Hey all you readers and writers! Emma Michaels here to introduce our guest author of the day:
T. K. Richardson
Hello T. K. and welcome to The Writers Voice!
Have you ever cut a scene out of one of your novels that you wanted to keep? Why did you do it? Can you tell us about it?
Yes, I did have to cut several scenes from Return the Heart because the word count was too high. Also the scenes I cut didn’t help the plot move forward. One of my favorite scenes did, however, reveal in more detail the relationship between all five of the characters. It was such a fun scene, too. They were in the kitchen making strange smoothie creations. It was so fun, but I did have to cut it. Still sometimes I’ll read over it and wish there was a way I could have kept it.
What was the trigger for your last novel? Your aha moment that sprouted its idea?
Well, my latest novel continues the series. Shield the Heart follows Return the Heart and I just love this novel for so many reasons. I hope fans of Return the Heart love it as much as I do.
Is there one novel in your life you love to re-read? Do you continue to learn from it every time you re-read it?
Yes, the one novel I re-read over and over is War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. Every time I read it it’s like another layer is peeled away and I’m able to see it even more clearly. Whether it’s a character’s motives, the descriptive scenery, or dialog – it reveals itself more and more with each reading.
How do you know that your plot will hold the weight of your novel? Do you write more plots that novels then pick and choose?
Honestly, I don’t even think about it. I don’t outline or plan the story ahead of time. I let the characters develop the story, plot, etc. and it comes together naturally. I don’t think about craft as I’m writing, either. When the first draft is finished I walk away from it for a while and let it simmer. Later, during the multiple rounds of editing I apply the polish. So far, this has worked for me.
Is the way you structure your novels a choice or does it come to you organically?
It definitely comes organically. I’d love to be able to sit and plot or outline a story, but it never works. I just let the characters come to me and do what would come naturally for them. It’s not always what I would like them to do, but it’s what they would do. I think it makes the story and the characters more real, or more alive.
Have you ever used or gotten ideas for dialog from conversations you have overheard or had with others?
No, not really. Sometimes, though, I’ll hear a name, or read about a far off place and ideas come to me. Many character and story ideas come to me when I travel, too. For instance, I was flying out of Charlotte, North Carolina over the summer. It was completely dark outside and when I looked out over the city the lights far below me looked just like shimmering candles floating in a dark pond. The sweetest idea for a fairytale emerged and I’ve toyed with it ever since. So, yeah, things like that happen all the time. I just wish there was more time in each day to write it all down.
To all our readers out there, thank you for following The Writers Voice and happy reading!