Jessica MacIntyre was born in Sydney, Nova Scotia and raised in the tiny rural community of Soldiers Cove. A habitual daydreamer, MacIntyre was sent to the principal’s office many times during her school years for not paying attention in class. In 1998 she moved to Dartmouth, Nova Scotia with her husband and began writing seriously a few years later. Her first novel, “The Vampires of Soldiers Cove” is available now on Amazon and is the first in the “Vampire Island” series. MacIntyre has also published a work of Paranormal Erotica titled, “The Slave Queen”, also for sale on Amazon.
She lives in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia with her husband and two children.
What inspires you to write?
I write because I have something to say. I write about things that have moved me in some way or things that have made me angry. I have always loved to entertain people as well. A large part of the fun of writing is getting to share it with others and having them be taken with it. I love when people tell me they read my book in a single sitting or they didn’t get anything done while reading my book because they were so engrossed in the story.
Tell us about your writing process.
I like to think about my story for a long time before I even write a word. I’ll make notes along the way so I don’t forget the good ideas, but basically I have what I call an ‘incubation’ phase. The story has to live only in my imagination for a time before it’s ready to come out. It’s much like being pregnant.
Then when the time is right (meaning the entire story has played out in my head in it’s entirety a few times and I really know it) I begin to write. At that point it’s usually just a matter of typing it out because the real writing happens in the imagination long before my fingers touch the keyboard. Once the first draft is done I put it into what I call a ‘coma phase’. It has to sleep. I need to leave it alone for enough time that when I come back to it I don’t recognize it. It needs to look strange to me in order for me to look at it objectively and edit it. Then I do a rewrite, followed by another coma phase, followed by another rewrite.
After the third rewrite it’s time to share it with the beta readers. I get their opinions, make changes and rewrite it again.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Oh yes. Sometimes they demand to be heard. I’ve had one talking to me recently who was not going to be in my next book in, The Vampires of Soldiers Cove series. I was going to skip over him in book 2 but he wasn’t having it.
I have conversations with them too, about everything! We chat about the big things going on in their lives and the everyday mundane things they do.
What advice would you give other writers?
Write! Writing a book looks like an overwhelming task when you see it all as one big thing so break it down. When I was writing The Vampires of Soldiers Cove my word goal every night was 1000 words. That’s not a lot at all. If you do that every night for 3 months you’ll have a first draft. Don’t let other writers on Facebook, etc intimidate you with their word output. Some will brag that they wrote 5000 words today. Don’t compare yourself. They could have written 5000 words of tripe that they’ll have to cut out later. Better to have 1000 hard fought words of story than 5000 words of filler.
And don’t judge your first draft. Hemmingway said, “The first draft of anything is always s***”. That’s a direct quote and he was right! Don’t argue with Hemmingway, the man was a genius. The only thing that can’t be fixed is a blank page, so just write it!
How did you decide how to publish your books?
After much thought and research I decided to self publish. It was the right decision for me. I talked to a lot of writers online who were published traditionally and what I found out was that new writers get almost nothing for an advance, and a budget of zero dollars for publicity. What tiny advances they got they had to then put into promoting it themselves. All of that plus they ran into editors who wanted to change their story, change their title and they had NO say in the cover.
I like my creative control and I had no desire to change anything about my story.
Plus, why would I spend years and years looking for the approval of one person who will tell me I can put my book in front of an audience when the means to put my book in front of an audience exists anyway?
So far the reviews have been great and I have not regretted never seeking out a traditional publishing contract. I write to be read and that’s happening. Thank god for Amazon!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I believe that publishing companies will still have a role but it will be largely distributional. Instead of publishing houses telling people, “Here are the books we are giving you to read”, it will be the public saying to the houses, “Here are the book we want you to mass distribute.”
They have prided themselves on being the gatekeepers of literature in that they keep ‘bad’ books from being put out there. But look at their report card. Look at how many great writers we now know and love who were rejected by those ‘gate keepers’. They are going to have a hard time letting that role go, and there will be a lot of snobbery aimed at indie writers as the control changes hands but it will happen. They will have to hold their noses and take it if they want to survive.
Readers have the control now and there’s never been a better time to be a writer.
What do you use?
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
Link To Author Page On Amazon