Friday, January 11, 2019

Interview with author Janet Schrader-Post about The Young Adult Writer's Journey

I have two special guests today. Janet Schrader-Post & Elizabeth Fortin Hinds are here chatting with me about their new how-to book, The Young Adult Writer’s Journey. The book will be $0.99 during the tour.

During their virtual book tour, Janet and Elizabeth with be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit their other tour stops and enter there, too!

Daughter of a Colonel, Janet Schrader-Post lived the military life until she got out of high school. She lived in Hawaii and worked as a polo groom for fifteen years, then moved to Florida where she became a reporter. For ten years she covered kids in high school and middle school. Kids as athletes, kids doing amazing things no matter how hard their circumstances. It impressed her, and it awed her. “How wonderful teens are. They have spirit and courage in the face of the roughest time of their lives. High school is a war zone. Between dodging bullies, school work and after school activities, teens nowadays have a lot on their plate. I wrote stories about them and I photographed them. My goal was to see every kid in their local newspaper before they graduated.”

Janet love kids and horses, and she paints and writes. Now she lives in the swampland of Florida with too many dogs and her fifteen-year-old granddaughter. She started to write young adult fiction with the help of her son, Gabe Thompson, who teaches middle school. Together they have written a number of award-winning YA novels in both science fiction and fantasy.

Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds knows kids well. She spent decades teaching teens and adults to write and improve their reading skills. As a literacy expert and certified coach, she helped both teachers from elementary to secondary and preservice graduate students learn to improve reading and writing instruction. She has taught at both the secondary and graduate level, everything from rhetoric, essays, and thesis statements, to poetry, short stories, and how to write a novel. She has learned to use both sides of her brain simultaneously, but enjoys the creative side the most, learning to play piano, draw and paint, and find time for her own writing since retiring from her “day” jobs.

A “true believer” in Joseph Campbell’s The Hero with a Thousand Faces, mythic structures, she uses that lens when considering manuscripts for Tell-Tale Publishing Group, a company she founded with some friends from her critique group a decade ago.

Wise Words Publishing, an Affiliate of Tell-Tale Publishing Group, LLC: We are a small press, a traditional publishing company bringing you the best in E-books, print and audio books to feed your body, mind and spirit. Our cutting-edge fiction includes old favorites and edgy speculative fiction for today's eclectic readers. Our stories will grab your attention and take you on a fast, exciting ride that will leave you breathless. WW, our affiliate, publishes select literature under our Cosmos Imprint and nonfiction titles under our Ivy Tower Imprint.

Founded in 2009, in Michigan's Lower Peninsula. Our company motto of "excellence in creative entertainment and learning, " informs our artwork, manuscript selection, editing and publishing.

Welcome, ladies, please share a little bit about your current release.
(Janet) I wrote The Young Adult Writer’s Journey with my publisher Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds. She thought the time was right for this book and there was a need. So, we wrote it. At this very moment, I have a 14-year-old grandson staying with me, a 10-year-old and a 15-year-old granddaughter lives with me permanently. I had six kids. I know what’s going on in the minds of teens right now. And that’s the key to writing good fiction for young adults. The world they live in is much different from the world most of us grew up in. It’s so much harder. I hear stories, I understand their hardships and I love them for dealing with school and growing up at the same time every day.

I have a YA Science Fiction series out right now, The Vagrant Chronicles, that has won four prestigious awards. Elizabeth felt like I had the street credentials and the knowledge to write this book and I felt like she had marketing and publishing knowledge to make it better. It’s literally, a dictionary for anyone wanting to write YA, whether they’ve already written books or are just starting.

What inspired you to write this book?
A big push in the back from my publisher Elizabeth Fortin-Hinds who is also my co-author.

Excerpt from The Young Adult Writer’s Journey:
Teenagers make wonderful characters to write about. They are often more uninhibited than adults, braver, more impulsive. Those characteristics can get them into trouble and out of it just as fast. They can be very judgmental and equally self-conscious, hard on each other and themselves. They need guidance, but often won’t listen to it. They fall in love easily, will do anything for those they love, and can show deep compassion for those weaker than themselves. These contradictions are reflected in all great young adult fiction. Katniss Everdeen was so brave in Hunger Games, she offered herself as tribute to save her sister. Teenagers are impulsive. Mare, in The Red Queen, is very hard on herself. She blames herself for her sister’s injury. But when faced with a new world, an outrageous situation, she’s brave and resourceful, accepts her new world, but still remembers those at home she loves.

What exciting story are you working on next?
Elizabeth and I partnered again and are writing a fantasy new adult series called Beauties and the Beasties. The first book is written and being edited. It’s called Annabelle and the Jackal.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I started working as a reporter. You write every day. You get better every day. You learn to accept criticism, edit, write whether you feel like it or not. Since I started as a reporter, covering the high school beat, sports, and school events, in a small town, I discovered I love to write, and I do it every day.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I retired from being a reporter after ten years on the job. My first book was published that year. Alligator Gold is a Cracker Western (Florida cowboys) and was published by Pineapple Press. Since then, I’ve written romance, adventure fiction and young adult fiction. The Young Adult Writer’s Journey was more like writing a very big feature article. I approached it that way. I did my research and consulted with Elizabeth through every chapter. I am lucky. I have enough income to live and write full time.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I hate adverbs, backwards sentences, and I have to write in the morning. If I don’t get it done by noon, I will do something else to forward the work that isn’t actual writing. There are two words that drive me nuts: despite and underneath. They’re both bastard words and make me crazy. My most interesting quirk is water related. I get my best ideas floating in my pool or in my gigantic jacuzzi bathtub.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Free…I really had no goals. My father was a Marine Corps Colonel. I grew up a Marine. If you lived with one, you’d know. When you’re controlled to that point, you take it one day at a time and pray for freedom.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Writing for young adults is so rewarding. If you want to do it, please read our book. It has so many insights into the psychology of the kids in high school today. I learned a lot covering them as a reporter and as a parent, and when I hit a bump writing the book, I went to the source, my granddaughter, Laylany. She’s fifteen and she knows what’s going on.


Thank you for being here today!

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Unknown said...

Thanks so much for hosting our book on your blog, Lisa. We appreciate all you do for readers and writers.

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

James Robert said...

Good Morning! Thank you for the book description.These tours are great and we have found some terrific books so thanks so much.

Victoria Alexander said...

Great post, I enjoyed reading it!

Unknown said...

Thanks for sharing!

Bernie Wallace said...

How much did the story change from your first to final draft? Bernie Wallace BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com