Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Curvy Writer’s Idea to Novel Experiment 2011


DJ Westerfield is going to document her journey through the preparation and writing of the book on her CurvyWriter Blog and in her weekly posts on the Curvalicious Living Magazine website. Once the book is written, edited and published, much of her work product will be put up on this website so you can see how the world came together.

The novel DJ is writing is Voodoo Moon. Voodoo Moon will be PNR/UF.

What happens after the world ends? A new one begins.
Magic and ParaNormal beings have existed for as long as time……but they have always lived in secret, their existence reduced to myth.
After a worldwide cataclysm destroys modern society, the only chance humanity has are the magic users and immortal creatures that have long been regarded as inhuman. In the ruins of one society, another rises up. One that acknowledges the existence of paranormal beings and magic as normal scientific fact. Magic blends with technology and vampires, werewolves, and witches live side by side with normal humans.
But this new world is a dangerous one. While the new city-states are relatively safe within their walls with Peacekeepers on every corner…..outside the walls in the Outer Zones danger lurks behind every derelict building and over grown tree.

Doesn’t that sound delicious??? I am really hooked on this idea now.Winking smile

Goals of the project:
  • Complete the pre-writing (prep) process before National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in November
  • Write the complete novel during   NaNoWriMo
  •  Edit and revise within thirty (30) days
  • Publish novel in January (no later than February) 2012

That is some seriously ambitious thinking. I really, really want to know more about this lady and her project. Lucky for me (and you) she agreed to an interview! YAY!!!! So with out further adieu, I would like you to warmly welcome D J Westerfield. *applause, applause, applause*

First of all, thank you for sharing your journey on Rage, Sex and Teddy Bears. I am so very interested in your project and what inspired you to take on this rather ambitious undertaking.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a thirty –$%!*@ wife, stepmom, sister, and auntie. I have been a freelance writer, editor, and ghost writer for several years. In the past I have had several short stories and novellas under two pen names. I have decided to scrap those and start fresh with a new pen name, June Stevens, and a new genre, paranormal romance/urban fiction. I recently founded Curvalicious Living Magazine (http://curvaliciousliving.com), where I am editor-in-chief. In my “day job” I am a court advocate for victims of domestic abuse.

Wow! A very busy lady indeed. Can you elaborate a little on what you want to accomplish?

I want to finish this book. I want to show that it can be done. If I do succeed in finishing this book in the time I allotted, using my book, The Story Cookbook: An Organized Approach to Fiction Writing then I will use what I learn about the process and what I accomplish to help others.

What inspired you to do this?

In the past I have only written short stories and novellas (under other pen names that I have now scrapped). I do a lot of different things, but mostly editing, critiquing, and consulting for other writers in addition to my duties as editor-in-chief/publisher of Curvalicious Living Magazine. My fiction writing has fallen to the wayside.
Losing my mom in August put things in perspective for me. She was very talented, always dreamed of writing a book, but life and fear got in her way. She was very proud of my writing . I feel like I need to finish this, not just for myself, but for her.
I have had this world in my head for a few years now, and my husband and I have been tossing around the idea of me writing books with some characters (the villains mostly) he thought up. But it was always “I’m going to…..” but everything else always came first. It is my hope that writing this book publicly will give me the motivation to keep at it. And if I can inspire someone else to write the book they always wanted, then that is icing.

You seem to have a firm grasp of your alternative world, do you anticipate this becoming a series? And if so, will future books be handled in the same fashion?

I absolutely plan a series of novels set in the ParaNorm World. The first three novels will be a series unto themselves, chronicling the lives and loves of the three Moon sisters. I hope that after that inspiration will continue to strike me, and fans will want to keep reading, so that I can go forward with more books and further explore the world. I cannot say whether or not I will write all of them “publicly” as I am writing this one. I will have to wait and see how this one turns out. I’m just hoping I don’t fail in front of  hundreds of people. Smile

I know quite a few of my followers, as well as myself rate pretty highly on the perv scale. So how much a part will romance play in this story?

I’m a sucker for romance. Though I am a huge fan of urban fantasy that has very little romance (if any at all), I don’t think I could write something like that. I want to have the urban fantasy feel, but there will undoubtedly be quite a bit of romance. I haven’t decided yet just how spicy to go.

And as a follow up, what is your target demographic, YA or more adult?

Definitely an adult target audience. However the spice will be kept to a decent level so that it won’t be too shocking to parents of teens who may decide to read it. The teens I know would rather read a book for adults than most of the teen fiction out there. Which is ironic because many of my friends and I enjoy reading YA fiction.

I am known for being extremely critical of heroines, especially when a plot hinges on them being an idiot. (no pressure) Can you tell us a little about your heroine, or if indeed there is one?

Fiona is no idiot. She is a member of an elite guard (something like a modern day cross between the FBI/CIA/and Special Forces). She is also an extremely powerful sorceress. Also, Fiona is not stick thin. I am partial to REAL women. Now, I usually like to write softer, curvier heroines, but the nature of Fiona’s work requires her to be a bit more athletic. She is tall, long legged, and probably about a size 10 – 12. I actually used a friend of mine as “body” inspiration for Fiona. She is not “plus sized” by any stretch of the imagination. She is what I consider “normal size” while also being athletic. She is also tall, about 5’10.

Her counterpart? (by the way, FYI, I’m partial to big, hulky blondes)?

Ian will (If I write this well) surprise both Fiona and the reader. Heroes in romances are often bad boys with “good guys” hidden inside. Ian is a bit different. At first glance he looks like a stodgy, intellectual snob. That is Fiona’s first impression at least. But as she and the villain of the story will learn, he is not a man to be taken lightly. As far as looks, I haven’t worked them all out yet, but when I think of Ian, in my mind I see Nathan Fillion. ( My nerd is showingNerd smile)

Ooooo, I can get with that. Niiiiiice.

So, obviously you have your groundwork done. In dealing with other writers, one of their roadblocks is when a character refuses to act in a way they want the story to go. Your solution?

The only solution is to be prepared as possible, and also open minded and ready to go in whatever direction your characters want to take you. It is also a good idea not to have any children in earshot during the writing process. It wouldn’t do for tiny ears to hear the language I use to talk to my characters when they don’t do what I want them to. And yes, I do talk to them out loud. Don’t you?

All the time!! I probably talk more to my books than real people. Who is your favorite character so far?

The villain. My husband is helping me shape the villain of Voodoo Moon, so I am partial to him for that reason. But also, this is the first time I’ve written something with a villain. I’m used to writing sappy romances, so I’m really excited about getting into the head of this nasty creature.

I do LOVE a good villain. Who would you be as one of your characters?

I am putting a bit of myself in each of the Moon sisters, but I think I would most like to be like Fiona. She is strong, confident, and can kick serious butt!

Woot! A heroine I can truly get behind. Fierce heroines rock. This is just a truly amazing task you have set for yourself, and it sounds wonderful. Good luck with your journey and I look forward to reading the final product. Thank you again, and I would really like to have you back when you have finished your book.

Thanks for having me! I would love to come back. Hopefully I can do so with a finished and readable book!

Rapid Fire Questions

Cats or Dogs – Dogs

Morning or Night – Morning

Sweet or Savory – Savory

Comfort or Fashion – Comfort

Sports car or Harley – 67 Mustang

Ocean or Mountain – Ocean

Top or Bottom – Do I have to choose just one?

And finally, the MOST  question you will ever be asked in your entire life……….

DUKE or carolinaGo VOLS! (University of TN)

blog photo
DJ Westerfield was born in Texas and has lived most of her life in various southern states with a few years in the north to round out her accent. She is a lover of stories in every form, but specifically the written word. When she isn't making up her own stories she helps others make their own better. She has worked as a freelance writer, editor, and graphic designer.

Mrs. Westerfield is an advocate for women and is founder and editor-in-chief of Curvalicious Living Magazine. Her books include "self-help" writing workbooks for writes and children, re-edited classics, and human interest research projects.

Personal quote: "I spend my days trying to be the best I can be in my roles as a Wife, Stepmom, Daughter-in -Law, Auntie, Sister, and Writer. Some days I succeed....some days I would rather hide in a closet with a good book and a case of chocolate.


Elena said...

Fantastic Interview!

I love Paranormal Novels and this seems like a Grwat start to an interesting series. I can't wait till it's finished. I'm off to stalk the authors profile. Lol!!

Unknown said...

@Elena: I can't wait for it to be finished too! I hope I can live up to the awesome idea. I hope you'll follow my progress on the CurvyWriter Blog! :)

Charla85 said...

I'm sorry to have missed this! But awesome interview chickie! And what's up with this whole Award Free Zone business?

Sebella Blue said...

I just found DJ's mission fascinating and gutsy. Her upcoming Moon sisters series sounds like a MUST READ.

Megan@Riverina Romantics said...

I love Nathan Fillion!!!