The versatile and vulnerable Sally Engelfried talks about productive weekends, innovative ways to use a writer's notebook, how to find a story's emotional core and so much more!
Full disclosure... I love routines and systems. That's why I'm all about learning about new routines that I might be able to incorporate that will help me make the most out of my wonderful life.
Sally explains that she's not a morning person, so she makes the most out of her weekends. She spends Saturdays and Sundays writing. She starts off with a three-hour chunk in the morning. Then, she takes a lunch break and writes for another two hours. Lastly, she does a quick fifteen-minute chore, and then gets in another hour.
She accepts that some chunks of time will be more productive than others, and that some chunks of time may be spent on tasks such as marketing, instead of creating. She finds that this structured system coupled with acceptance, works really well for her.
I don't know about you but the pressure around having a writer's notebook causes me some anxiety. Maybe it's because as I said above, I crave structure and the term writer's notebook makes me feel like there should be some inherent notebook structure. But Sally blasts that worry to pieces throughout this interview, revealing different ways she uses her notebook throughout our discussion.
Finally, Sally is vulnerable and honest. She talks about throughout her writing journey, she has wondered if she's wasting her time writing because there's no guarantee that all the hours she puts into crafting a manuscript will result in a published book in her hands. But she's found a way to put that worry to rest using her writer's notebook. In her notebook, she explores why she has to write a certain story. She examines what's going on emotionally in her current life that's propelling her to bring a specific character in a challenging situation to life.
For crafting novels that sell, Sally recommends Story Engineering: Mastering the 6 Core Competencies of Successful Writing by Larry Brooks. Check out Sally's Learning to Fall to see how she embraced Brooks' orphan, wanderer, warrior, and martyr archetypes.
Sally thinks that all elementary libraries should have the following books:
The Panda Problem by Deborah Underwood
This super-fun read is a must have for writer's workshops. It turns out it's a big problem if your story doesn't have a problem.
Merci Suárez Can't Dance by Meg Medina
I've only read the first Merci book, but Sally is in love with all three, particularly this book, which is the second one in the series.
Jennifer Chan Is Not Alone by Tae Keller
I love Tae Keller's first two novels, The Science of Unbreakable Things and When You Trap a Tiger, but Sally insists I need to move this title to the top of my to-be-read stack. This mystery is about bullying and shaming people for being different. Reading this book will definitely encourage empathy for others.
In addition, Sally loves developing the children's horror section in her library. She recommends stocking up on titles by K.R. Alexander, Mary Downing, and Dan Poblocki.
Want to win a signed book or a thirty minute author visit with Sally? Leave a comment below.
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11/3/2022 06:37:31 am
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