Just yesterday I mentioned how music plays an important role in Michelle Sodaro’s writing process. I thought it might be enlightening to learn more about Michelle’s process and she was kind enough to answer some questions. She is about to release her fifth book, called Redeeming Trust, which is actually a sequel to her fourth book Broken Trust. These two are romance stories, but she has written books in the fantasy genre as well. Michelle says she doesn’t remember a time when she wasn’t writing, and even has “stories” she wrote as a child in crayon.
JP: What’s a typical word count for one of your books?
MS: My goal is always 75,000 as a minimum. My second book, Arianna’s Honor, is a bit under that, because I didn’t really understand the process as well as I understand it now.
JP: How long does it take for you to write a book?
MS: The first draft usually takes between four and six months if that is all I focus on (which is rare, as I am usually writing on one and editing on another at any given time).
JP: Describe your process. Where/when do you usually write?
MS: Anywhere and any time. I always have a notebook with me. Ideally I write best in the mornings, which is tough with a full-time teaching job, but weekends, I wake up about 5:30 and it’s headphones on and pen to paper. I write the first draft in long hand and then it’s time to type and edit.
JP: What’s the most rewarding part of the process for you?
MS: Having people talk to me about characters that used to just exist in my head, and now that they are on paper in a tangible format, are real for other people as well.
JP: Do you have a publisher, or do you self-publish? Why did you make the choice you did?
MS: I currently self-publish but have started querying agents now that I have multiple books out. The publishing world being what it is today, it is hard to find an agent with just one book. They want long-term marketability and more than a one-hit wonder. So I am sending out query letters and working on getting into traditional publishing, but will continue to self-publish my novels.
I am grateful to Michelle for sharing some of her experience. If you would like to connect with her and check out some of her other writings, you can follow her on her blog, or @MichelleSodaro on Twitter.