Ellen Schreiber’s top 5 writing tips
Posted by inkpop on April 24, 2010
Stand-up comedian and published book author—these are two of the world’s most hard-to-break-into careers, and Ellen Schreiber has accomplished both.
On May 18, 2010, she will release Love Bites, the seventh installment of her Vampire Kisses series, about a goth girl named Raven Madison and her vampire boyfriend, Alexander Sterling. She’s also the author of Blood Relatives, the manga edition of Vampire Kisses, and the young-adult novels Teenage Mermaid and Comedy Girl.
With more than a dozen books under her belt and best-selling status to her credit, Schreiber has learned more than a few things about being a successful author. Shortly before her live inkpop Forums chat on April 25, she shares her top five inktips.
1. ALWAYS HAVE A PEN AND PAPER
Schreiber says ideas tend to strike her at anytime—sometimes in the least convenient of places. But she’s always armed and ready. “It’s best not to leave it to memory, so I always have a cool pen and small notebook with me,” she says.
Twitter, MySpace, Facebook—like many of today’s leading authors, Schreiber has an active, engaging presence on all three social networks. “Many of my readers are on one social network or another, so I like to spread word about the books in that way.”
3. TAKE A BREAK
“I sometimes think hunkering down at my computer will make me write faster,” Schreiber says. But often, the opposite scenario inspires creativity.
A lot of Schreiber’s best ideas buzz to mind when she’s out for a walk, a drive, “or a trip to Target.”
4. MIX THINGS UP
Some writers swear by writing at the same time in the same place. But others, like Schreiber, like to write in different places.
“Moving my computer, laptop, or notebook to another room gives me a fresh approach,” she says.
5. MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR EXPERIENCES
True, fiction writers are some of the most creative idea generators on the planet, but they don’t necessarily pull stories from out of nowhere. They go out into the world and draw from everything around them.
Schreiber says striking images have a lasting impact on her. She sometimes encounters people whom she finds interesting or cool, but doesn’t give them much thought … until later, that is, when they become characters in her novels.
“When I saw two goths, dressed head to combat boots in black, swinging on swings, I later used that for the image of Raven,” she says of Vampire Kisses. “And, a girl came to a signing, dressed in a corset dress and fangs—I used that as inspiration for the outfit Raven wears in Dance with a Vampire.”
The same thing happened with a woman she saw walking down the street, dressed in all white. “When Raven walks into the job at Armstrong Travel, that woman appeared and became the inspiration for Ruby White,” Schreiber says.
“Be careful—you might just end up in one of my books.”
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This inkpop blog post was written by Amy Schroeder (aka inkpopAmy)