Resistor: An Eerden Novel (Ellinor Book 1) by C.E. Clayton ~ Genre: New Adult Cyberpunk Fantasy
Ellinor Rask has wanted one thing for the past eight years: vengeance. But when Ellinor is captured, she finds herself dragged back into the world she walked away from, entangled once more with friends she would rather forget.
As if that weren’t humiliating enough, Ellinor learns first hand that her magic can be stripped away by a piece of bio-tech—and her ex-boss is happy to leash her with the technology in order to get what he wants. If Ellinor behaves, the device will be removed. All she has to do is deliver a package. One containing a creature created from raw magical energy and discarded technology. Simple, right?
But when her goals start getting people murdered, Ellinor has to decide if the year’s planning, her honor, and even her own magic, are worth the lives it’s costing. Dodging ruthless gangsters, she finds herself on the run with a creature of immeasurable magical abilities alongside her one-time friends. Now, Ellinor must relearn to trust the people she once abandoned. She must put her faith in technology, and her life in the hands of independent contractors, all while racing to deliver the package before it gets taken by force, or worse, the creature decides to make an appearance itself.
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C. E. Clayton was born and raised in the greater Los Angeles area. After going the traditional career route and becoming restless, she went back to her first love–writing–and hasn’t stopped. She is the author of young adult fantasy series, “The Monster of Selkirk”, the creator of the cyberpunk Eerden Novels, and her horror short stories have appeared in anthologies across the country. When she’s not writing you can find her treating her fur-babies like humans, constantly drinking tea, and trying to convince her husband to go to more concerts. And reading. She does read quite a bit.
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Do you write one book at a time or do you have several going at a time?
I tend to only write one book at a time, but I have several projects going at once. So I may be writing the first draft of book 2 while I am revising book 1 and vaguely plotting for book 3. But my characters grow and change too much to write two books at once even if it’s for the same series. And I can’t write two completely different genre books at once as flipping my mindset to those two projects and going back and forth tends to not do justice for either of them.
What made you want to become an author and do you feel it was the right decision?
I’ve always enjoyed writing. I love writing long stories, and never cringed at being assigned essays in school. I’ve always loved making people feel things with my words and the characters I’ve crafted. So when the opportunity came for me to be able to turn my passions into a career, of course I jumped on it! Some days are harder than others, but I’ve never regretted walking away from my corporate job for a moment.
Advice they would give new authors?
There are lots of “How To” books out there on how to get your book out there, or how to craft characters etc. Get those only if you want to, because ultimately, the best advice I can give any new author is to write from your heart, and take your time. If you try to write a story you don’t care about, chances are your readers won’t care for it, either. There’s lots of people who say you have to write to market if you ever want to make money as an author. While there is some truth to that, if you don’t want to write a contemporary romance, or a YA fantasy book with shifters in it just so you can have a book out in a genre that’s really popular, then don’t. Readers will always be able to tell if an author is bored by what they are writing, because they will be bored too, and then they won’t want to read any of your other books—even if they are the ones you are most passionate about!
My second piece of advice is: even if you “finish” that book you love and are super proud of (which you should be, that’s a great accomplishment!) there’s often this feeling of “Ok, I’m done! I gotta hurry up and get this into people’s hands!” and that’s how mistakes happen. You tend to settle for “good enough” rather than something you are 100% in love with, and honestly your book may not even be ready for the masses yet. I take a step back from my books when I finish the “last” revision. I don’t touch or even look at my WIP for at least 2 months before going back and doing another final read through before handing the story over to my editor or getting it ready to publish. The reason for this is: I can see the story with fresh eyes and usually catch so many things I would have missed otherwise because I was just so excited to have this completed book and wanting it to get out there as soon as possible. That was, I think, one of the biggest mistakes I made early in my author career as well, so it tends to be what I tell new authors the most as well.
What is your writing process? For instance do you do an outline first? Do you do the chapters first?
I am what you call a plantser, someone who does a little plotting, but otherwise writes by the seat of her pants. I’ve also heard this method called the headlight method which is something that Jay Kristoff uses when he’s writing as well. Basically, I know where the story ends, what the climax is, I know a few big events that have to happen, and not much else!
That’s what I do first though, after my world and character building is done: I figure out where this story ends, or where this series ends and what big things the characters have to do in order to get toward that goal. I put those bullet points down in a word document as potential chapters, but there’s usually only about 5-8 chapters at a time listed out. The characters tend to drive how long it takes to get to those points within a chapter, or new “issues” for them to solve come up in between. I’ve found if I outline everything in a very detailed manner, not only do I get bored with the book before I’ve even written it, but things change and I’d just have to redo the outline anyway. This gives me freedom to explore tangents and subplots, but still staying a bit structured as well.
I do write in order though. I can’t start anywhere but the beginning of my story and then go chapter by chapter to the end. I know some people like to start in the middle where all the action tends to be and then work out to fill in the gaps of how characters got to that point, but my brain just doesn’t operate that way. But I do like this headlight/plantsing method best for me. It fits my writing style best and helps me always stay excited by what I’m writing.