I am so pleased to have Shawna Thomas as my guest on my blog today! Read on to learn about Shawna’s journey from idea to finished product of her newest fantasy release, JOURNEY OF AWAKENING!
Have you ever thought about how books are written? I’m a writer with several books under my belt and the process still amazes me. It starts as an idea, maybe a situation or a character in the writer’s mind. I don’t know how it is for most writers but for me, this happens when I’m least expecting it. You know how I know a good character? He or she won’t leave me alone. A week or a month after the initial “introduction” the character or situation is still there, waiting for me when I close my eyes at night. Or as I’m driving down the road. So I turn your attention to him or it. Then the imagination takes over. The “what if’s” begin to pour in. I begin to weave emotions, story lines, tragedy and joy.
You see before a single word is typed the story needs to capture the writer’s imagination. Before the reader will fall in love with the characters, the writer must. The writer is, essentially a books first reader.
Now here is where you find two camps of writers: The plotters and the pantsers. Of course I’ve been around the block long enough to know that though there are the extreme writers in each category, most of us fall somewhere in between. Either way, the story starts moving. At times, it’s like the writer just needs to catch the flow, eavesdrop on conversations and type as fast as nature and ability allow. Other times it’s work. You sit and stare at a blank page wondering what the heck happens next.
But finally, you have that story written down. But you see, writers are a peculiar bunch. There is that momentary sense of satisfaction, and then we look for someone to tear it to pieces. We want you to tell us everything that is wrong with it. Or course we also want you to tell us that you love it, because like it or not, a pieces of the writer is woven into every story we write.
After it’s torn to shreds, we take up the threads and carefully rebuild, weaving in the new threads, building on the blueprint we’ve created. One we’re done, we take a moment to appreciate the effort before we send it to someone else who could possibly tear it to pieces. This might be an agent, an editor, or even another writer. Eventually, when we’ve done what we can, the finished product may barely resemble the original character or situation, but the writer feels the progression.
And then comes the day we send it off to you. The reader. Countless hours of work, stress, sleepless nights, typing, editing and, woven through it all, a piece of who we are as people and writers captured in written words on paper . a bonfire where there was once just the flicker of an idea.
That day for me is today. I give you my very first completed novel: Journey of Awakening. And let me tell you, it has been quite a journey for me to get it to you.
I sincerely hope you enjoy it, that you fall in love with the characters as I did long ago.
Here’s a preview of Journey of Awakening:
She followed Jith’s gaze. The golden sand rose away from the water’s touch, forming a hill that protected their little house and its gardens from the worst of the ocean’s fury. A shadow of melancholy tempered her excitement. She would miss the island. It was the only home she could remember. But she knew every tree, had followed or made every path through the dense interior forests. Each waterway, every animal’s den had long since been mapped. She was a warrior of Shi’ia, trained by one of the greatest commanders of all time, Willam of Ardal, and now she was full-grown. An adult by anyone’s standards. An island hideaway was not the place for her. She was ready. Ready for change, ready to use the skills her grandfather had taught her, ready to begin her life. She placed a hand on her chest and traced the hard contours of her pendant. Ready to discover the world outside their little island.
Winner of a 2011 RT Reader’s Choice award for her debut book, Altered Destiny, Shawna Thomas has been making up stories ever since finishing GONE WITH THE WIND as a child. Once she put her own ending in writing, there was no looking back.
Feel free to leave a comment for Shawna. Ask her a question about her writing process or her newest release, or just say ‘hi’!