“I am a born and raised Californian, having lived in this state for nearly fifteen years now. I’ve visited nearly all of the popular and well-known cities, except for San Francisco (which I may be going to over the summer). I currently live in a not-so-well-known city that has even inspired a story (along with My Chemical Romance’s album, Danger Days).
“My house is what I love to call a zoo. There are three birds, three cats, two dogs, and three people living here. Ever heard that dogs chase cats? My dogs and cats can prove that wrong. My 80+lb dog can’t run fast enough from the tiny 10lb cat. It is very funny to watch the little cat make a grown dog run. 😄
“I am a band geek who is close to finishing her first year of high school. And that does mean I’m in the marching band, too—which is what prevents me from participating in NaNoWriMo.
“I’ve been writing for about a year and a half (started writing around October-December of 2009), and have been playing the clarinet since the fifth grade. Music is a great thing—it inspires me so much and I absolutely love playing and listening to instrumental songs. Both types of music—really all forms of media—inspire me to write and come up with ideas.
“And I’m horrible at answering questions. Just ask Nella (aka Nella-Rosmarino) or any other inkpopper on the Insomniacs threads.”
Perhaps answering questions is not Kelly’s (aka YEN) forte; but what she lacks in that department, she more than makes up for in creativity – as seen in her inkpop project Nightland.
★ Your project Nightland is currently ranked as # 300, and you are hoping to make it into the June 2011 Top Five (or, at the latest, the August 2011 Top Five, as per your profile). Do you think you can do it? Aside from getting a critique from an Editor, are there any other factors motivating you to making it to the Top Five? If so, what?
YEN: I really hope I can make it to the June Top 5, but that is probably the inkies’ opinion. One major reason why I’d love to see Nightland in the June Top 5 is that Nella and I both want to see our projects in our birthday month. A review from a HC editor is also something I’d love to see since I really would like to know what else needs to be improved upon, besides the things that lovely inkies have said and comments the editors have written about other projects. I really want Nightland to grow since I hope to one day have it published. It would be better if Nightland could reach the top 5 sooner since I’d like to start querying soon. (Don’t we all with our projects?)
★ Nightland is such a fun project in that it has elements of Peter Pan (daydreaming) and Nightmare on Elm Street (entering another world when dreaming) all rolled into one. Do you feel that this originality on your part is one of the things that has made Nightland such a popular project on inkpop?
YEN: It seems like it. I haven’t read a story that deals with daydreaming—though I have watched Peter Pan—or anything else of the sorts that involve dreams. I know for a fact, though, that without my dear friends’ help—Zoey (aka Seattelover7), Lexie (Lex Born), and Dae (Starts With One)—Nightland wouldn’t have gotten this popular. I’m a horrible promoter, so it’s these dear friends who’ve helped.
Nightland’s originality also must’ve helped since most readers strive for something that is different than the usual published books on the shelves of the YA section of the local bookstore. (Gosh do I keep cocky now. O_o) The setting is probably the most original thing in the story, which isn’t surprising because it is the land that I’ve come up with. Though the fact that Berlin—the main character—has often ‘dreamt’ of this place—dreamt really isn’t the right term, but you’d have to read to figure out the truth ;).
★ In your profile you mention that you are participating in InkieNoWriSummer which begins on June 14, 2011. What exactly is InkieNoWriSummer, and how can others participate? Do you know what you’ll be working on for InkieNoWriSummer? If so, can you tell us about it?
YEN: InkieNoWriSummer is an inkpopper’s summer version of NaNoWriMo. Inkie Novel Writing Summer. There is a thread started by ♥ Amaya ♥ where inkies can pledge to participate within this. Because I’m unable to participate during NaNoWriMo, I gladly decided on this so I can get writing done over the summer.
The project I will most likely work on is Dusty Skies—a dystopia/sci-fi centered around a fifteen-year-old with her friends trying to get back at what would be considered ‘the police’. These ‘police’ are the ones who wreak havoc on the city so the main character Dusty and her group of friends will do onto the police what was done onto them. (That bit sound confusing enough?)
I may or may not work on this. I’ve two other projects that I’d love to work on: Shadowed or Hidden Halos. Both are similar in genre, or at least the fact they’ve a bit of romance and the supernatural creatures. It is more likely, though, that I’ll work on Dusty Skies just because I’ve so much inspiration around me for it.
★ Can you tell us a bit about the creative process for Nightland?
YEN: The 2009 version of Alice in Wonderland was the first thing that prompted me towards Nightland. I’ve watched that move over five times within the last five months, I believe. I really wanted to write a story similar to Alice in Wonderland, and this shows in a few different ways, though the characters’ roles from Alice in Wonderland and Nightland don’t fit their appearances or titles when compared. This was accidental, though. What I did mean with the story was to have the classic supernatural elements (i.e. witches, demons, werewolves) combined with this other world (i.e. Nightland). When I planned out the characters, I really just randomly chose what creature I’d like them to be.
Most of the scenes came to me while I was either sitting in front of my laptop to plot, or daydreaming. That, along with music or watching different movies. It took me about two weeks to outline everything (i.e. plotting, character bios) and about four months to write. A lot of times, I was hit with either writer’s block or rough spots within the story. During those times, I forced myself to write and visited the Word War thread (or the Procrastinator’s thread) to get through these spots. It might’ve turned out bad, but at least I’d get through those scenes.
★ How do you combat writer’s block? Do you have any tips for beating out writer’s block that you’d like to share with us?
YEN: Word wars! They make you write as much as you can in 5 (sometimes 10) minutes. This is what I’ve used quite a few times to get me through rough spots. I know most say that forcing yourself to write makes the writing ‘poor’ but whatever spot you’re stuck on may never come to you. Which is why there is editing and rewriting to make this horrible spot much better later on. It doesn’t help when you can’t wait to work on something in chapter 3, yet you’re stuck on this little scene in chapter 2. I force myself through writer’s block and work on at least something so that the creative juices flow.
★ What made you fall in love with writing?
YEN: Probably The Vampire Diaries (anything by L. J. Smith really) and Twilight. Around the time that I started writing, I was reading one of the books by either Smith or Meyer. These stories, along with the short stories I had to write for seventh and eighth grade, were things that made me want to write out my of my dreams. My seventh grade English teacher is the one who told the whole class that my short story was better, and believed that I wrote at a higher level than the class I was in. She even wrote in my yearbook that I need to keep writing. It took me less than a year to really decide that I love writing stories (mostly novels now).
Pop, Pop, Pop! Rapid Fire Questions:
★ Favorite fictional character? Either Damon from The Vampire Diaries (the books) or Dru from Strange Angels.
★ What’s on your iPod? Just a few would be my top 5 favorite bands: Green Day, Cute Is What We Aim For, My Chemical Romance, Linkin Park, and Paramore.
★ Favorite quote? “You are seriously too stupid to insult.” -The Hangover
★ Pancakes or waffles? Waffles! Pancakes always taste funny to me, unlike waffles.
★ If you were granted three wishes from a genie, what would you wish for and why? Wish #1: have enough money so that my mom doesn’t have to work anymore so we can move to Santa Cruz, CA (I love that city). Wish #2: the stories that come into my mind were real. Wish #3: have my mom be able to use the last wish.
Over to you…who do you think should be the next inkpopper of the Week?
Erika (aka inkpoperika)