VN Episode 1: Writing Process Blog Hop

ScreenshotI’ve wanted to expand the Virtual Napkins universe into the video realm for quite some time. I set up the YouTube account a while ago, and I’ve been following along with the Vlog adventures of fellow-writer Nicole in a Nut Shell for a while in preparation.

So this week, when Amy from Créatrice Mondial invited me to participate in a blog hop about the writing process, I thought, “Here is your opportunity to launch the video element of Virtual Napkins!” (Read about Amy’s process here.)

And launch it, I have! Also, even though I’ve responded in video form, I have included a text response to the blog hop below as well as more information on the two bloggers taking the torch from me.

So without much more delay, I would like to introduce Episode 1 of the Virtual Napkins Web Series:

As promised, I wanted to remain true to the blog hop, so here is a brief typed version of the blog hop as well as those two brave writers who will carry the blog hop forward.

What am I working on/ writing?

Way too many things, probably. I am definitely still working on my magical-realism novel, A Year Since the Rain. I’m working on rewrites of that project and it should be ready for beta-readers soon (interested?). I’m also still working on poetry. The chapbook, Room 736, is coming along. Those poems are still getting reworking and some are submitted for publication, so once all of that shakes out, I’ll probably put that collection out. I obviously put a ton of work in here on the blog as well.

How does my work/writing differ from others in its genre?

As for the fiction, I think my work tends to land more on the realistic side of things even though the world I’ve created is a magical one. The protagonist of this first novel is definitely skeptical of all of the mystical stuff that he sees, and since we experience the world through his eyes, we see the world through eyes that constantly try to rationalize what’s happening. Additionally, I’m not sure I want to be so different from others in my genre. I love magical realism and if I can write like Rushdie or Marquez, then why wouldn’t I?

Why do I write what I do?

I already kind of answered this. I was definitely a huge fan of the genre in college. I wrote my thesis on Rushdie, and I teach the genre now that I teach literature. I think the hybridity of the genre lends itself to multiple meanings and layers and I like to play in that kind of world with all sorts of possibilities. It’s exciting, I think.

How does my writing process work?

I’m not really sure that it does yet. But I am a huge fan of framing devices. In my work, in my poetry and in my fiction, there is usually something else at play aside from the central narrative. The central narrative is the driving force, but I love to create something around the edges of that story to color the experience in some sort of philosophy or theory. This is probably the memoirist in me–always trying to direct the reader to his/her Truth in some way. That Truth doesn’t have to be what I want it to be, but I think the reader should definitely be considering something larger than the story that’s right in front of them.


Now, as for the second part of the blog hop, I must pass the torch to two fellow bloggers so that we can continue to learn about writing processes and about each other.

First, I’ve tagged Meg L over at The Half and Half Blog. Meg is a truly unique blogger. Her posts are fresh and funny and crazy-consistent. I’m interested in hearing about her blogging process as it seems she is publishing a post almost daily, and it’s always quality stuff. If you don’t follow Meg, go give her a click.

And finally, I’m also tagging DD Wright. Visit her blog here. DD is a poet as well as the host of the weekly Blog Talk Radio program, Poetic Soul. It’ll be interesting to get the poets in on this process a bit, too, as I just know that’s who DD will end up tagging. If you’re into poetry/ art, check out DD’s program every Thursday night at 9 PM.

Until next time!



9 thoughts on “VN Episode 1: Writing Process Blog Hop

  1. This is excellent, Shane! (And it would be a hard act to follow on the Blog Hop.) It was interesting to learn more about what you write and your process. And while I don’t think your chair is disgusting, the comments you’ve received from others made me think of this old computer game from the early 90’s called “Catchum” (or “Catchem.” The early 90’s were a long time ago). You basically had to catch these objects falling. At first they started out slow, but with each level, they rained down faster. The first levels had things like cats and dogs. But one of the medium levels had “Dad’s ugly green chair” falling, so you’d have to scurry to catch all these animated ugly green chairs. And now I’m finished with my utterly useless ramble down memory lane. 🙂

  2. It kind of blew my mind for a second that you said what you did about the memoirist in you, about trying to direct the reader to a Truth. The reason is I have been obsessed with reading memoirs lately. At first, I couldn’t figure out why. But then while feverishly and excitedly scanning the memoir section of my library one recent evening while simultaneously trying to write a post in my head, it hit me — memoirs remind me of blogging. Of my own blog. Of your blog. Of any other fellow blogger that I support. Soon after, I thought I had drawn an arrogant conclusion. Thanks for being on the same vibe, so that I know that part isn’t true!

  3. Okay. So. My previous comment was just on the post. (Maybe I should have held off until I also viewed the video.) Anyhow…That was fun! Best self interview I’ve ever seen! I’m looking forward to episode 2.

  4. I enjoyed this so much. I too have been interested in learning more about posting on YouTube. I will definitely check out your video blog! What a great way to integrate the blog hop into a video blog simultaneously! Thank you for the torch and I shall pass it on with pride 🙂

  5. Pingback: It’s A Blog Hop! Welcome To The Inner Workings Of My Cerebral Cortex. | Half and Half

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