Saturday, December 24, 2016

An Author a Day, part 2


Bio: Originally from Milwaukee, WI, JP Cawood studied storytelling at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. She has developed television series & pilots for Syfy Network, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Destination America, History Channel, Lifetime Movie Network, and Pivot/Participant. Now telling stories through books, JP writes science fiction/fantasy because the future is now and imagination is the key that unlocks all great mysteries. As a lifelong student of the mystical unknowns, JP has traveled the world in search of truth, beauty, and goodness. JP has lived in France, Britain, India, and many cities across America. She now resides in Los Angeles.
Genre you write: Science Fiction and fantasy. Love from Mars is a romance with a science fiction backdrop and Sam & The Secrets of the Universe is a science fiction fantasy for young adults. 
Love from Mars blurb: Six people have been chosen to colonize Mars, including the charismatic and noble Ryan Clarke. Emma, a headstrong reporter, meets Ryan at the Martian Six press conference. Despite the fact that he has a one-way ticket to another planet, they can’t resist their undeniable connection. Their whirlwind romance is rocked by one shocking revelation after another as the mission prepares to launch. Can their love transcend space and time? Let the countdown begin...
What’s the one piece of advice you’d give someone wanting to write? Don’t be afraid of what other people will think of your writing. Don’t let other people’s imagined opinions be your stumbling block. 
How do you approach your stories; do you plan everything out before starting, or are you more a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of a person? I love to outline and collect the entire story before digging in.  
Of all your characters, do you have a favorite? I love Ananda, the female lead in Sam & The Secrets of the Universe. The inspiration for her came from my cat!
How long did it take you to write your most recent book(s)? I wrote my first two books in a year and a half. Six months of that were full-time and the rest was while juggling a job.
What motivated you to write your novel? The story for the Secrets of the Universe came to me in a flash. I had the entire outline written in one hour. I like to call it divine inspiration.  
Name three favorite authors and why they impress you. I really like Tom Robbins because he has a really unique style. I also like the imagination of Neal Shusterman. Jean Houston writes non-fiction, but her ideas and experience make her books full of  inspiration and exciting, new ideas.
Would you rather set your story in a place and time you are familiar with, or would you rather research a totally different setting? I like to explore different settings because I can make my own rules. 
Do you have any little writing rituals or quirks? E.g. an object you have to have on your desk, a particular drink or snack. I like to take breaks to walk outside and clear my head. I often come back with new ideas or whole scenes of dialogue figured out. 
How do you own experiences influence what you write? I like to think I am a vehicle or channel for the story, but by being that channel, it’s impossible not to add my own ideals, perspectives, and experiences into the narrative. 
If you were a ninja with a vendetta to whom would it be? OR If you had to throw something into mount Doom to save the world, what would it be? OR If you had a group of celebrities to plan the perfect heist who would they be and what would you be after? I’d have to throw myself into Mount Doom because those moments of sacrifice are so juicy. I imagine I’d come out the other side with a new super power as a reward. 
How do you deal with writer's block? If I am truly blocked, I won’t write that day. I’ll do whatever else makes me feel good and then get back to it the next day. If it’s a minor block, I’ll take a walk, work out, talk to a friend, or read another book. 
What is your favorite part of the writing process? I love the first draft because it can be a natural flow of thoughts and ideas. I truly hate the formatting. That’s the word part for me.

if you were stranded on a dessert island wth only one book, what would it be? The Alchemist because it would inspire me to become the sun, the wind, and the sea. 

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