just come.

I hope they do with that story for you, Lin, because I really do want to read it!