For the next week or so, I have a series of author interviews for “From Now On: The Last Words Anthology.” It’s a set of awesome dystopian stories all taking place in different worlds and characters. You can preorder the anthology here and it will arrive on your Kindle June 10th! All proceeds go to help JDRF and kids with diabetes.
Today I have author CD Scott joining me to talk about her writing and story for the anthology!
How did you become a writer? Any people, books, or movies inspire you to fulfill your dream?
As an only child for most of my childhood, I invented vivid imaginary worlds. I even had the stereotypical imaginary friend that most single children dream up to keep themselves company (tragically, she died when I discovered she was a double agent.) For as long as I can remember, I’ve told myself stories. During the day. At night, to lull myself to sleep. Always. My mother even remembers seeing me prance down grocery store aisles singing songs about my mystical pet unicorn (don’t judge me.)
My love of the written word began in fourth grade when I discovered the beautifully tragic novel Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls. This was the first time a book made me cry. From there, I devoured every book I could get my hands on.
The funny thing is, I never considered myself a “writer.” Though, in retrospect, I see that I was always writing something. In high school, I wrote angsty poetry but never thought to put down on paper the stories that constantly ran through my head. See, even in high school (even now!) I tell myself stories. So I suppose while I’ve never considered myself a writer, I have always considered myself a storyteller.
Still, in college, I chose to study English Literature rather than Creative Writing. Why? I guess I thought teaching would be more lucrative than being a writer (Ha! Joke was on me. Neither are lucrative.)
Fast forward twelve years. I’d given birth to my third son the year before and was still in the throes of some severe postpartum depression. One night, I had an incredibly vivid dream–the kind of dream that won’t leave you alone. And of course, is the story teller, I wanted to know how the dream ended. So I began weaving the dream into an intricate story in my mind. The story enthralled me to the point that I didn’t want to lose any of it. So, for the first time, I wrote down the first chapter of my first novel. That was the moment I truly transitioned from story teller to writer.
And I haven’t looked back since!
How did you become involved in The Last Words anthology?
I met several of my co-authors at Utopiacon in Nashville. Nealy, I believe, actually had the idea of an anthology where every story ended with the same line. KT Webb though was the organizational powerhouse that made it happen!
What is your story about? How did you come up with this idea?
My story is kind of Game of Thrones meets The Island. A Medieval world that clashes with a technologically advanced civilization and where nothing is really as it seems.
The funny thing is that this year’s anthology is dystopian, which, to be honest, isn’t my usual genre of choice. However, my husband is an avid Game of Thrones fan and while hearing the T.V. blasting the latest GoT intrigue and betrayal, I experienced one of those What If moments.
What if technology destroyed most of humanity and the survivors walled themselves off to protect themselves? What if their fear of technology hurled them a thousand years into the past and they considered anything technologically advanced as “magic.” But what if they weren’t the only survivors? What if the Others rebuilt civilization and became even more technologically advanced than before. And…
What if these two worlds clashed?
What do you feel draws people to reading dystopian stories?
Ha, I’m probably not the best person to ask! I know I loved The Hunger Games because it was so well written. Her tension and timing were absolute perfection. And perhaps that’s the key: tension.
If you could choose any book world to live in for one week, which would you choose and why?
Harry Potter, hands down.
What else are you working on? Any hints?
Currently, I’m in the process of querying the first novel of my Young Adult Science Fiction series. I know it will take some time, but I’m excited to say I’ve had a manuscript request from a well known agent. Meanwhile, I’ll also have a short story appearing in a Pirate Anthology this summer (SO much fun to write!) and I’ll be finishing the third book in my series. And also, revisions. Always, always revisions.
Are you a plotter or a panster? Or a hybrid of the two?
I completely began as a panster. And the truth is, my stories actually present themselves to me in Plot Point form. That being said, I’ve drifted more to a hybrid of the two. I plan out my major plots and then from there, as I write, I make sure my scenes follow the Scene-Sequel format. If I struggle with a chapter, I’ll do more intensive plotting of that particular chapter. However, for the most part, I let my story guide me.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
Oh wow. Well, I ended up NOT going into teaching as my original paragraph may have led you to believe. Science being my other love, I work as a cardiac sonographer (ultrasound of the heart.) Also, I homeschool my three boys while running a home-based dermatological skincare business. I’m a cub scout den leader, Sunday School teacher, and baseball and soccer mom. Oh, and a wife.
Occasionally, I eat and sleep.
Do you have any advice for new writers?
You have to READ the kind of fiction you want to write. This, for me, is the most important. If you aren’t reading, your craft will suffer. Secondly, you have to write as much as you can. I’m not going to say every day because some of us are moms and its just not always possible. But, whenever you can, however, you can, just write. And thirdly, you have to constantly read up on the craft. I’m shocked at the writers who don’t study the craft. I don’t know that I will ever feel that I have “arrived” at the pinnacle of writing knowledge. One of the best writers I know still educates herself on the craft. It never ends!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
C.D. Scott lives in the foothills of Tennessee with her three sons and husband. Drowning in testosterone, she can often be found locked in a bathroom muttering “mommy needs privacy” and “stopping touching your brother.”
She writes to maintain her sanity.