Natasha Quaresma is an Australian author. At twelve years old she was the youngest talent in Australia to sign a 5-album deal with Sony Music, which she eventually moved on from after having worked world-wide on her debut album. After attending university and studying Journalism and Literature and Composition, she turned her focus to the publishing world where she began pursuing a writing career. In 2013, her debut novel The Elementals – Sansul was published.
What inspires you to write?
Absolutely everything. It could be a song, a colour, a quote…my second novel idea, outside of The Elementals series, was inspired during my studies of Australian literature. There is a story in and behind everything. Unpacking those stories keeps me forever entertained.
Tell us about your writing process.
I do not have one. The only thing I do which could be regarded as a ‘process’ is that I always start with a cup of tea and I write every single day. I have a little cocoon, some music, and I let my imagination go. My editing process is quite different. I write my draft on the computer, then edit on paper. My editor is involved in this part. Then I will leave the work for a little, let it mature in my mind, then go back to it with a highlighter and a bandaid for my ego. I am a writer who fully believes in the importance of character narration, without it, there can be no plot. Plot is carried by characters, but with one dimensional characters, nobody cares about the plot. I outline where each character is going, where they fit in the overall story and where they will progress to…even if it is their death.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I watch my characters, which is much more important. I think if you talk to your characters you may need to see someone about that! In the past you may have been named either a witch or prophet for talking to an entity that isn’t there. No, in all seriousness, I watch them play out their lives in my mind. When there is a love scene, I do have the tendency to shut one eye because that’s just too much.
What advice would you give other writers?
Never underestimate the importance of reading. And rejection. You must inform yourself on your industry, know the key players, where the tide is turning. Have a special place where you write. I always admire people who can read on a train because I cannot. It goes the same way for writing.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I looked at both options. Unfortunately the stigma of self-publishing has not quite disappeared as fast as technology is projecting us into a faster future. Still, many a title has done well and gone on to sell in the millions under a self-published author, and we should all applaud that. Technology means there is a relatively even playing field between the big publishers and the rest of us. I wanted to be a published author and contacted both big and small publishers, though I did not pursue that avenue as long as most people because the process was just too slow. In this world of ‘click and it’s out there’ I wanted to grasp new models of publishing and it has worked out very nicely.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
It looks very bright! Ebook sales are a steady 25% of the market, so books have nothing to fear. What we need is bookstores opening their doors to authors who do not have the backing of a giant publisher. We need more competition out there in front of the every day person.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?
fantasy, drama, romance and crime
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
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