No, I’m not delusional, thinking my little, (as yet unfinished), project is going to rival the likes of The Twilight Saga, Harry Potter, The Hunger Games or 50 Shades of Grey. (At least, I’m not that delusional publicly.) I was tagged in The Next Big Thing Blog Hop by Jon over at Jumping From Cliffs. Normally, I’m not one to participate in chain-letter-esque things, preferring to walk the dangerous line of deleting/chucking them in spite of their explicit warnings of death and dismemberment should you do so. What can I say? I’m a daredevil like that. But this one seems benign enough, and offers a chance to show love to some of the bloggers I follow regularly. So I’ll participate. This time. (Plus, I must admit to feeling like a giddy school-girl whenever someone links back to my work, so I felt I had to pay that forward. Earn some Karma points, make someone’s day and all that jazz.)
What’s in it for you guys? Well, before I send you bouncing to some of the awesome blogs I’ve found over the past year, I have to answer ten interview questions about my latest work. Which means, you’re about to get a rare sneak peek at Unmoving, my nemesis of a manuscript that will probably never be finished. Seriously, they’ll bury it with me under a headstone that reads, “Here lies Kisa, the girl who needed two lifetimes to finish one book.” But enough cynicism. On to the questions! 🙂
What is the working title of your book?
This story has had three titles over the course of it’s life, which is extremely rare for me. The first, and I can’t believe I’m about to admit it to the world, was Sleeping Handsome. Awful, I know. That’s why it never made it to the light of day. It was supposed to be a pun on Sleeping Beauty, which is what it’s loosely modeled after, but still. That’s no excuse. I’m blushing from embarrassment now. Great.
The second title was, The Man Who Can’t Be Moved, back when I thought it was just going to be another short story. After my normal brilliance at title selection failed me, I took the easy way out, naming it after the song that inspired it. But it always felt wrong to essentially steal the title, even though, technically, titles can’t be copyrighted. So when I realized that I couldn’t tell the story the way it needed to be told in 6000 words, I re-examined the themes I wanted to explore, searching for something that resembled the song title while still encompassing the darker tones of my version. Unmoving seemed to do just that. Similar in feel to the song, but vague enough to reference multiple themes in the text, it seemed like the perfect fit. So Unmoving it is. Officially. For now.
What genre does your book fall under?
What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
Loosely based on Sleeping Beauty, Unmoving is a tale about what happens when you choose wrong at defining life moments.
Where did you get the idea for your book?
From a song. “The Man Who Can’t Be Moved,” by The Script, to be exact. Don’t ask how I managed to get something so dark and emotionally complex out of such a sweet song, because I really don’t know. I just did. It would take me far too long to explain my strange creative process, so instead, I’ll just refer you to the post where I rambled on about it for days. If you really want to know more, it’ll all be explained there.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I have to give credit to my husband for this one. And not because Derek is in any way, shape or form modeled after him. Just to set that record straight right now. I do have characters that contain elements of him, but Derek isn’t one of them.
We’re both big Script fans, (well, I’m a huge fan; he just indulges me to avoid the fight over the stereo), but I was never that fond of “The Man Who Can’t Be Moved.” It’s a good song, but it just never held my attention the way “Breakeven” and some of their newer ones do. He loved it though. (He’s totally going to hate me for admitting that to world, too. Love you, babe!) I think it’s still one of his favorites by them. So if it weren’t for him forcing me to listen to it over and over again when I probably would have rather skipped it, I’m not sure Unmoving would ever have been born. Although, it was pretty much everywhere for a while there, so knowing me, it would have spawned eventually anyway. He just helped it along.
I hope he likes what came out of it, though. He’s always surprised and kind of horrified, I think, by how badly I can mangle some of his favorite songs when they decide to become Spawners.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
I’ll let you know when I’ve completed it. 😉
Currently, I’ve invested about 3 years and am maybe a third of the way through. To be fair, though, I did take some significant chunks of time off to work on other projects, and had to rewrite the opening scene about a hundred times. It’s incredibly hard to find the perfect balance of jackass and sympathetic hero. But once I found Derek’s groove, things smoothed out. Some. If I’m lucky, I might have it finished by the time I’m 50.
What other books would you compare this story with in your genre?
Hmmm…I’m not sure I’ve really read too many that are similar. Honestly! I’m not trying to be pretentious and think that I stumbled on something original. I just haven’t crossed paths with titles that are like this one yet. But if I had to, I guess I could compare it to the following:
- Sleeping Beauty: For the obvious reason that the core premise of Unmoving is a modernized version of the fairytale with a gender twist.
- Beauty and the Beast: Fans of this fable will recognize the idea behind the confrontation with the witch, and a few other elements. I started out aiming for Sleeping Beauty, but apparently I had to throw my favorite fairytale in for good measure.
- A Christmas Carol: Odd comparison maybe, but when you read it, you’ll see. There are definite echoes of the whole Ghosts of Christmas thing.
- Inception: Yeah, I know, not a book. But I loved how complicated and layered that movie was, and while you see that style of storytelling a lot in film, I’m not sure I’ve ever run across it in literature. Maybe that’s because you can’t really do it with words, but I’m going to try. It’s good to have aspirations right? Even if they are slightly delusional.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I don’t tend to think of my characters like this. Partly because I’m a freak and I see them in animation rather than live-action, and partly because I feel like it would potentially color the way I write them. I don’t want other people’s traits and quirks bleeding into my characters from those played by the actor I’ve chosen. But, I suppose, just this once, I’ll play along. If only because it will give you, the readers, a visual frame of reference for the way I picture the characters.
Ian Somerhalder, from “The Vampire Diaries”, has the right broody snarkiness to play Derek, the main character. Plus, he’s pretty pleasant on the eyes, right ladies? 😉 Elaine, (the love interest), is supposed to be the exact opposite of Derek. She’s fair and bubbly and everything positive that he isn’t. So we need a blonde, I think. Someone like Katherine Heigl or Candace Accola (also from “The Vampie Diaries”) would be in the right vein. (Yeah, obviously I’m a big Vampire Diaries fan, what of it?)
As for the witch, she’s a chameleon, appearing in several different versions throughout the story, so we’d need several different actresses to play her. And some bright green contacts. But I think I’ll leave that decision up to the casting director, if and when, it ever comes to that.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
My current plan is that the Synchronicity Series, of which Unmoving is Book 1, will be self-published. My reason is that this series is very intricately tied together. Each book contains scenes pointing to the next one where the seemingly separate stories cross for a brief moment. Like Easter Eggs on a DVD, readers will be able to figure out which set of characters will be featured in the next book and see scenes from the previous one from a different perspective. Which is why I don’t want to risk the uncertainty of traditional publishing, where they may only ever take the one book, or take them out of order. Since the series depends on it’s sequence, that really wouldn’t work out so well.
Also, it’s Urban Fantasy. And the rest of my millions of plot bunnies are not. So while I’m currently working in this genre, I don’t want to be pigeon-holed into it. I feel I have some potentially awesome ideas in other genres that deserve to be heard too. So my grand scheme is this: self-publish the Synchronicity Series, and pursue traditional publishing with everything else. I hear this kind of hybrid approach to publishing is becoming popular, so we’ll see if it works. I just can’t quite give up my dream of walking through the aisles of Barnes & Noble and seeing my book on its shelves, you know?
What else about your book might pique your reader’s interest?
How about the blurb? Since that one line synopsis is pretty vague and I’ve never really divulged details before, here’s an added bonus– the blurb that would potentially grace the back cover. (Disclaimer: It’s still a work in progress and I kind of just pulled it out of thin air, so read it with a forgiving eye please. I’m sure the final version will be much much better.)
After a horrific car accident cost him the woman he loved, Derek Richards checked out of humanity, turning off all emotion except callous disregard. But when a confrontation with a homeless woman leaves him literally turned to stone on a park bench, he is forced to relive every defining moment in his life, every decision he made for the wrong reasons. Had Karma been watching him all along? And is it too late to change his ways?
Now it’s time to play tag. Below are 5 blogs that I follow on a regular basis, some because they’re informative, some because they’re inspiring, and some because they’re just plain entertaining. Why 5? I’m only allowed 5. Those are the rules. But I feel like bending them, so I’ll also point you to the handy widget on the bottom right of the page. (If you’re reading with an RSS, email, or some other feed system, you won’t see it, I’m afraid.) There, you’ll find a list of 19 blogs I happen to think are pretty awesome.
And don’t forget to check out Jumping From Cliffs, the person who sponsored this lovely sneak peek of Unmoving. If I hadn’t already linked back to him, twice, he would have been included in the list below. His sarcastic wit has me laughing on a regular basis. Have fun blog hopping!
- Catherine Howard: Catherine, Caffeinated (Superb resource on all things self-publishing, with a bit of sarcasm on the side.)
- Katie Jennings: She Writes With Love (Some good posts about marketing for indie authors.)
- Publishing Crawl: (A collection of authors, agents & editors that write about everything from writing, to new book releases, to publishing.)
- Robert Watson: An Orthogonal Universe Blog (Still kind of new, with only a few posts, but I happen to know that he has a fantastic novel releasing soon that you should all check out. This is called The Next Big Thing right? 😉 )
- Jay Kristoff: Jay Kristoff– Literary Giant (I love his sarcastic sense of humor, but be warned, his blog’s not really intended for those with sensitive ears. If you don’t mind a little profanity in your snark, then enjoy!)
4 thoughts on “The Next Big Thing: A Sneak Peek at Unmoving”
Ooh! Thanks for tagging me! 🙂
I think the current title, -Unmoving-, is the best of the three. It seems to be just a bit more mysterious than the former.
The blurb makes me want to read the rest of the story, so it’s certainly doing it’s job 😉
You’re very welcome! Hope you have as much fun answering the questions as I did. 😉
And thank you. I definitely like the current title the best too. It’s been the official title for about a year and a half now, so I think it’s pretty permanent. Especially since I’ll be self-publishing this one.
I haven’t done the work on the blurb that you have. It seems like it might be too short, but glad to know I’m at least on the right track with it. 🙂
Literally turned to stone – Ooo…intriguing. Yep, Ian Somerhalder deffo sounds right for the part. 😀
Is the MS taking so long because you keep changing tack? Or are you writing and writing with no definite ending in mind? My early projects failed because I had no ending nailed down. My debut novel worked because it was conceived ending-first.
Thanks for the comment Andrew!
Honestly, the reason the MS is taking so long is simply because I’m a slow writer. I know exactly how it ends, actually. Like you, I tend to come up with the ending first and then work toward it. And I haven’t really changed the path of the story much, aside from the initial section, which probably took about a year to finally nail. It’s just finding the motivation to write around working multiple jobs, and life and blah blah blah. It’s a lame excuse, I know, but I haven’t managed to find the perfect time management approach yet. I am trying, but so far, writing continues to be the first thing that gets put on the back-burner by just about anything else. That’s something I’m really hoping to change this year, though. I even made it a resolution. 😉