Worst Blog Tour Answers Ever

Posted on 29 May 2014

Once upon a time, a well-meaning friend tagged me in one of those blog tours and I responded in obnoxious run-on sentences that avoid actually answering the questions. Buckle up, guys. It’s time for my stab at the “My Writing Process” blog tour. And when I say stab, I mean stab.

Who tagged me: Tricia Springstubb is the author of many acclaimed works for both adults and children, most recently What Happened on Fox Street; Mo Wren, Lost and Found; and Phoebe and Digger. Her new middle grade novel, Moonpenny Island, is forthcoming from HarperCollins, and an as-of-yet untitled chapter book is also on the publishing horizon.

But who is Tricia really? Here’s a photo of her with a stuffed fox (bottom of post) at an author’s event on an unbearably hot day in 2012. Here’s that time she totally caught me drinking wine at an awards ceremony when I’d previously claimed I wouldn’t for fear of getting tipsy before having to accept the award. (Spoiler: She joined me with a glass of her own like any good friend would.) And here’s a lovely guest post she did for my blog a few years ago. I’m lucky to be in a writing group with Tricia, which means I get to reap the benefits of her thoughtful reading and of course get sneak peeks of her writing before it hits the stores and inevitably wins awards or gets starred Kirkus reviews. Tricia is a kind-hearted and wonderful writer and reader, and I’m lucky to know her. She tagged me in this blog tour, though I have to say she (or anyone) doesn’t deserve the type of vague/bizarre answers I’m going to give. Let’s hit it!

1) What are you working on?

I’m working on a second story collection that so far consists of creepy, dark stories that require lots of cringing and tea breaks and worrying that what I’m doing is potentially horrifying/distasteful/off the mark. And I’m still working on that novel about stars and skin and girls and futures and pasts.

On a non-writing note, I also have these wildly unwise plans to paint nearly every room in my house this summer, which is saying something because I am a slow and terrible painter. It takes me something like four days to remove photos and spackle/sand a wall and then another full day to clean off the dust and then two days to apply that blue tape and then forever more to paint and squint and fix my mistakes and then wash the paint out of my hair. I bought three gallons of paint this week and honestly, just thinking about clearing out the hallway to start painting it makes me want to take a two-week nap. Also, my garden is 96% weeds and I’m considering just changing my perspective to consider weeds the desirable things and everything else invasive. So basically, I want to change the inside and outside of my living arrangements and also write part of one book and revise another, all in three months. Should be a super fun summer.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

This question makes me think of this one time at a Big Fancy Writing Conference when an agent asked me what other books I’d compare my manuscript to and I panicked and went blank. I mean, in regular life I could definitely offer up comparisons, but in that moment I just couldn’t. Sometimes my brain self-sabotages and shuts down with the intent of making me look stupid, but what can you do. Also, in case you were wondering, my agent meeting was one of the conference-organized ones that I’m sure some agents only subject themselves to in order to gain the rest of the sweet sweet conference perks (I don’t blame them). So it’s not like she tracked me down on the dance floor or anything because she was dying for my comparison titles. Of course, I did know someone who asked a literary agent to dance at one of these writing conferences and she politely turned him down and then they had to continue standing next to each other in awkward silence. Anyway, that is apparently my entire answer to this question. You’re welcome.

3) Why do I write what I do?

If you knew what I was writing right at this moment, then this would be a very awkward question indeed and we would immediately drop eye contact. Let’s save this moment for all the uncomfortable questions I might get if one of these books is published. I will say, though, that last night I woke up at 3am with a way to end the story I’m currently working on and it was only after I jotted out a note to myself that I realized the ending sort of explained a big part of my life. But of course the real reason I write what I do is because, like all other writers in the universe, I think that what I have to say needs to be said and that it hasn’t yet been told in quite the way I’m going to tell it.

4) How does your writing process work?

My writing process is fueled by self-imposed guilt trips, green jasmine tea, spider solitaire, ambition, good books, jealousy, lyricism, rhythm, and hope.

This is where I’m supposed to tag additional authors to join the blog tour but I’m not going to because I’m just that rebellious; plus, considering the quality of my answers here, I feel like I have already derailed this portion of our tour. Instead, I encourage you to read the much more reasonable blog tour (blog relay? What even is this? What am I doing? Seriously, I don’t know) answers from Tricia, Kristin Ohlson and Susan Grimm.

Photo: Julia Wolf

2 responses to Worst Blog Tour Answers Ever

  • Laura, these questions were truly a pain in the butt. You spun them into gold. Do not for a single second think that metaphor. Thank you again!

    • Thanks, Tricia. I think the problem with these questions — aside from being generally dull — is that they mostly encourage answers that would be of little interest to anyone aside from the writer answering them! But interviews, even mini-interviews like this one, are always a challenge.

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