A Little Something About Jordan:
Jordan is a 23 years old female author who has been writing for about 10 years, at the same time - creating my fantasy world of Arathia for eight. Self publishing since the tender age of 19 and having a total of five books in Arathia - she is also an accomplished artist. , Currently, she is in the process of transitioning to Wattpad fully with those former projects as she decides her next steps. To add to her credit, Jordan is a co-host of the podcast Critical Converse and a head leader of a story telling start up called Multi-Strike Entertainment.
Questions and Answers:
1. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I had known from a young age I wanted to write, coming from parents who both are creative in that aspect. I’d been reading my whole childhood and eventually starting writing when I was in late elementary school.
2. How long does it take you to write a book?
That really depends, though on average about a year, all drafts included.
3. What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
Ideally, I like to be up early in the morning and have all my writing for the day done by noon. I can do upwards of 20k words in a day if I have the time, though really it depends on the day and what’s going on in my life.
4. What would you say is your unique writing quirk?
My boyfriend would say my unique brutality, though I would say my ability to bring characters and my world to life. I try and add depth and make each character stand out on their own. However, I definitely do not shy away from putting them through plenty of pain along the way, as long as that’s the direction the story is going.
5. Whether it be traditional, self, or story book apps. How d you find the publishing process?
I have actually gone a few routes. Originally I had started out as a fan fiction writer online to get feedback, and eventually published a book through a self publisher that I was not pleased with. I found another I loved, though I now have had issues with that so I am moving some of my published novels onto Wattpad as new editions alongside some Wattpad exclusive stories to try and gather more of a following and community, which is the biggest reason I went into writing. I take it all as day by day process with hits and misses. Everything has a season and I love having the flexibility of self publishing in any fashion.
6. How much of your writing process involves research in your subject matter or plot?
I don’t have to research too much, though I always have a web browser open for that just in case.
7. When did you write your first book and how old were you?
I began writing my first story when I was about 12 years old, though I started my first published novel a few years later at 15. I published The Flames of Arathia originally at 19, though as of this year at 23 I published the second edition which I am now also putting on Wattpad
8. What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Two of my favorite things are traveling and concerts. Obviously with the state of the world that is not as easy, so I’ve been enjoying watching anime and reading manga with my boyfriend. I do also draw on the side and simply like to keep busy in any capacity.
9. What does your family think of your writing?
My father’s side of the family always downplayed my writing heavily, though my mother’s side is very supportive. My boyfriend is my greatest cheerleader though and I am grateful to have enough supportive people in my life otherwise to keep me going.
10.What was one of the most surprising things you learned about yourself in creating your books (characters, location, plot)?
One of my former therapists gave me a piece of advice that I still carry with me. You can learn so much about your mind by analyzing your writing. Currently, I would say my character Elvyr from The Legacy Trials has taught me the most. I never intended for him to have the story arc he does, though I see now that it comes from a place of healing for me. I told a story I needed to for myself, one of freeing oneself from abuse and learning to stand on your own in that aftermath. Writing him was one of the highlights of my journey not only as an author but a human being.
11. What is it you particularly like about the genre you write?
I write fantasy primarily and I love bringing a sense of realism to it. I don’t shy away from harder subjects because life has those subjects and it allows me to tell stories that can not only be an escape for my readers but a way to reflect and grow. That darker side of the genre has let me really dig into my creativity and bring to life stories and characters I never imagined I’d have the honor of creating.
12. Do you have any suggestions to help others become writers? If so, what are they?
To young writers, do not be afraid of fan fiction. It can be a great tool in terms of honing your craft, and can help you find your voice. I still use characters and plot points from my fan fictions in my current projects and I am even rewriting one of them despite having published multiple books. Also, rewrite word for word when it comes to the second draft. I’ve had stories entirely change by doing that, plus it’s super helpful (and fun) to realize you only have to compete with yourself when it comes to your writing.
13. Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I have two amazing beta readers who remind me why I love doing what I do. They fall in love with my characters and fantasy world of Arathia the same way I do but bring their own unique views. I love hearing back from anyone that reads my stories, as for me it’s about the community more than the money.
14.Do you like to create books for your target audience?
I like to add in some books that are meant to attract a certain audience every once in a while. I have a story on Wattpad called The Secrets We Hold which is built upon certain tropes and ideas in modern fan fiction, from friends to lovers, to fan wakes up in the world of her fandom. That said, I also love to break those tropes and create something different, spinning familiar ideas on their heads.
15. What do you think makes a good story?
Create a world that stands out with characters your readers can connect with. I write very character driven stories and so I always aim to allow my characters as much depth as I can possibly give.
16. How do you handle writers block and what do you tell other aspiring authors who may be fighting or fearful about hitting that wall?
Honestly, I just take a break. Sometimes I go to another story, other times I step back from writing altogether for a month. To aspiring authors, it isn’t scary to see writers block. It’s simply a sign to step back and take a break. When you come back, you can have new perspective. Don’t try and force the plot forward if it isn’t working. It will show that it’s forced.
I envy fantasy writers. It takes great talent and effort to write a genre that can be extremely complex and rooted in known mythologies. And I for one, cannot wait to visit her world of Arathia.