Sunday, 2 March 2014

My Writing Process - blog tour

Bella Osborne invited me to contribute to this blog tour where writers share their process. Bella is a member of the RNA’s new writer’s scheme, a project manager and a Mummy (not the Egyptian variety) who is currently writing her second novel whilst she has her fingers crossed that someone would like to publish the first one. She blogs at and can usually be found on Twitter, @osborne_bella

What am I working on?

I’m busy working on my submission for the Romantic Novelists’ Associations’ New Writers Scheme, a contemporary romance with a hint of comedy. It’s my third novel and I’m determined to complete by 31st March, clearing the decks for my birthday on 1st April.  My goal is to submit by the end of March, then on receiving the reader’s feedback I’ll address any weaknesses. Come May, I’d like to be submitting the novel to agents and publishers – so fingers crossed, but hey, you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men!

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

No disrespect to other writers, but I think the difference is the honesty and worldly experience of the author. Like a potter with clay, I tend to use experiences, emotions and knowledge from my own life to shape and mould the raw material enabling me to write from the heart. I don’t ever write about anything that I haven’t lived or can’t research/experience in-depth. As a result my romance novels address darker emotional issues with a healthy dollop of laughter – much like life.

Why do I write what I do?

I love the inner strength of people – that ability to cope in circumstances that we never thought we’d encounter and yet somehow, we survive. Whether it be the ultimate betrayal and break up, close bereavement or serious illness – the human ability to breathe in and out while enduring the greatest heartache - simply amazes me. I feel my work captures the essence of an emotion present during a difficult situation and that’s why I write what I write. I’m also a sucker for a love story. 

How does your writing process work?

For me, the seeds of an idea usually begin with a character trying to cope with a specific situation. From this point, I can walk around for months with the idea growing and germinating in my mind, as I go about my daily work. Once a few more characters have joined the cast, I sit down and create a detailed scrap book – pictures, names, birthdays, addresses, photographs, diagrams, diary dates that becomes a reference book containing every detail of the new novel. I tend to spend hours with a baby naming book – I love names with meaning and so my characters tend to grow from those pages. I tend to plan certain scenes – so outline these on small index cards and place in order – there is always plenty of scope for the unexpected to occur while I’m writing – which is one particular enjoyment of writing draft one. I’m a goal orientated person, husband calls it ‘nerdy’ but I set up a spreadsheet to record my daily word count, complete with a mini graph. I gain a satisfaction from seeing the trends and trough of my work pattern, it also means I can’t kid myself regards productivity!

Next on the blog tour

Morton Gray is a member of the RNA's New Writers' Scheme and is busy polishing novels to submit for publication. She was shortlisted for the Festival of Romance New Talent Award in 2013. Her blog at is a glorious mixture of things she comes across on her writing journey. To follow Morton via Twitter search for @MSGray53 or on Facebook as Morton Gray.


Morton S Gray said...

Yikes! How am I supposed to follow those lovely well thought out answers! I think my writing process is much more haphazard than yours - but more of that next week. Mx

Bernadette O'Dwyer said...

You will be fine - I'm just an organization freak who needs certain routines. I can 'to wait to read yours next week.
Love B

Bella Osborne said...

Great post! Love the scrapbook and so pleased I'm not the only obsessive planner!

Bernadette O'Dwyer said...

Thank you. We won't be the only ones, Bella. I reckon most writers have a crazy routine in their writing closet.