Thursday, June 9, 2011

Aspiring Author Thursday: Introducing Patti Nielson

Today I'm excited for you guys to meet Patti! She was one of the very first people to comment on my blog! Even though she shouldn't have, since I sucked at writing back then... ;) Anyway, let's get to the interview! Check out her blog, here.

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?

As far as I can remember, I’ve always loved to read, but when I was around ten I read a book called “The Keeping Days” by Norma Johnson and I knew from that moment I wanted to be a writer.

I love it when I find out people knew from such a young age that they wanted to be a writer. So inspiring.

Do you have a writing schedule, or do you just sit down whenever you get a spare moment?

No schedule. I usually have a list of things I want to get done and then try to squeeze that it between working part time, playing soccer, housework, and kids, so I just write when I get a spare moment. Sometimes it takes me longer than I want to get everything done.

Amen to that! :)

Could you tell us a little about yourself? Random facts? Hidden talents? I know you are a big soccer fan!

I like looking through cookbooks almost as much as I like reading a novel, which is funny because I really don’t like to cook. I love playing soccer, but I hate running. And although I complain, I love my family’s tradition of climbing a mountain every summer.

I love soccer too. I really need to get on a team. It would be a blast, and I'd stay in shape!

If you were stranded on a desert island, what is one thing you couldn't live without? (Besides your family and a laptop of course.)

My soccer team, oh wait, that’s not really a thing – how about a soccer ball and a cookbook on 101 ways to prepare coconuts.

Ha ha! :) But what if there weren't any coconuts? Only bananas? I'm afraid I would starve... Gross.

What is one book you could read over and over and over?

I don’t typically reread whole books, only the parts I love, but if I had to pick one book it would be the one that inspired me to be a writer “The Keeping Days” by Norma Johnston.

I love getting recommendations! I'll definitely check this one out!

What book are you dying to read this year?

Possession by Elana Johnson. I’m totally getting into the dystopia genre. Other than that I’m just trying to catch up on all the books that came out last year.

So excited for that one too!! :D

What genre do you write and why?

I started off writing adult fiction because I thought that’s what I was suppose to write (I know that sounds totally stupid). It wasn’t until I read Harry Potter that I realized that I could write books for kids that adults would read. After that I realized I wanted to write YA/MG because that’s when I fell in love with reading.

I did the same thing. I started with adult and figured out I loved YA. :)

Do you have any writing rituals? Music, silence, eating, etc.

I wish I could have silence while I write, but my computer is right beside the TV where my kids bounce balls, play video games, or watch sports. I really need a laptop. I guess my best writing happens when the kids are at school or late at night. 
Why do kids have to be so loud? He he. Totally kidding.

Where do you come up with your ideas? Dreams, while driving, etc?

My Icelandic ancestors inspired my first book. In their biographies they talked about the idea that hidden people lived on their island. My latest idea is a combination of a news story and a name that I heard. Something about the name just sparked an idea for a character. Lots of times my best ideas come in the tub or while I’m taking a walk by myself.

Those biographies sound amazing!

Any advice for aspiring authors?

Although I’m still an aspiring author, my advice is to learn everything you can about the publishing industry so you know what to expect along the way. When I first started writing, to the point where I thought I had something to sell, I thought I would finish my book in September, sell it by December, and then it would come out a couple of months later. I know, totally na├»ve. Also, have patience (I know I’m beginning to hate that word as well), but it’s so true.

Patience really is a HUGE part of this business. It sucks, but you gotta have it.

Random Writing Question:What would your current MC do with one million dollars?

She’d find out what happened to her parents

Intriguing!! :D Thank you so much, Patti!


Jessie Oliveros said...

So I initially misread the last part of how your ideas come to you, and I thought, "Patti gets ideas while talking to herself?" Ha! Well, I'm glad you don't talk to yourself. Anyway, you'd take your soccer team to the desert island? What about your critique partners? I'd kick a coconut around with you (before sauteeing it with palm leaves and crab legs.)

Anonymous said...

Fun interview, thanks for sharing! Patti's Icelandic ancestors sound awesome. I'll have to check The Keeping Days out, too.

Patti said...

If I had my laptop I would totally need my CP Jessie.

Thanks for the interview Chantele, it was totally fun. I always look forward to your Thursday interviews.

Michelle Merrill said...

Great interview! It's nice to get to know other writer's :)

Robyn Campbell said...

Patti, my pal! Great interview. Shhh, don't tell anyone, but I thought that naive stuff too. Boy was I ever disappointed. Waaahaaaa

I have the ARC of Elana's book. *bragging* :-)

Thanks to Chantele for having Patti over.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Ha ha ha! I'm still laughing over the comment that you love soccer but you hate to run! :-)

Robin Weeks said...

Cool interview--Patti is awesome. I love how your ancestors inspired a book--I want ancestors who thought there were hidden people on their island!

I'm reading POSSESSION right now (nyah nyah).

Ruth Josse said...

Nice to meet you Patti! Heading over to your blog NOW.

Hilary Wagner said...

Excellent interview! Patti, with the whole reading cookbooks thing, you're like my mom, she hates coffee, but loves the smell of it! ;)

I love your advice to other writers too. I don't think writers, published or otherwise, ever stop learning about the industry! It's a strange enigma!

Tamika: said...

I hopped over from Patti's, and I'm glad I did!

Patti, I don't follow a real writing schedule either. My only goal is to write everyday:)

Terri Tiffany said...

Loved this! I always enjoy learning more about blogger friends.

Maggie said...

Awesome interview with Patti. I must say, I am very impressed with someone who can handle mommyhood and writing as well as handle a ball. I have ZERO athletic ability, so when I see an adult woman is on a team of some, I drool with envy. Good luck Patti!

Heidi Willis said...

Awesome interview! I'm always impressed with how much Patti does. I can barely get around to walking the dog. :)

....Petty Witter said...

joining you from Patti's blog. Its been nice meeting you, thanks for a great interview.

Patti said...

Thanks for all the comments, and thanks Chantele for having me.

Kari Marie said...

I love that your favorite book is the one that got you interested in writing. Great interview.

ali said...

I've never even heard of THE KEEPING DAYS, so I'm definitely going to check it out. Thanks Patti and Chantele!