Rose Gott: What are some of the questions that you ask yourself about your characters or the story line that help you to develop your story? How do you decide how much detail to use when world building? When doing a rewrite, how do you keep from confusing yourself?
I really do play things by ear, perhaps more than I should. I suppose I ask myself what the character wants most, what would frighten the character most—you know, what’s the worst that could happen? And then I make the worst happen.
It’s not a science, though, more like instinct. I know these characters, but I also discover them, too, as I write. I have false starts. The hero of the upcoming IN THE DARK OF DREAMS had a very different introduction and background in my first draft—and he was also a lot less interesting, too.
As for details…again, instinct. If it bogs the story down, I take it out. You need to have just enough to immerse the reader, but not so much that the details become a burden.
Actually, I love rewrites because they help clarify everything! I’m only confused when I’m writing the first draft. Revisions are sometimes the best part of the process.