Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Anita Clenney| Escape from the Writer’s Cave
Author Guest / June 11, 2014

All writers have a cave, that place where they get sucked into another world. One without dishes and dust and carpools, just characters trying to find love and escape death. The cave can be a good place. We can block out the outside world and focus completely on our stories and our characters. Fix those nasty holes in our plots. Wear our pajamas, and if we’re really on a tight deadline, we might skip a shower and a meal. Our characters don’t mind. They don’t really care if we’ve eaten today, if we missed a doctor’s appointment, or we’re late picking up the kids. They just want their story on the page. But we’re more than just writers, more than our characters and stories. We can’t get so busy with our characters and plots that we forget family. Remember those people who keep knocking on the door asking “where’s dinner?” and we yell out, “Just one more paragraph. My heroine is dangling off a cliff. For heaven’s sake, I can’t just leave her there.” There needs to be a balance. If we spend all our time in the cave, we’ll burn out. Our lives and our stories will suffer. It’s…

Anita Clenney | Creating a Written World
Author Guest / May 18, 2011

As writers, we have to create worlds. Whether it’s the real world, a make-believe world, or an alternate reality, we have to populate those worlds. We dress the characters, give them histories, anxieties, families, and dreams. But I think we sometimes insert a little more of ourselves into them than we realize. For instance, you’re eyeball deep in revisions and edits and you realize your heroine is…You. No wonder she felt so familiar. Is this writer’s therapy? Are we working out our childhood troubles and disillusions through our characters? Are we living through them, or just so enamored of ourselves that we are certain we must belong in a book? Well, I hope your life has been so exciting, but I suspect we’re just slipping into the familiar. As I was writing the character of Bree Kirkland, heroine of AWAKEN THE HIGHLAND WARRIOR, I realized that Bree bore some distinct traits that I either have or want to have. Bree is a quirky historian. Not boring and stuffy, but kind of Indiana Jones-ish. Okay, that’s not me, but I wish it was. She’s clumsy–that is me–and she’s always felt a little different than the other girls. Hmmm, maybe me. Of…