In this post, I’ll tell you some of the things I learned when Shannon Hale http://www.squeetus.com/stage/main.html spoke in Rick Walton’s class. Shannon said when she writes, she is led by the story—not by what might be expected. She writes 2.5 hours four days a week. She writes an outline, but she thinks about each book for about a year before writing it.
She said each writer needs to figure out their own process for writing. She said a writer must write to his/her internal editor. She said there is discovery and creation in writing a story. She said if an editor or someone tells you something is wrong with your book, they are always right. But if the editor or person tells you what is wrong, (and Rick added or how to fix it) they are always wrong.
Someone in the class asked Shannon how she reconciles her beliefs with writing in the fantasy genre because it calls for writing about things that are not true. Her answer was also significant to me. She said that fantasy is not meant to try to convince people of truth, because, it is, after all, fiction. Stories are valuable because they make people think.
Shannon said her favorite thing about being a published author is being able to meet all kinds of different people. I love Shannon’s books and found her to be a delightful speaker.