About Nadine Doolittle:
Nadine Doolittle was born in 1960 in Comox, British Columbia, the third daughter of an RCAF mechanic and his Scottish wife. A graduate of Vancouver’s prestigious Studio 58 Theatre Program, her career detoured from acting to casting for film and television with Toronto’s Alliance Films, and finally to writing for the award-winning weekly newspaper, The Low Down to Hull and Back News.
Her debut novel, Iced Under was shortlisted for Canada’s Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel in 2009 (Crime Fiction). Her second book, The Grey Lady, was published electronically by Toronto’s McArthur and Company in 2011 and has been re-released by the author. The River Bride is her third mystery-suspense in the series.
Nadine has two grown children, two stepdaughters, a cat, a dog and a grandson. She lives with her partner Tim in a beautiful house on 22 forested acres in West Quebec where she writes full time.
The author is a member of The Writers’ Union of Canada
What inspires you to write?
I like writing. I’ve been writing novels for twenty years so it doesn’t take anything to inspire me to write. I write because it helps me to think and make sense of people, the world and life in general.
Tell us about your writing process.
I usually know how the story is going to end before I begin writing. I have the opening scene and the closing scene written first and the theme established. From there, I draft the plot using Aristotle’s Incline and write the scenes at each plot point. I’ll often write short bursts of dialogue or description that may or may not get used later. The story will undergo many revisions, twists, cuts and rewrites which is frustrating but necessary. Eventually, it makes sense and I know I have a solid story. Then I prune and rewrite and go deeper into the characters. The whole thing can take a year to 18 months.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I listen to them but I don’t talk to them.
What advice would you give other writers?
Read above your writing level. Read books that challenge your brain and that will make writing easier. My reading level went up when I started writing. And I rarely read in my own genre anymore; I draw on literary authors to prime the pump. The other piece of advice is to write something every day, even if it’s just in a journal. It feels good to do it.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I was trade published twice. When my last publisher went out of business, I had 3 books and no place to go so I published independently and I’m very happy with my decision. I advise new authors to write with the goal of getting a trade publishing contract. A lot of good writing happens when we write with the industry in mind. Then try to get an agent but give this process only 3 months and write the next book while you’re waiting. If after 3 months there are no bites, then start researching self-publishing to decide if it’s right for you and your book.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think it’s very good, mainly because the future of book publishing rests on the skills of new writers coming up the ranks. Self-publishing is an incentive for young writers to put their work out for review and hone their craft. It can be a rude awakening but that writer will keep getting better and better. Trade publishers will eventually draw from this pool of skilled talent, injecting life into their lists. I think the age of the big advance is over which will take the pressure off both authors and publishers to earn out. Writing, reading and having access to reading materials increases literacy for all. Self-publishing is becoming more and more sophisticated each year, a sort of grassroots growth spurt in literature. I love it because it’s democracy in action.
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: mystery/suspense/thriller
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
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