First, I apologize for being gone the last couple weeks! I’ve been off having some summer fun and trying to get some writing done. I’m really excited about this month’s Writer Wednesday interview. I had the chance chat with a lovely author from the UK named Anna W. Aden. I adore the UK and chatting with Anna made me want to go back SOON!
I hope you enjoy the interview.
What kind of female/male character do you like to read about?
This is interesting because I always thought I was a reader who liked a strong plot driven story. However, I recently found out I liked characters who had goals, and in the course of the novel or story worked towards achieving that goal.
That may sound obvious but I only realised it because I found I was getting bored with some novels, yet finishing others at one sitting, even with titles by the same writer, so I began to think of difference and realised it came to goals. All characters will have problems to have a story however not all have goals. As a writer, I’ll use both methods (problem with or without goals) though reading I prefer goal driven characters.
What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
The sex scenes and deciding if my heroine should be faithful her husband or succumb to an affair. The second can be a big no-no in a romance but this was more a book with strong romantic elements. I can’t give away the outcome but that was difficult.
However, I write in a romance sub-genre which doesn’t have strict readers’ expectations so I do have a bit of flexibility.
With the sex scenes, I wasn’t sure what intensity or how explicit I should have gone, so I wrote them half romance as in sensual and half realistic. Less on the euphemisms. Yeah, I guess I gave two hard things but they are inter-linked.
Do your friends and family know that you write?
My close family does and they are supportive and encouraging. I use them to soundboard ideas and as semi-beta readers. Some friends know as well but not all. It’s not something I really talk about outside my family. When I publish maybe I’ll be more about vocal about writing.
Which writers inspire you?
It changes, currently its paranormal romance writer Kresley Cole. A fellow writer in my online writing group WWRL (Scribophile and facebook group moderated and run by the lovely author Demi Hungerford aka Roanna Haley) suggested reading Cole, and the book I read was amazing.
She is the plotter’s plotter, and an amazing writer. Her writing and technique are flawless – I can see how she wins all those awards. Yeah, she inspires me in terms of sheer dedication to getting her story right.
I’d go so far to say her books are an advanced masterclass in plotting and writing empathic characters without coming over gimmicky. However her technique is rather intricate and complex, I heard her describe it in an interview. Basically she calls herself ‘a-fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants plotter’- yes, plotter not a pantser. I guess I reckon that probably means a dynamic plotter if there was such a thing.
Do you think real life can ever live up to the romantic ideal?
Yes, if we crush all our romantic moments together, and in some cases exaggerate them. Even if they aren’t always Happy Ever Afters though, they can be Happy For Now, or Happily A Work In Progress.
When I was a teenager, about 13 or 14, a schoolteacher caught a classmate reading a Mills and Boon romance (now Harlequin) and he announced to the class, holding up what is now considered pretty mild cover, that romances don’t give a true portrayal of life – the changing dirty nappies, doing chores, and all the dull moments -they are just a collections of chosen events to tell a narrative. It didn’t put us off reading them though – we just giggled.
So yes, I reckon if we skip the in-between moments and focus on the big ones, real life can live up to the romance ideal.
Thank you for the fun interview Anna! I hope we can chat again soon.
Anna W Aden lives in the UK. She also blogs and writes under the pseudonym Biggaletta ‘Bigga’ Day. She is a self confessed cakeaholic who loves a bargain in the sales, discovering London’s open green spaces, the occasional music concert, and libraries.
And once in awhile she catches up on reality and youtube shows.