1. What is something you love the most about/when creating a new story?
The thing I love most, the thing that always seems miraculous to me, is how the story sometimes seems to come together as if it were already written somewhere deep inside of you. There's an alchemy to writing, a magic. You'll start out in the morning with a vague idea of where you're going and then as you're working, you'll realize that something you just wrote connects back to something 100 pages earlier. You didn't consciously lay that groundwork, but there it is. This "magic" happens at different times with different books. Sometimes it happens during your first draft, and that's a pretty gratifying experience. Sometimes it doesn't come until deep into revisions. You have to take a leap of faith when you start something new, that you'll get to this place.
2. Do you keep a writing schedule/have a specific kind of routine?
When I'm drafting/revising, I'm pretty disciplined (all those years of working as a journalist helped with this). After I get the kids off to school, I head straight up my office. And I often work until 2 or 3, when I have to go pick up the girls. My desk gets really messy with coffee cups and dirty plates and often by quitting time, I've neglected to eat/shower/ think about dinner/make the beds. Some days, I'll wrap up sooner. If I know I've hit a good end point or I'm hitting a wall but mostly I'll try to put in a full day's work. I try not to let other things, like email and social media interfere when I'm at this stage. I'm not always so successful. The other times are less structured. I might spend a few hours working on marketing ideas, or writing a blog post or some business aspect of what I do and then do something fun, like work in the garden or go on a school field trip with my kids. I just spent two years writing back-to-back books, so there hasn't been a lot of time for the less structured days. I'm looking forward to things being a bit more mellow for a while.
3. If you could spend 24 hours with a character from each of your books, which ones would you choose?
You're making me choose? Let's see. From If I Stay, Mia. From Where She Went, Adam. Those are the obvious ones. From Just One Day, Dee, Allyson's best friend. I wish he were real. And from Just One Year, Kate. You'll know what I mean when you read that one.
4. What is your favourite word?
5. What one thing do you always need, so that you can write?
Thank you so much for answering my questions, Gayle!
Gayle's books go by the names If I stay, Where she went, Just one day, and soon to be published Just one year.