What goes on inside the writerly mind?
Let’s sit down with our Word Weaver Writing Contest 4th place winners, Adele Marie Park, Barbara Anne Helberg, and Anne Marie Andrus, and find out.
And, no, you don’t have to have Anne or Marie in your name to win.
I’m posting three profiles simultaneously but in separate posts, so be sure to read all three.
Anne Marie Andrus
“Word Weaver is always an exciting contest and I’m honored to be amongst the winners and their fabulous stories!” – Anne Marie Andrus
DAN: Did you write your story for the contest or was is part of a larger piece?
ANNE MARIE HILSE: On one ridiculously hot night last summer, I was sipping cocktails with The Dragon Lady (yes, the real-life one), talking about the upcoming release of Monsters & Angels and wondering…
What would a present day, Sorcha Alden story sound like?
That conversation got me thinking, and I originally wrote Snapshots Of A Stray Parade and Where The Power Hides, as separate blog posts. They were combined and polished for the contest.
What does writing success look like to you?
I remember answering this question before…I think I said success would look like the keys to a small, French Quarter mansion. Now, I think success looks like the completed Monsters & Angels trilogy on the shelf of a brick and mortar bookstore. Don’t worry, the French Quarter dream is alive and well…just a pied-à-terre with a lace-iron balcony, a secluded courtyard and a water feature. If I can get a gargoyle…that would be perfect. 😊
We may have to schedule an author get-together in ‘Nawlins. With Jenny and Allison, and me, and… that could be fun! Maybe you can find us a conference to crash…
What are you working on now?
I’m hard at work on the sequel to Monsters & Angels, but I received a lot of love for Dr. Raimond Banitierre…so much love…that I’ll be publishing a novella about Raimond’s remarkable history first.
What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
I’ve avoided this question a bit, since my goal is to paint a picture for readers based on descriptions and dialogue.
I have a few Pinterest boards…they’re so secret, I can’t even find them. But, if this series was ever made into a movie, I’d cast Michael Easton for the role of Dr. Raimond Banitierre. Mr. Easton has played the naked guy on Ally McBeal (remember him?), a cop on One Life to Live, several different doctors on General Hospital and Vampire Caleb Morley on GH’s spinoff, Port Charles.
Plotter or Pantser?
Monsters & Angels was written by an absolute pantser. The only detail I knew was the final line…getting there was like riding an experimental roller coaster during an epic black-out. Since then, I’ve made detailed outlines just to keep track of details and twisty plot threads. I even have a story board as tall as me, filled from top to bottom with index cards, post it notes and pictures.
How do you develop characters?
Even though I use personality tools and extensive characters studies while writing a story, that only happens after a character steps from the fog and introduces him or herself. For me, meeting those strangers and delving into what makes them tick, is the most exhilarating part of writing.
What was the most fun blog post/interview you’ve ever done?
During my Monsters & Angels blog tour, I wrote a Top Ten List of settings that sparked epic scenes:
- Scottish Highlands—The basement of a ruined castle > in progress
- St. Augustine, Florida—A long pier lined with gas lanterns and shrouded in fog > in progress
- Glass Cathedral—Deep in an ancient forest > in progress
- Legendary go-go bar on the New Jersey shore > early stages
- Château de Chambord, France – On the double helix staircase > Raimond-the prequel
- Nottoway Plantation, Louisiana—The white ballroom > Monsters & Angels
- French Quarter, New Orleans—Secret séance room > Monsters & Angels
- Newport, Rhode Island—Haunted mansion > Cobalt Point, The Box Under The Bed
- Jackson Square, New Orleans—Christmas Eve Mass at St. Louis Cathedral > in progress
- Garden District, New Orleans—Tomb of the Weeping Angel > Blood & Diamonds
What’s a favorite quote of anyone besides you, and one from you?
“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” -Dalai Lama
“What he said.” -Anne Marie Andrus