Anne Kelsey is the founder of Dare to Write, teaching creative writing throughout northern New England with her unique series of workshops that incorporate fun and laughter into each session. Anne’s work has been recognized by numerous publications, including New Hampshire Writers’ Project, Writer’s Digest, and Amazon’s Breakthrough Novel Contest. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and her English cream golden retriever, Kaiah.
Anne loves to hear from readers and writers. She may be contacted through her website at: www.daretowrite.com. Her second novel, Die or Die Trying, the sequel to Deadly Intruder, will be published by Raven’s Wing Books in Fall 2014.
What inspires you to write?
It’s what I love to do! Actually…I love to edit. Writing the first draft is the hardest thing to do. I love to rewrite.
Tell us about your writing process.
It’s more like a job. lol. I am a “planner” not a pants-er. I don’t write by the seat of my pants, instead I make a VERY detailed outline using Excel. After I complete the outline I start writing and I don’t stop until I get to the last line on the outline and those wonderful words, The End.
Yes, I do character sketches on Excel as well. I like to think the important stuff is not eye color, hair color, etc. I think the big stuff matters. What is your characters biggest secret? What memory from childhood still haunts your character? What kind of relationship did she have with her Father? My secret is to make your main character make a BAD choice for a GOOD reason.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I listen to my characters. We don’t have actual conversations. Instead, I listen to the conversations the characters have with each other. I listen to their voices. Especially men versus women. They speak very differently and use different words. Males often talk less. Females usually hold grudges. My secret is to give male traits to females and female traits to males. That makes everyone much more interesting.
What advice would you give other writers?
I’ve taught creative writing for over eight years. Find a creative writing teacher who is passionate about writing and willing to share all they know to help you.
Forget all the social chit-chat and have meaningful conversations about the “good stuff.” The stuff that matters. The stuff you cry about, fight about, curse about, even commit murder over! Every character has their breaking point. The trick is to find the breaking point for each character in your novel.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had an agent, I talked to lots and lots of publishing houses. I did not want to self-publish. It took a long time, but eventually I found a wonderful publishing house that respects their authors.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think physical book stores are in trouble. The business model of bookstores buying books and then returning the ones that don’t sell is no longer a working model. The future for authors is online. The challenge for authors is marketing and getting our books noticed by mass market.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
Suspense, contemporary fiction, political thrillers
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
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