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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

GUEST POST: Writing With Joy by Mercedes M. Yardley

Authors often discuss writing with the same weariness that we’d discuss any job. Let’s be realistic and admit that writing really is work. Authors need to set deadlines. Achieve goals. We have to glue ourselves to the chair even if it’s sunny outside/there’s a good rerun of something on TV/we don’t wanna. And sometimes we really don’t wanna.

True authors persevere. If we only write when the muse strikes, then perhaps we’d only be writing a few weeks of the year. The rest of the time we show up, work, create, and try to love every difficult, bloody second of it. And quite honestly, most of us do. There’s a masochistic side to writers. We’re a hardy bunch. We isolate ourselves and create worlds that don’t exist. We turn down movies and other things we want to do in order to slave over a manuscript and then send it to people who pick it apart and tell us everything wrong with it. We’re tough. We like challenges. We’re scrappy.

And then something magical happens, and we write pieces with pure joy.

Pretty Little Dead Girls: A Novel of Murder and Whimsy was this waterfall of happiness for me. I sat down to write a sequel to a novel, which would have been the responsible thing to do. But I had this one line in my head. “Bryony Adams was the type of girl who got murdered.”

What was this? This had nothing to do with my sequel! This was something different entirely! Why, that simply won’t do! I need to be professional. I need to stick with the plan, Stan. But this Bryony. Who is she? Why was she the type of girl who was murdered?

I needed to find out. I set my other project aside and dove into this new, exciting story with nothing more than that opening line. Bryony, her friends, the vengeful desert…they were all new. Intriguing to me. They took my breath away.

I loved them! Loved the characters and their simple goodness. Loved the way they spoke. They loved with their whole hearts. They were, for the most part, guileless. They exemplified the best of humanity. I cherished Bryony’s drive. Chad’s almost baffled devotion. I love the flowers that begged her to run, the celestial bodies that chattered to our mysterious star girl. I couldn’t get enough of the story, quite literally.

I wrote every spare moment. I dreamed of Bryony’s desert at night. After Thanksgiving dinner while everybody else conversed, I crept away and wrote more. This entire novel was written in three weeks.

Three weeks.

My soul was on fire. I had stardust in my eyes. I wrote with an urgency powered not by self-imposed deadlines or contracts, but with a joy that was completely unmatched. I finished this book feeling transformed. Cleansed in a way. I’ve never had that experience before or since. Every second was special. When I think of this book, I think of the pleasure that went into it. It was like an open conduit to the stars. A channel of pure joy. It’s my favorite thing I’ve ever written, and this is why.

Official Author Website
Order the book HERE
Read The Nocturnal Library's review of Pretty Little Dead Girls

AUTHOR INFORMATION: Mercedes M. Yardley has two broken laptops, three kids, a husband and no time to write, although she tries her very best. She likes to write stories. She likes to write poems. She likes to write essays and sometimes they’re funny, sometimes they aren’t. She is the author of Beautiful Sorrows, Apocalyptic Montessa and Nuclear Lulu: A Tale of Atomic Love, and Nameless: The Darkness Comes, which is the first book of what she is calling The Bone Angel Trilogy.

Want to a win a gorgeous hardcover edition of this lovely book, and a voodoo doll made by Mercedes herself as well as other goodies then enter the giveaway Rafflecopter giveaway.

NOTE: Bryony Star Girl art courtesy of Orion Zangara.


Unknown said...

I can totally relate to the "masochistic" tendencies of writers.

Haha. We all have that.

—Vic S.—

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