Guest Post #6 – Delancey Stewart

Day 6 of Guest Post Week and today we feature Delancey Stewart from…..Delancey Stewart! She is an exceptional writer who juggles a job, small family and I can really relate to her posts. She inspires me more than she realises! 🙂 Go and take a look at her blog – again, you wont be disappointed!

Ok. Take it away Delancey!

1/ What Inspired You To Write Your Current WIP/Published Work?

This shouldn’t be a hard question, but it is because I have a tough time determining what my WIP is. 🙂 I have finished several drafts of a YA paranormal, which is probably the first thing that will be published (potentially self-published, but I’m shooting for the traditional route first and have had some agent interest based on pitches I did at the Writers’ Digest Conference back in January). For that book, the inspiration was kind of a perfect storm of events and ideas. I’m a huge fan of YA paranormal books and television shows, and have become kind of a big Vampire Diaries fan. I watch these shows and read this stuff through the filter of a decent writer looking for an entre to a paying market, though, and have been playing with the idea of trying to write a book for that market since before Twilight was published. I know it isn’t very sexy to say that I wanted to write something marketable. Artists are supposed to work merely for the art of it, right? But I’ve spent my professional life in marketing and can’t help but combine that outlook with my artistic efforts.

So the shorter answer is that the inspiration for my book, “In the Shadow’s Grasp,” was an episode of the Vampire Diaries. The book includes a love story between a sixteen year old girl and the ghost of a seventeen year old boy who died in 1916. There was an episode of VD where one character was seeing ghosts of girls he had been romantically involved with, and there was one powerful moment where he was able to touch one. I thought that was a really interesting idea, and kind of went from there. The book involves quite a bit more though – there’s an element of mystery and also some adventure aspects. My goal overall was to write a great story that would pull readers through to the end.

I have two other novels in progress and a collection of short stories. The inspiration for one of the books, a middle grade adventure for boys, was my own sons, who are mischievous and always looking for adventure in the most mundane things. And for the other novel and the collection, the inspiration was largely New York City, a place I lived and desperately love. Actually, my YA is set there, and I have a feeling that most of my work probably will be, at least for the foreseeable future!

2/ If There Is Anything You Could Do Differently With Your Writing, If Given The Chance, What Would It Be?

This is a hard question. I think the only thing that I’d change would be the time I have to do the writing — not so much the work itself! I am constantly working to improve and grow, using a critique group and Scribophile, which I have found to be both an excellent resource and a terrible discouragement. I am learning to take criticism gracefully, to use what works and discard the rest as opinion. I’m also learning a lot about the craft. An English degree and almost 20 years of professional writing experience in the corporate and non-fiction publication realms have not made me an expert, that’s for sure! I think what I’ve learned most is that there will always be something to learn that will make me a better writer, a better storyteller. I’ve gone all tangential — the point was that I’d make writing my full time job, but life doesn’t allow that as a possibility at the moment.

3/ You Have An Auditorium Full Of Aspiring Writers – What Is The One Most Important Piece Of Advice You Would Give Them?

I guess this feeds off the answer to the previous question. I would tell them to solicit feedback and then decide how much of it to take to heart. I would tell them to remember that ultimately, their work is their own and that it must make them happy. It’s easy to become so pushed down by the thoughts of others that you no longer want to take the risk of putting the words on the page (or the screen). Don’t let that happen. Remember why you began writing in the first place and nurse that dream — protect it. Writing is my dirty little secret. In the midst of motherhood and marriage, work and general life crap, it’s the thing that I keep protected inside me, knowing that I have something special, something wonderful, that is always there for me. No one will ever take it from me, no matter what else explodes in my life. Because it is part of me. And I think that if this auditorium full of aspiring writers are consciously protecting and nursing their gifts, then we’ll have an auditorium full of artists instead.

Thanks so much for being a part of this Delancey – and thank you for your insightful answers 🙂

My lucky last victim tomorrow will be Tonya Kerrigan so come back and see what she has to say!

And don’t forget to visit Vikki’s blog The View Outside tomorrow where I will be guesting! Ta ta for now 🙂

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About Virginia

Writer, reader, crossword puzzler and conspiracy theorist.

2 Responses to “Guest Post #6 – Delancey Stewart”

  1. The interesting thing about writers is that even while they are protecting their gifts, they are also constantly trying to put it out there and – thankfully! – sharing themselves. The bit about taking in the feedback, keeping what works and dismissing what doesn’t rings true and constructive! Thank you!

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  1. Flattery Will Get You Everywhere… « Delancey Stewart - May 31, 2012

    […] post their answers to the questions I answer today, and those have been very fun to read as well. Check it out! Share this:TwitterFacebookStumbleUponPinterestEmailLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

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