I don't know about you, but every now and then I have a dream that I'm a newly published author and my books are decently popular - at least popular enough that someone wants to ask me questions about my creative process. Now, some people might say this is due to some fame complex, but I honestly think I dream about talking about my books because I'm too afraid to do it in real life! I don't know why, but I'm always hesitant to tell people I'm an aspiring novelist. It's certainly nothing to be ashamed of; in fact, I'm internally quite proud of it. I suppose it's that old monster under the bed, the fear of rejection, that makes me hold my tongue when people ask what I do for fun. Perhaps I'm a "closet novelist". Well, I'm almost certain I can't be the only one out there who feels the same way, so I decided to post this questionnaire for all my fellow novelists and writers here on deviantART! I wrote these questions so other closet novelists could take the time to talk in detail about their books to someone who is seriously interested in other peoples' stories - me! So if you read through these questions and get the hankering to answer them, by all means DO! Post it in your journal, or keep it for yourself, whatever you please. I only ask that you please let me know you've participated so I can read and enjoy your answers!! I filled out my own answers in a separate journal, so if you'd like read them, go here: fav.me/d5klmaf . If you do post this in your journal, please link back to this page so if any of your followers want to do it, they can copy and paste the original questions. You're in for a long haul, but it's bound to be a blast!
The following people have completed this questionnaire:
A NOVEL WRITER'S QUESTIONNAIRE
1. Many novelists have been writing for a very long time. Tell us about the first story you remember writing – or if you have no clue, tell us about your first serious attempt at a novel. What was the end result? Did you scrap it, lock it in a trunk, or rework it into something else?
2. Have you always wanted to write novels, or do different lengths of stories spark your interest? Have you written anything outside of novels?
3. Just out of curiosity, what's your take on poetry?
4. The most hated question of all: where do you get your ideas? Do they come out of thin air, or do you spend weeks/months/years coming up with something suitable?
5. Have you ever created a world or universe from top to bottom? How did you do it?? Where did you start? Have you ever been so wrapped up in a universe that it spawns many more ideas than originally intended?
6. How do you come up with names for characters? If you've ever had to invent names for places, tell us how you did that too!
7. Do any of your stories involve different languages? How? Have you ever tried to create a whole new language? What's it called? How far in depth did you go (i.e. did you totally Tolkien it or what?)? Give us some translations!!
8. When you start to tackle a new storyline, how do you plot it out? Do you even bother, or just write as it comes to you?
9. Say you have a storyline plotted out – either on paper or in your head – from beginning to middle to end. Where do you start writing? Are you one who writes chronologically?
10. Most novelists have more than one story to share – how many writing projects do you have on the go, and are you able to work on them all simultaneously? Give us a brief synopsis of each project so we know what to look forward to!
11. How long does it usually take you to complete an entire story—from planning to writing to posting/publishing?
12. Are you one of those people who need to shut themselves away in order to write, or do you go to a busy place and tune out? Share with us how you get in your zone!
13. Some writers listen to music while writing, either for inspiration or to drown out distractions. Do you? How do you select the music you listen to, and do you find a difference in your writing when you write without it?
14. Along the same lines, some writers take up a pen and draw for their stories as well – are you inspired to draw people, places, or scenes from your stories? If you have some images online, post some links to your favourite pieces!
15. Is there a certain set schedule you follow for your writing, or do you write any time inspiration hits?
16. What do you think is your greatest strength in your technical writing ability? Why?
17. Is there something about your writing style that annoys you and you wish to change?
18. Name your favourite protagonist and antagonist – they don't have to be from the same story – and explain why they're your favourite.
19. Who's your most-loved side/minor character, and why?
20. What mode of narration do you typically use? (e.g. third person, first person, omniscient – see here for descriptions of each style: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narrativ…) Have you ever tried writing in a different narrative style? In your stories, do you ever hop back and forth between different characters' view points, or do you follow one character only? Why?
21. Spelling – is it your mortal enemy or a valuable friend? Does it bother you either way?
22. Do you find you have trouble with grammar, or have your grade-school language arts classes always stuck with you?
23. Give us your favourite line(s) of dialogue from one of your stories! Make sure to put it in context, and of course name the story! Feel free to just copy and paste (or link!) a small scene if that's easier!
24. Does the physical appearance of your characters play a big role in your stories? If so, explain how.
25. Have you ever designed a character with physical or mental disabilities? Describe them.
26. Writers block: Have you ever had it? If so, did you force your way through it, or wait (im)patiently until your muse returned?
27. How willing are you to kill off your characters if the plot demands it? What's the most interesting way you've killed someone?
28. Have you ever written about or described a battle/war? Was it complicated, out of your element, or did you crank that thing out in no time? Give us a brief overview of the scene – who's fighting who, some of the highlights, or gut-wrenching moments you're particularly proud of producing. Was this scene inspired by something? And if your scene's posted somewhere online, link to it!!
29. Have you ever written a love scene? Call out the couple!! Were you able to go into details, or too squeamish to do so? What about it did you find simple or difficult? Again, if it's posted, share the link! Overall, what is your opinion of sexuality in today's literature – particularly that in online sites, like dA?
30. If there's another complicated or controversial scene or topic you are particularly proud of writing or would like to mention, write about it – or link us to it – here!
31. Genres are a fuzzy topic because one novel can fit into many categories. Do you tend to work within one realm of writing, or jump between a bunch? Pick one or two of your stories and list which categories they fit into. Then list a few of your favourite genres, and some authors that you find particularly inspiring in each.
32. Is there an author out there that you wish you could emulate? (Who's writing style do you like the best?) Feel free to say yourself!
And that's all she wrote! Good luck! And feel free to spread this all over dA - just remember to link me back your answers!!