WRITE QUESTIONS: Pam Walters

February 18, 2008 at 11:37 pm 3 comments

Today’s interivew is with a very good writing friend of mine, Pam Walters. She’s a fellow Cherry (Jennifer Crusie fan)and this upcoming RWA conference we’ll probably be joined at the hip. (and probably with something with alcohol in our hands) Without further ado…

When did you start writing?

August, 1996

What was the defining moment that made you sit down and start writing a book?

A really, really, really bad poem that I wrote and shared with my husband (English major, writer and poet long before he met me.) He very tactfully encouraged my efforts and suggested that maybe I start by writing something I know. Well, I knew romance. I remembered seeing a contest for romance writers and had an A-ha! moment.

What made you take yourself seriously?

I always did with my writing. That’s just who I am.

What have you learned about writing that shocked you the most?

Turning points, arcs, layers—um, I guess you could say craft.

What sub-genre(s) did you gravitate to when you first started? Is it the same as now and why do you think it’s changed or stayed the same?

100% historical. Historicals have always been my comfort read and the style of book I naturally turn to. I had been reading Johanna Lindsay, Judith McNaught, Julie Garwood, Kathleen Woodiwiss. At that point, I don’t think I could have done anything else. Now? I still love my historicals but have a much better appreciation for them, but I’ve branched out into paranormal (both light and dark) and contemporaries for both reading and writing. I think it’s changed because I’ve grown as a reader and forced myself to read outside my comfort zones. As I discovered the big wide world of fiction out there, my writing really started to go to a new level.

What advice have you gotten that you live by?

Swing wide.

What advice would you give a newbie (if it’s not the same as above)?

Pretty much the same—write the book as you hear or see it and don’t worry about your friends, family, upcoming multi-million dollar contract—just write it for you. No editing, no censoring, no doubting!

What’s you’re writing process? Has it changed since writing your first book?

My writing process seems to change based on the book I’m working on, things going on in my personal life, work, etc. Needless to say, it’s a very fluid process. I’m actually less disciplined than when I first started and that’s something I need to get back to. I am 65% panster and 35% plotter/planner but many times the characters just take over and I run behind them with a notebook, screaming “Wait! What did you just say? And who are you?”

What keeps you writing?

The maniacal giggle that bursts out when I have just written something brilliant.

Do you have a support system? Do you have a writing community? What valuable lessons have you learned from them?

My primary support system is my husband. He’s also a writer so I never have to worry about pissing him off when I stop him dead in the middle of a sentence and run off to write an idea down. My other support system is The Cherries (led by the fabulous cherry herself, Jenny Crusie.) What I have learned from them in terms of craft, process, the writer’s life—everything—cannot be conveyed in anything less than 20,000 words with liberal helpings of chocolate, hugs and sparkly things.

Define success for yourself?

Being a career author.

What’s your comfort reads?

Jenny Crusie, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Laurell K. Hamilton, Jim Butcher, Janet Evanovich, Lani Diane Rich, LaVyrle Spencer, Carl Hiaasen, Donald Westlake, Gregory McDonald

Who are you reading right now?

Elmore Leonard’s “Escape from Five Shadows”, Jennifer Crusie’s “Strange Bedpersons” and Stephen King’s “On Writing”

What book(s) that makes you want to write better (or stop writing because you’ll never be that good)?

There’s no way I can just pick books, so instead I’ll go with Joss Whedon, Jenny Crusie, Christopher Moore…basically anybody who can make me go, “Wow.”

Plug away…

My goal for 2008 is to get the website up so check back at http://www.pamwalters.net sometime in the spring, but in the meantime, you can visit me at http://www.myspace.com/pamwritesromance Any friend of Melissa’s is a friend of mine!

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Entry filed under: Write Questions.

I’VE BEEN AWOL IT AIN’T JUST MY MAMA…

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Pam  |  February 19, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    Aw, honey–it’s wonderful! You make me sound like a writer (which I am–I am a great writer! Yawp!!!)

    5 months, 1 week until Nationals!

  • 2. Pam  |  February 19, 2008 at 3:57 pm

    P.S. I do have a pretty flask–it’s blue to match my eyes. 🙂

  • 3. Mel  |  February 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    See interview wasn’t that painful at all. Now tell all your friends to come and comment.

    Now I need a National’s to-do list. Number 1 is: Get Pretty Flask

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