Sunday, December 4, 2011

Blog Tour: Guest Post by Jennifer Estep (And Giveaway!)

As a stop in Jennifer Estep's Blog Tour, not only do we have a fabulous guest post from her today, but also a giveaway! To find out more, read on . . .
Greetings and salutations! First of all, I want to say thanks to Leah for hosting me on the blog today. Thanks so much, Leah!

Kiss of Frost, the second book in my Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series, came out on Nov. 29. The books focus on Gwen Frost, a 17-year-old Gypsy girl who has the gift of psy­chom­e­try, or the abil­ity to know an object’s history just by touch­ing it. After a seri­ous freak-out with her magic, Gwen is shipped off to Mythos Acad­emy, a school for the descen­dants of ancient war­riors like Spar­tans, Valkyries, Ama­zons, and more.
So today, Leah asked me to talk a little about my writing process. I have to admit that I’m a total panster when it comes to writing. I don’t do detailed character outlines, storyboards, or anything like that. I just think about my heroine, her magic, and how she can use it to defeat the bad guys. I also think about the overall plot, what the big turning points of the story are, and how those turning points will affect the characters. Then, I sit down and start writing.
I usually try to write at least 2,000 to 3,000 words a day when I’m doing a first draft until I have a draft that’s about 50,000 or 60,000 words or so. Then, I let the story sit for a few weeks before going back to it, reading through, and seeing if the plot, characters, and more hold together. Then, I start on my second draft, which is a slower process as I add in more description, dialogue, and really flesh out the story. Once that’s done, I let that draft sit for a few weeks before going back to it and seeing what else needs to be added. I repeat that same process a couple of times until I have a draft that’s about 90,000 words (for a young adult book), and the book is the best that I can make it. 
As far as writing individual scenes goes, I really like writing fight scenes and having my heroine go toe-to-toe with the bad guys. That’s one of the reasons I decided to make Gwen a warrior – because I knew I could write a lot of fight scenes for a warrior whiz kid like her and all the other students at Mythos Academy.
I also try to have my characters visit new places in each book. For example, in Kiss of Frost, Gwen and everyone else at the academy go to a ski resort for the annual Winter Carnival. Plus, I also like to introduce new characters as a series goes along, both friends and other folks who will become important to Gwen as well as the bad guys that she’ll face down. 
Somehow, it all comes together. It’s just the process that works for me. One of the things I like about writing is that there is no wrong or right way to do it – you just have to figure out what works for you and how to get the words down on the page. So far, I’m having a blast writing the Mythos Academy series, and I hope to be writing about Gwen and her friends for a long time to come.
What about you guys? What do you like about writing and reading? What are some of your favorite young adult books and characters right now?

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Estep writes the Mythos Acad­emy young adult urban fan­tasy series for Kens­ing­ton. Touch of Frost, the first book in the series, and First Frost, a prequel e-story, are available now. Dark Frost, the third book, will be out in June 2012, while Crimson Frost, the fourth book, is tentatively scheduled to be published in January 2013.

For more information, excerpts, and more, visit Jennifer’s website at
http://www.jenniferestep.com/.
Thanks so much for stopping by, Jennifer! Now for the giveaway, I have ONE copy of Touch of Frost, the first novel in the series. To find out more information about it, click here. 
To enter to win, you must fill out the following form. Don't forget to like/follow this blog or comment on this post for extra entries. Only U.S. and Canada, please. Your mailing address and email will not be shared.

The winner will be contacted by me and announced on December 18th, along with my favorite answers to Jennifer's questions above: What about you guys? What do you like about writing and reading? What are some of your favorite young adult books and characters right now? Please don't leave any boxes empty in the form. Starred questions are required for form submission.

9 comments:

Kristin said...

This was a really great post, it was interesting to read about Jennifer's writing process.

Also, I didn't know the next book takes place outside of Mythos Academy. I like it when authors change the setting in their series (though I hope they're at the academy some) and when they add new characters, good or bad.

Jennifer Estep said...

Kristin -- Thanks! Glad you liked the post. The characters are at the academy in the beginning and at the end of KISS OF FROST.

VanillaOrchids said...

The thought of trying to write a novel just seems so daunting to me. But then again, I'm not a writer. I guess when you are one, you have a system of how you go about it so it is fascinating to learn a little about that. And fight scenes. I would think that would be the hardest thing to write because of all the action and movements and such. And, if dialog is added as well! Mind boggling to me. LOL At least I have the pleasure of reading them though! :)

Pam

Julie S said...

I think it is cool when characters visit new places and have new adventures in each book :)

Nicole@The More the Merrier said...

I really like when new characters are added. It tends to change the dynamics of the group which can be very fun for the reader to read about.

I agree w/VanillaOrchids trying to write a novel seems really difficult. I think I will stick to reading.

Great Post!

Jennifer Estep said...

VanillaOrchids -- Thanks! It's definitely hard writing a book, especially the very first one you ever write.

Julie -- Thanks! I like going new places with characters too, whether I'm writing a new book or reading one.

Nicole -- Thanks! New characters can definitely change the relationships in a group.

Lena Marsteller said...

I can't wait to read these books! I love mystery and magical things! Thanks for the giveaway!

Jennifer Estep said...

Lena -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the book.

whitewolfreads said...

"There is no wrong or right way to do it – you just have to figure out what works for you and how to get the words down on the page." Truer words have not be spoken. Jennifer it's awesome that you enjoy what you do but are there times when writing feels more like a chore or simply a job?

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