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Born and raised in Southern Indiana, this Hoosier transplanted herself to the Windy City after graduate school. Her passion is teaching, with writing come a close second and gaining momentum. She currently teaches College of DuPage as an adjunct professor in the physical education department and runs a martial arts studio in Naperville, IL. She holds the rank of 3rd Dan in the United States Hapkido Federation.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A convo with Author Amy Kessler - Second entry of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Blog Series

Question for week 2:
In your upcoming works in progress or new releases, what did you find most challenging to write, or what gave you the most enjoyment accomplishing, aside from finishing the writing?

By Amy Kessler

I wrote the original draft of "Midnight Symphony" when I was close to nine months pregnant, so the most challenging part was writing the sex scene. It’s hard to muster up the feeling of sexy when you aren’t feeling sexy yourself. "Midnight Symphony" was originally a NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) challenge, so I asked the people that I NaNo with, how do I get these guys in bed together? Someone suggested, get them drunk it works in real life. So that’s what I did. Cora has some whiskey and seduces Darius and it worked out. When I originally wrote the scene I thought I would have to change it completely, not just clean it up. 

The most enjoyment from my accomplishment with "Midnight Symphony" has to be the feedback that I’ve gotten from my beta readers. Despite some of the things that needed to be fixed and polished they all loved the story. Oh and the cover! I get a sense of joy when I look at it. My talented friend Jamie Wilson did the cover; she listened to me and did an amazing job on it. There is this sense of oh my God, I’m actually doing this. This is actually happening.

For "In the Light of the Moon," the hardest part of writing was finding a coherent way for Kassity’s thought to be separate from her beast and the make sure that the supernatural creatures are set in the world in a somewhat believable way. Since Kassity has no control over her panther, the two think in different ways and don’t always agree on the choices the other makes. This plays out through the whole book, but I didn’t want to confuse the readers. With the other challenge I had, any time you write something set in the real world when it comes to supernatural creatures, you want to make it as believable as you can. (Suspending the reader’s disbelief.) In order to do that you have to make sure that other details ground the reader, I found it tough to do that in certain spots with a character who is constantly fighting against her supernatural side.

My greatest enjoyment when I finished the first draft of "In the Light of the Moon" was getting sucked into the story when I went back to read it after the ‘sit in drawer period.’ (The time I let a story stew before I come back to it. So that I’m not too close to it when I try and do first edits.) The characters have amazing chemistry and I’ve already gotten good feed back from one beta. Knowing that at least one person enjoyed the book gives me that feeling of accomplishment.

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