Excited to introduce to you – C. L. Feindel
Bio: C. L. Feindel resides in central Texas with her multi-talented husband, Noah. While traversing academia, civil service, and chronic illness in early adulthood, she founded the whole-foods blog ACleanPlate.com and now works as a cook, photographer, and educator. She pens fiction in her spare time, with a particular passion for character development and genre-blending. More info about her and her debut novel can be found at CLFeindel.com.
Summary, if needed: With its advanced weaponry, the ghost ship Revenant was supposed to turn the tide of the war… but went missing instead. Ten years later, the Federation’s hold on the three suns is firmly cemented and corrupt in every way, and any Separatist hopes or dreams seem to have gone the way of Old Earth and its dinosaurs.
Grayson Delamere was still a child when the war ended and she doesn’t much care why it was fought in the first place. In the cold, dark vac of space, most lives are short and brutal with or without the Federation’s interference. She’s worked hard and kept her head down, making her living as a mechanic on any ship that’d have her. If she’s broken a few laws and made a few enemies along the way, well, that’s just the way life is on the fringe of the Trisolar System.
But now, someone has discovered all of her dirty little secrets… and will hold them hostage to ensure Grayson’s help in the most dangerous job of her life: To recover the Revenant and rekindle the fires of rebellion.
Q: Do you remember the first story you ever read and the impact it had on you?
A: I’ve been reading longer than I can remember, and I was always inspired by stories of all kinds–not just books, but movies, TV shows, and music, too. So it’s hard to go back that far or say what had the biggest impact on me as a young reader. But I do remember getting a lot of positive reinforcement from my teachers and parents at a very young age, like having my stories put in the school’s library, being allowed to read books of my own choosing while the class read from textbooks, or my dad taking me to the library every weekend even though he didn’t read himself. All of that encouragement and enabling had a huge impact and I’m so grateful for it.
Q: How often do you write, and do you have a special time during the day to write?
A: I feel like I work best when I’m suffering from insomnia. The midnight hours are wonderfully isolating for really diving into your world and your characters. Of course, that’s not an ideal time to be doing anything if you want to stay healthy enough to pay the bills. So I try to get it out of my system first thing in the morning while it’s still dark outside, or if there’s a minor thing that’s really nagging at me, I’ll take care of it just before bed. Being self-employed means I can do whatever I want whenever I want, but I try to stick to a predictable routine for the sake of my household’s health and sanity.
Q: Do you work with an outline or do you prefer to just see where an idea takes you?
A: A little bit of both. I tend to be hyper-organized about everything in life and having a thorough outline to act as a prompt can help me sit down to write whether I feel inspired to or not. On the other hand, just seeing where a chapter takes you can yield some surprising results. Some of my favorite events were completely unplanned. So I try to go in with a loose outline and be open to whatever direction the story might take me.
Q: Is it the same way when you develop characters?
A: Pretty much. I like to start with a general concept–a lone-wolf mechanic with PTSD, for example–and that persona will grow as they interact with other characters or deal with curveballs from the plot. Sometimes my general concept winds up becoming obsolete in the process and I have to go back during editing to tweak that character’s history, which is fine. What I wind up with is inevitably better than what I started with.
Q: Any advice about what to do and what not to do when writing?
A: Everyone’s going to have their own needs, their own style. You’re going to have to experiment to find what works best for you both in terms of getting yourself to write and putting your best words on the page. But I think the best universal advice is to just get off the internet! I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve wasted clicking over to Twitter or checking my e-mail when I needed to be bashing my way through writer’s block.