I’d like to give a warm welcome to R. F.Long who visits the blog today and offers some fabulous answers to Daisy’s 20 questions. There is also a cracking new release to take a peek at too!
1 How long have you been writing?
As long as I can remember, I used to make up stories. I probably started writing them down from about 12ish. Certainly I remember clearly having a novel confiscated in German class when I was about 14 or 15 because I was writing it under the desk on my lap rather than paying attention. So lost in words I didn’t realize the teacher was right in front of me. Oops. I had to go to the staff room to ask for it back. That was embarrassing.
2 Do you have a favorite book you have written?
In a way every book is the favorite. They all have something I love about them, or I wouldn’t write them. But perhaps the real answer is the next one—the one that’s made of new and shiny. My latest adult release The Mirror of Her Power is a paranormal romance all about sexy magicians. So what’s not to like?
3 Have you always wanted to write?
Yes. I can’t imagine doing anything else.
4 Are you a plotter or pantster writer?
I’m a combination. I’m primarily a pantser, but I get to a point where if I don’t sit down and work out the logic of it all, the plotting part, the words will all get away from me. But if I try to plot it all out beforehand, my characters rebel and go off to do their own things.
5 What do you enjoy most about writing?
Possibly when my characters rebel and go off to do their own thing.
6 Do you have a favorite affirmation on writing? Eg., This from Chuck Wendig is one of my favorites. The One No-Fooling Rule Is “write.” Write, write, … write. Write better today than you did yesterday and better tomorrow than you did today. Onward, fair pen monkey, onward. If you’re not a writer, something will stop you — your own doubts, hate from haters, a bad review, poor time management, a hungry raccoon that nibbles off your fingers, whatever. If you’re a writer, you’ll write. And you’ll never stop to look back.
I like Nora Roberts’ reminder that you can’t fix an empty page. Also the entire text of Stephen King’s On Writing. Best writing guide ever.
7 How do you develop your characters?
They tend to pop up in my head pretty fully formed. I need to get to know them, and that doesn’t always go too smoothly. I get to know them by writing their story so sometimes there are a lot of rewrites, and a fair amount of scenes that don’t make it in to the actual story. Mia, the heroine of The Mirror of Her Power, definitely came fully formed, whizzing about on her bike, ready to tell me everything, whereas Balthazar didn’t want to talk AT ALL for ages!
8 What is the most exciting time for you in your writing, the new beginning or the completed story? The offer of a contract?
The editing process. I love working with an editor, someone who gets the story as much as I do but can help me make it so much better.
9 If you have experienced rejection as a writer, how did you deal with it?
By focusing on what I want and where I want to be. If something doesn’t fit then trying to force it isn’t going to work. Some stories need time to find the right place, the right reader. It’s the only way that works for me. And stinky blue cheese on crackers.
10 Do you ever write yourself into your stories?
No. Eek! What a thought. So many scary things happen in my stories. I’d never survive!
11 Have you ever used a ‘real life’ incident in your writing?
I use elements of real life I guess, but in a fictional setting. I can’t think of an actual event but sometimes a phrase, a family joke or something like that will find its way in. That said I do use a lot of ‘real life’ mythology and folklore. Does that count?
12 What is your favorite way to find inspiration?
Music, particularly orchestral soundtracks from movies. Research. And visiting places. The more mysterious and magical the better.
13 Who are your favorite authors?
I tend to prefer individual stories to the whole range of an author’s work. I like Neil Gaiman lots, especially Neverwhere. I love Susan Cooper’s writing. And anything by Tolkien. I really enjoyed Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell recently. I like all kinds of stories.
14 What is the most difficult aspect of writing for you?
Patience. I am pretty dreadful at patience.
15 Coffee or Tea?
Mainly tea. I like really really good coffee—French or Italian for preference. My other half makes perfect coffee. It’s my Sunday morning treat.
16 Early rising lark or night lover owl?
Night lover owl forced to be an early rising lark by small people. It’s so not fair.
17 What do you enjoy doing when you’re not writing?
Reading, walking our dog, spending time with my family, visiting historic sites, snuggling up with my other half in front of a good film or box set.
18 Do you think you will still be writing in ten years time?
Mia’s life as a bike messenger has a few perks, mostly the glimpses she gets of the hot and mysterious Balthazar. But while making a delivery to his home, a strange bracelet attaches itself to her arm and everything changes. Balthazar is a magician, and Mia is fated to be his apprentice.
Only Balthazar doesn’t want an apprentice. The last time he tried to share his life and his power with someone it ended in ruin. He won’t risk that again. But magic and lust are intricately connected, as are the fates of magicians and their apprentices. The desire that ignites between the two of them is more than he’s prepared for, and maybe it’s more than just desire.
When Balthazar’s former apprentice, a powerful and dangerous sorceress returns with vengeance on her mind, he’ll have to join forces with Mia, or risk losing her forever. Along with his last chance of redemption.
R. F. Long always had a thing for fantasy and romance. The combination was bound to cause trouble. In university she studied English Literature, History of Religions and Celtic Civilisation, compounding the problem.
She writes all kinds of fantasy and paranormal romance (The Scroll Thief, Soul Fire, the Tales of the Holtlands series).
She lives in Wicklow, the Garden County of Ireland, and works in a specialized library of rare and unusual books. But they don’t talk to her that often.
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