Lucy Turns Pages: Read, Write, Publish, Promote

Lucy Turns Pages: Author Interview: Ellie Yarde, Romance Author

Author Interview: Ellie Yarde, Romance Author

1. Please introduce yourself (who are you, what genre/s do you write in, what books do you have out)

Hello! My name is Ellie Yarde, and I am a writer/blogger. I write in a lot of genres, but I would say my main ones are romance, fantasy and young adult. I have almost endless first chapters, waiting for me to get around to write the rest of the book. I have two books out, both are romance, young adult, short stories from the same series – Escape the Choice and Embrace the Choice. They are both standalone books. The main characters are roommates at university, Ali and Lena. I am working on book 3, which is about the third roommate, Kyra.

2. What are your favourite books?

This is a difficult questions, because I find it very hard to decide which books I like over others. When I was younger, my favourite book was Black Beauty, and I actually have three different copies of that book. I was a little obsessed. Now, I am not sure. The book I have read the most (other then my own when editing!) would probably be The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I took it on holiday once, and made the mistake of only taking that book, because I didn’t have any room in my bag to take any more, and hadn’t yet discovered the joy of e-books. I think I read it about seven times that week.

3. When did you know you wanted to be an author?

I have always loved writing. English was one of my favourite subjects, and my favourite questions to answer were the ones when I got to write a short story. My Mum gave me her old typewriter at one point, and I would spend hours lying on the floor of my bedroom, slowly typing out stories. One of the first ones I remember writing starred me, and whole plot was that I found a horse and the owner said I could ride it whenever I wanted. While I never ended up getting a horse in real life, I did go on to write several more stories where the main characters had horses. There was one I wrote when I was about twelve that reached about 20,000 words, and although I vaguely remember there was basically no plot, I was very proud of the amount I had written.

4. What is your favourite part of the writing process? What is your least favourite and how do you get through it?

My favourite part is what I have since learned a lot of people don’t like – the first chapter. I love writing the very beginning, giving little hints to who the main character is, and what they are like. It’s like meeting a new person for the first time, and finding out everything you can about them, without coming across too nosy. I love world-building and character creation, which is why first chapters are so fun for me. I have at least six stories that, so far, only have the first chapter. I know what’s going to happen next, but I just haven’t got around to writing the rest yet! My least favourite part of the writing process has to be editing. I hate it with a passion. I find it incredibly boring, and would rather be getting on with writing second chapters than rereading things over and over, to find the mistakes. My editing process starts with me finishing writing, and then leaving the story for a week or two, before sending it to my Mum. She’s always the first person to read my stories, and she will point out things that don’t make sense in the story before we start sorting out the typos. It is a good job she is patient, because I know I become insufferable when I have to edit!

5. What is your writing routine?

My writing routine is less of a routine and more of a ‘when I feel like it’ activity. I tend to write in the late afternoons, or Saturday afternoons, but I don’t write every day, or even semi-regularly. I wish I did, but I have absolutely no commitment to anything, and my stories will go ages without me writing anything. Then, I will sit down and write several thousand words in a go. It’s a very sporadic routine!

6. How do you balance writing (and everything else to do with it) with the rest of your life?

As per my previous answer, I don’t really! I go ages between writing, and, unfortunately, tend to prioritise other things over writing. Sometimes this might be editing, or blogging, but it can also be things going on in my life. Thankfully, work doesn’t tend to get in the way of my writing, but tv shows definitely do. The evenings are the time I usually have free, when I could write, but for some reason I just don’t! Some evenings I will edit, and it’s in the evenings when I worked to get both my books ready for publication, but getting a writing routine is something I haven’t managed to do yet. It’s definitely something I need to work on!

7. What inspires you? How do you beat writers block?

My dreams give me a lot of inspiration. I don’t mean my dreams for the future, I mean my literal dreams, when I am asleep at night. I have strange dreams, there is almost story worlds inside my dreams that I visit. There’s a supermarket that I go to sometimes, and one time they had rearranged the shelves. There’s a world with a magic system, and I have to pretend I don’t have magic (I’m not sure exactly why). A lot of the time I’m Spider-Man. Those dreams are quite cool. I write down all the ideas that bloom from my dreams, and when I have absolutely no idea what to write, I have a look at the notes and remember the dreams. That usually gives me something to help beat writers block.

8. How do you keep consistent/write a lot?

Ha! Ha. Ha… Previous answers have shown that I absolutely do not do this! Keeping a schedule is something that seems impossible for me, because I so easily grow bored of doing the same thing at the same time every day. It takes me ages to finish watching tv shows, because even though I love them, I grow bored of them and have to take a break to watch something else. I have the same thing with writing. If I do it every day, I get very quickly burnt out, and then I spend even longer not writing before I start doing it again.

9. Does anyone read or edit your work before publication? If so, how did you find them?

My Mum is usually the only person to read my work before it’s published. For some of the short stories I write and publish on my blog, I will sometimes make my Dad read them as well, but he is not a reader, and doesn’t enjoy reading, even if I’m the author. My Mum is a bookworm, like me, so she is more than happy to read anything and everything I write. At least, I think she is!

10. Can we have a sneaky look at your future plans?

My future plans with writing are all over the place. I have a novel I’m halfway through writing, and that pesky collection of first chapters that I mentioned before. I could give you a little excerpt from the book I most recently published, though. This is from the first chapter of Embrace the Choice, wherein Kyra is interrogating Lena about her lack of a dating life:

I rolled my eyes, picking up the oversized dark blue cup, and blowing on my coffee.

“Seriously, though, you have to like someone. We’ve been here nearly a year. You have given me nothing. I need details! Who is he? She? Come on, anything. I am dying here!” She flopped dramatically forward over the table.

“There’s nothing to tell,” I ignored her spiel and sipped the coffee, setting it back down on the table. It was too hot to properly drink yet. “And would you stop dying, people are looking at us.” I made another move for my bag, but Kyra moved her foot and dragged it away from me, so I sat back up and folded my arms.

“You haven’t been on any dates or anything? Since when—”

“Since I got here. I’m too busy.”

“You haven’t been on a date the entire time you’ve been in university?” Kyra seemed dumbfounded. “What have you been doing with your time?”

“Reading,” I gestured towards my bag. “Studying. Sleeping.”

“You spend too much time indoors. You need to get out and do things!”

11. Finally, what advice would you give to other writers (inspiring, those publishing and those published)?

Just keep going. I think that’s the main thing. It is very easy to get discouraged, with people telling you there’s no way you can publish, or not being able to get a request, or even struggling to get the story down in the first place. There is a lot of negativity surrounding writing and publishing, so my advice is just keep going. You will experience times when you think you can’t possibly publish a story, or market your book properly, and you will want to stop. But if you keep pushing forwards, no matter how difficult it is, you will get your book out there, and you will find those people who will see your book and think ‘I absolutely have to read that’. Even if you don’t end up following the road you always imagined you would, maybe you might find a better road, one that you never imagined would be so good.

My blog, Reading All Night:
My Twitter:

The buy links for my two books:
Escape the Choice:
Embrace the Choice:

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