This post was originally published at Novelicious.com and is now at WritingTipsOasis.com. WritingTipsOasis.com acquired Novelicious.com in June 2022.
Taylor Jenkins Reid is an author and essayist living in Los Angeles. Her new book, Forever, Interrupted, is the first of a two book deal ith Atria/Simon & Schuster.
I tend to waste time on my computer the minute I sit down and then once I feel guilty about how late it’s gotten, I sit down and write until my hands come off or I’ve reached my word limit. For each book, my word limit is different but it’s typically 4k. Once I get 4k down, I can waste the rest of my day.
When you are writing, do you use any famous people or people you know as inspiration?
Not really. Occasionally, I will think of a famous person as an influence but I try not to ever frame characters on people I know. Things get too messy that way!
What is your favourite Women’s Fiction book of all time and why?
Oh, this is so hard! There are so many. I’m going to say Curtis Sittenfeld’s Prep because that was perhaps one of the first female main characters that I really believed in.
What is your writing process? Do you plan first or dive in? How many drafts do you do?
I always know how a book starts and how it ends and the rest of it I make up as I go along. I do as many drafts as I need to until I am convinced it’s the best it can be. It’s usually so many I lose count.
What was your journey to being a published author?
I had written a book in 2009 that got me a literary agent but didn’t sell to a publisher. So when I started writing another one in 2011, I knew it was a long road ahead of me. Luckily, through a number of drafts and a lot of querying, the book got to the right agent at the right time and eventually to the woman who would become my editor.
What do you think is the biggest myth about being a novelist?
I think the biggest myth is that all you have to do is write books. Writing books is the best part of my job but it is one part of a very full time job. You are promoting, building social networks, convincing people to take a chance on your books, and networking all of the time.
What advice can you give to our readers who want to write a novel of their own?
All you have to do to write a novel is to sit down at your computer and start writing a novel and then keep doing that until the novel is done. It seems much harder than it is. Don’t worry about writing a bad book. You can always make a bad book better. The important thing is to sit down and start.
What are you working on at the moment?
I am just finishing up the editing on my second book for Atria, coming out next summer, After I Do.Thanks, Taylor!