Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Author Interview: Jodi Meadows

I had the wonderful opportunity to interview the author of the Incarnate Trilogy, Jodi Meadows. I split the interview into two parts: questions relating to the trilogy itself and questions related to writing.

Part I: Questions Relating to the Trilogy:

EmilyHeartsBooks: I found myself relating a lot to Ana especially in the first book. Do you find yourself in Ana or in any of the other characters?
Jodi Meadows: Oh of course! Ana and I definitely have a few things in common, like our love of music and the need to improve -- to be better at something we love. In school, I played the flute, and I desperately wanted to be great at it. Ana definitely inherited that from me.

EHB: Many of the characters in the Incarnate trilogy have quite unique names. How did you create them?
JM: Many of the names are real names, just very unusual ones. Some characters appear on the page with names already, but some require a bit more work.  One of my favorite resources is behindthename.com. While I was renaming characters (long story, but many of the characters' names changed in edits!), I cruised through the random name generator on behindthename.com until I came across something that clicked for a certain character.

EHB: I noticed that Ana was the only human in Heart without a gender neutral name. Was this intentional?
JM: In a way, yes! Originally, I had a different naming system -- one that was fun but definitely corny -- so during edits, I renamed almost all of my characters, including Ana. She started out with a name that fit with the original system, but my editor challenged me to think about why the people of Heart might have given her the name they did. We began looking for something brief, something the people of Heart might use to call
someone they saw as temporary and a life thief.

EHB: The mythological creatures mentioned in the previous two books are explored more in Infinite. Did you have a favorite one to write about?
JM: I think I love the sylph and dragons equally, and for different reasons. They're both pretty scary, but how cool would it be to have a guard dragon? Or a sylph to snuggle when it gets cold?

EHB: Was it emotional for you to finish the trilogy, or were you ready to move on and work on something else? 
JM: Oh my commas, yes, it was very emotional. The last, oh, third of INFINITE was especially difficult because I knew I was closing in on the end and that it would be the last time I wrote in the world. (That turned out not to be true; I ended up writing a novella from Sam's perspective months later.) I was -- and am -- excited to work on something else, though. I generally have at least one other project going on in the background, so I'd been tinkering with other things pretty much the whole time I was working on the INCARNATE series.

Part II: Questions Relating to Writing:

EHB: Do you have any unusual writing habits that you would like to share?
JM: I don't think any of my habits are unusual. I mean, it's totally normal to create detailed timelines, weather patterns, and note the phase of the moon for every scene (whether or not you use it in the story) . . . right?

: How many words per day (on average) did you write?
JM: That depends a lot! Some stories seem to fall out of my head more easily than others. Some days, I get only about 500 words. Others I can manage 5000. A lot of the time, it depends what kind of scene I'm writing, what story it is, how chatty the character is with me. . . . There are all kinds of factors. Lately I've felt good about 1000 words a day. (Which isn't much, considering I write for at least eight hours every day, often more. SIGH.)

EHB: How many words (on average) are in each of the chapters?
JM: Every chapter is as long as it needs to be. In the INCARNATE series, they're usually somewhere between 2000 words and 4000, but some have more or fewer.

EHB: How long did it take for you to write the first draft of each of the books?
JM: Probably about two to three months each? I did a lot of prep-work for the INCARNATE series, and they all required a lot of revision. But two to three months is a pretty typical time for a first draft for me.

EHB: Were there any parts in Incarnate or Asunder that you regretted writing because it changed a certain chapter or scene in Infinite?
JM: Not really. As I said, I did a lot of prep-work so I knew what the end of the story would be before I ever started writing the first page of INCARNATE. There were a lot of changes over the drafts, but I always had a clear vision of the story to work toward. 

Be sure to check out Jodi's:

A HUGE thank you, Jodi, for taking the time out of your busy schedule to answer these questions! It was a lot of fun!!

1 comment:

  1. It's always interesting to read about how authors feel about their books and their writing process. I can't wait for Infinite! ~Pam


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