Wednesday, November 2, 2011

From Nightmare to Manuscript

My blog post about the myths of co-authoring spurred a lot of great questions, so I have decided to make this a weekly segment.  I thought I would start off with the one questions I get asked most often:

"Is one of you responsible for physically writing, while the other comes up with idea?"

As most of you know,  I write both YA Contemporary and Speculative Fiction.  My contemporary pieces are written all by my lonesome; my Sci-fi/ Speculative Fiction pieces, however, are co-authored.  So this is how it works, up to this point anyhow . . .

I'm usually neck deep in some edgy YA Contemporary WIP, my emotions running high, my mind trying to sort through the hundred and one threads I want to add.  I go to bed, my body exhausted, my mind on full throttle. Inevitably I have a dream . . . or more accurately a nightmare.  You know, the kind that has you sitting up in bed, sweating, with the not so eloquent WTF thought running through your head.

Unable to get back to sleep, I get up, pace the floor and stare at the clock, waiting for the "socially acceptable" time to call Lindsay to approach.  Somewhere around 6am I call her, babble on about the insanely twisted dream, and beg her not to run screaming away from me and my dark ideas.  We hash it out, take my dream from the first chapter through to the end, and then get cranking. Start to finish, nightmare to manuscript -- about six weeks.

So these plots, these decrepit corners of hell to which we regulate our characters are truly a joint effort.  Both of us muddle through every chapter, every paragraph, every damn word until we have something worthy of shooting off to our critique partners.


  1. LOL so accurate. And I look forward to dragging even more darkness from your twisted little brain nooks in the future my dear.

  2. That explains so much! LOL. I can totally see you pacing.

  3. I think it's so cool being able to co-author a book with someone you can get on/work with so well.

  4. Now that is an interesting process! Just so you know, I expect to hear about it on the Today Show, within the next five years. ;)

  5. So happy to see you work well together. It's such a fast process.

  6. That's so cool! except for the sleepless nights. But I guess that's the passion of a writer, eh? :)