Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Julie Miller-Four Question Interview

Julie Miller is an award-winning, nationally bestselling author of breathtaking romantic suspense--with a National Readers Choice Award and a Daphne du Maurier among other prizes.  In 2009 she earned an RT BookReviews Career Achievement Award for Series Romantic Suspense.  Many of her 45+ books have appeared on the USA Today, Borders and BookScan Top 100 Romances bestseller lists.  Find out more at www.juliemiller.org

If you could give writers one small piece of advice, what would it be?

Write a complete manuscript. There are many people out there with great story ideas, and many with the ability to write--but the ability to write a COMPLETE story is a challenge many aspiring authors don't master. Writing complete, full-length manuscripts is truly the best way to learn the craft of plotting and pacing a story, developing characters and building relationships is a compelling way for readers. And it's the best, most humbling, way to learn what a challenging (yet rewarding!) job it is to write a book. Plus, without a complete story, you have nothing to sell to your would-be readers.

What is something that you often see beginning writers doing wrong?

Writing a great opening scene/chapter/section to a book, but then not giving the same attention to the rest of the story. Plotting, pacing, characterization, and grammar/formatting, of course, need to be finetuned throughout the entire book.


What book are you reading right now?

THE IRON KING by Julie Kagawa

What’s next for you?

I'm in the midst of writing a 6-book miniseries for Harlequin Intrigue. I'm on the third book right now. I'm also completing a novella for Intrigue's Christmas Cowboy anthology (out in December) and plotting out a new Ladytech (single title paranormal romantic suspense) book.

Finally, where can we find you on the web?


***Upcoming Books from Julie Miller***

ICE LAKE--Jan 2012
ALWAYS FAITHFUL (ebook only)--Jan. 2012


Cal said...

I think I fit into that category of writing three great chapters and then just getting lost in the middle. I always know how to start and end a book. It's that getting to the end that is difficult.
Thanks for being candid.

Ruby Johnson said...

Thanks for the great advice. A writer has to have determination to finish a novel or it's always going to be just a dream. I call it writing the one day novel.
Really appreciate your visit to our blog this week.

Julie Miller said...

Oh, gosh--I didn't realize the interview questions were going to be posted separately from my article or upcoming excerpt... or I would have answered more of the questions! (oops!)

Ruby, I really appreciate the opportunity to blog with you guys here. And you're right, determination is a key ingredient for anyone who wants to become published. It's a tough business, and if a writer really wants to succeed, they need to have a tough skin and keep working toward pursuing their goals.

Good luck to all the aspirings out there!

Julie Miller said...

Cal--I think every writer has that challenging portion of a book--and it's different for every author.

For me, I spend a lot of time getting the beginning of the story just right. It often takes me just as long to write the first 3 chapters as it does to complete the rest of the book!

It's good for an author to be able to identify those sticking points so that they can learn more about them, and can try different strategies to work through those challenges in a ms.

But yes, in my experience as a contest judge and mentor, probably the most common mistake I run into is a ms with a stellar beginning, but other parts of the book need work. That's part of that same toughness and determination Ruby mentioned.

Starting a new story when the idea is bright and shiny is so exciting. But sustaining that same fine eye and enthusiasm throughout an entire ms, and paying just as much attention to the details of pacing, character development, plotting, increasing conflict, etc., requires a lot of self-discipline on the part of the writer.

Good luck with your writing!

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