Today I am so pleased to welcome L.A. Ashton to Joyfully Jay. L.A. has come to talk to us about her latest release, Echoes. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
Writing About Writing
- What medium/application/etc. do you write in or with?
I’m a big Google Doc user! My editors use Microsoft Word, so I also use it as well.
- Do you collaborate with other authors?
I have! I may even be doing so… right now.
- How much editing do you do before you send to the publisher?
Each book is different. Valhalla was a work that has been rewritten so many times, it’s difficult for me to look at the text anymore. My style changed drastically even within the time from contract to release, so I found myself making massive changes through all the phases of professional editing. You can imagine how many times I’d tinkered and rewritten before that. (Hint: it was a lot)
Echoes was less of a struggle, and probably went through two thorough editing passes before I self-published in 2017. Although I do tend to edit when I write as well, going back over things and nudging them around before moving to the next section. I sent that manuscript as-is to Ninestar Press. They accepted it, and I’ve read it through twice again between then and release.
Another Dance (due for publication in April 2019), went through about the same two dense editing passes before submission.
- Do you listen to music when you write?
No! In fact, I can’t. I’m far too impressionable, and whatever is happening in the song will influence how I write. If it’s slow and morose, my characters will suddenly become mopey. If it’s energetic, my voice will become colloquial and playful. I was actually listening to part of the Interstellar soundtrack while penning the first chapter of Valhalla, and it came out truly funky. I had to rewrite almost the entire section.
- How do you decide what to write about?
That’s a rough question. I think usually characters and ideas take hold, and they’re what decides. But sometimes I’ll have an itch—a trope or a dynamic I’m dying to read, but can’t find—and I’ll start molding something to write myself. I very much believe in the power of self-indulgent writing.
- When do you write?
I’m not a morning person, but I work well in the late mornings. Usually I get up, have coffee, and sit at my computer to begin the day.
- How often do you write?
I’m a workaholic, so I wind up working what my partner would say is an unhealthy amount. It’s what I love to do! My day job can be exhausting, but if I have energy I’ll work on novel-related at least five days a week. In truth, it’s probably more than that.
- Is there any genre or type of story you want to write but are hesitant to?
If I’m feeling something I’ll give it a shot, even if it seems daunting. Although history is problematic, since I am not gifted in the ways of names or dates. Or geography. Or—
Listen, I’d have to look everything up.
- Any inspirational quotes, videos, tricks, articles, etc. that help you stay motivated?
Chuck Wendig’s site/blog in general. Friends who can understand, sympathize, and support you will save your sanity. But most importantly, know what you want. Giving up ensures failure, but as long as you’re pushing forward, you’re going the right direction.
After one thousand years of listless eternity, Oskar is used to his particular brand of loneliness. But a long walk through middle America and a few chance encounters will lead him straight to a man he’d known to be long since dead—his childhood best friend, Aranck.
Being undead hasn’t stopped Aran from living life to the fullest. He has all the money and power his charm and business savvy could earn him, and plenty of friends. Lately, though, something seems to be missing. After a millennia, perhaps the world’s shine has worn off—and that’s when Oskar stumbles back into his life, reminding him of who he used to be.
Together the two vampires remember what it felt like to live, all the while navigating a conflict with the local pack of werewolves. A lot has changed in a thousand years, and only time will tell if those changes will bring Oskar and Aranck closer together, or ensure they remain apart.
L. A. Ashton is an LGBT+ author writing LGBT+ fiction. They enjoy rock music, traveling, and anything else that adds color to their daydreams. They believe in the healing properties of art and of having a cat firmly stationed on one’s lap.