On another of my group blogs, we asked each other, what are the Top Three Influences on Your Writing in 2013?
I have to say I’m answering this question differently this year than I might have in the past. My top three?
1) My CPs
I am blessed to be a part of an amazing group of writers who have been absolutely crucial to me this last year. Many thanks to Carolyn Crane, Marcella Burnard and Laura Bickle. Without their feedback, brainstorming and explaining my stories to me, I would have been lost. We meet weekly via Instant Messenger and maintain an accountability worksheet. Laura has had to back off to focus on her own work, but I cannot ignore the very important role she played in the books I wrote this year. I miss her greatly.
2) Reader Feedback
This was the year that I really started hearing from readers. From the blow-by-blow tweeted reactions to my books to long, detailed emails giving me their responses, these amazing people greatly influenced how I see my stories. Some very special ones: Carien Ubink – who also beta read for me twice when I needed it most – E and Has from The Bookpushers, who’ve been amazing with their insights into my stories, and Amy Remus from So Many Reads, who always asks interesting questions.
3) My agent
I signed with Pam in August 2012, so her influence started that fall. Still, my work in 2013 is largely in response to her. I wrote Master of the Opera (coming out January 2, eep!) at her suggestion. My Twelve Kingdoms trilogy will release starting this summer, because she sold it. While she has never directly edited my writing, her enthusiasm for my work and savvy guidance has had a profound impact on me. Much love going out to her.
I’ll be interested to hear what all of you would say. Any changes in your writing or reading influences this last year?