And it’s another day where you get to know another great author. I have kidnapped Rebecca Sky (with consent, I assure you). She’s a member of the ‘Wattpad 4’, a Wattpad Star, and is an all-round nice person who is eager to help others improve their writing by providing some great advice.
Now then, let’s hit it off with the first question…
1. Can you tell us a little bit about your writing journey so far and how you managed to reach 50K followers on Wattpad?
Rebecca: I was never very good at English, but I loved story telling. I’m the oldest of five kids and we were raised without TV and internet (it’s a wonder I’m socially normal…somewhat) anyway, I would entertain my siblings by making up stories and acting them out—my life was pretty much like the sisters in Little Women. But the idea of writing those stories scared the bejeebers out of me. One day, my little brother (who is much bigger than me) “told” me to try writing, and when someone bigger and stronger “encourages” you, you got to listen. Translation: he threatened a lifetime of wet-willies if I didn’t try. So my brother introduced me to Wattpad. I was so scared, I wrote under a pen name, L.J.Michaels, but after a few weeks, reads and comments started coming in and I started to realize people liked what I wrote. And even better than people liking what I wrote, I loved doing it! The moment I typed the first words of my first story, I was hooked, I felt like all the pieces of me that never fit, finally made sense. I am incredibly flattered 50,000 people follow me, and I’m so grateful for each and every one of them. My love and passion is to share stories and they help me do it!
May: You truly made me want to cry there *wipes tear away*. I grew up watching TV and playing football with the guys outside. I think I was more of a tomboy at that age. But, of all things, I wrote tiny poems here and there. One of them, my mother recently gave me and I was like ‘When did I write this?’. It’s pretty embarrassing to read the stuff you wrote when you were 7 or 8 – especially if your mother is watching your reactions as you glance over the text… *whispers* REALLY awkward.
My journey to Wattpad was rather different to yours. I joined FictionPress for a few months and made friends with a girl there. After chatting with Destiny on Skype for a year or so, she ended up mentioning Wattpad to me. So, I migrated over. Made a mistake of posting my whole book on there at once and, because of that, the reads were super low. But, thankfully, almost 9 months later, Gavin Wilson (head of Wattpad Ambassadors and featured content) accepted the story to be featured in Vampire and the reads shot up from there.
2. Could you tell us a little bit about Wattpad 4 and your goals as a group?
Rebecca: Wattpad4 is composed out of four girls who met on Wattpad. We are first and foremost friends and fans of each others work. One day we were chatting about all the Wattpaders/readers who make our life a better place. We wanted to somehow give back to the community who has done so much for us, and the idea of Wattpad4 was birthed. We are often asked writing questions or for our feedback on peoples writing, so we started a read/review/share contests and our weekly twitter writing chats (Monday’s at 8pmET under hashtag #wattpad4). We’ve had the pleasure of interviewing some of todays top authors on our chat, and our interviews book up a year in advance! So that’s flattering. Our goals are to continue to grow in our abilities and careers, and to continue to find ways to give back as a group!
May: A year in advance? Wow. That’s amazing. I am glad you girls are doing so well. It’s always nice to know you’re helpful to someone. In a way, it can brighten up the dark, gloomy days we are faced with now and again.
3. Every writer has a backstory of how they came into the craft, what’s yours?
Rebecca: I kinda answered this in the first question so instead I’ll tell you my favourite ice cream…it’s Hagen Daz chocolate peanut butter!
May: *laughs* Mine is Ben & Jerry’s Cookie Dough. It’s delicious. I swear I have to suppress drool every time I see it.
4. Curveball question time! Envision you are the villain in a story, how would you take over the world?
Rebecca: I would buy the patent to pants and if people wanted to wear pants they would either have to pay me a fee or become one of my pants followers. Once my pants army is big enough I would have complete world domination. (This answer may discredit my earlier claim of being socially normal).
May: This is the most random and out of the box answer I’ve ever seen. Brilliant! I guess I would go the traditional way of creating a bioweapon or a virus strain while being the only person/group of people who possess the antidote. (I’m a huge Virology and Biology fan.) Umbrella Corporation, anyone?
5. Do you happen to have any writing advice for aspiring paranormal and horror writers out there?
Rebecca: READ!!! Then read some more, especially in your genre, and especially top selling books. Then take time to think about why you think they sold so well and what you can learn from them!
May: Folks, while you are reading, don’t forget the most important thing: have tea and cake at your side. This extinguishes the need to go into the kitchen to get a snack…unless your tea goes cold. I’m not a fan of luke-warm tea. Bleh… *shudders*
6. I’m sure you’re a human being. So, what do you enjoy doing outside of writing?
Rebecca: Well, there’s not much I like doing more than writing. But my hubby is in a popular band so I love going to his shows and watching him play, though it’s weird to watch other girls scream for him!
May: Just know that you’re the only girl that matters!
My other half is a computer nerd, so all I hear is about the server towers, motherboards, ram sticks, possible new computer. At least, since I majored in Computer Science, I can understand his crazy ramblings while plotting the destruction of a character’s happiness in my story.
7. Could you tell us about Wattpad Star program, how you got involved, and what it has brought you as a writer?
Rebecca: It’s an awesome initiative from Wattpad to bring their top authors paid opportunities, as well as opportunities for further exposure. When they asked me to join I was beside myself with happiness! I adore Wattpad and what they’ve done for me and for the world (giving easy and free access to reading and writing). The Stars program has done a lot for my career, some big things coming up that I can’t talk about just yet. But I can tell you about the opportunities I’ve had to partner with Athenos Feta, a division of Kraft foods, and Lay’s Wavy Chips to write adorable comedy romances including recipes of their food in each chapter. It was a lot of fun and I can’t wait for more Stars opportunities.
May: For anyone interested in applying for the Start program, I will post a link for you to follow if you’re a Wattpad user. I must say, a lot of the time they probably won’t respond. I don’t know the judging criteria either (most likely the number of followers the user has + their writing ability).
8. Roses or violets?
May: Interesting choice. I love red roses.
9. Do you use any software that helps you with your editing process?
Rebecca: I use a program called Scrivener, it helps me keep organized!
May: I tried that … sort of. I downloaded the trial for 30 days, but I forgot to use it, so it expired. Yup…I forgot it was there.
I tend to organize my files in folders on the laptop anyway. I rarely have problem of looking for something.
10. Please feel free to talk about your current projects and events.
Rebecca: I’m currently working on a gender swap Ben Hur retelling. It’s been super fun! Lots of research, lots of Sparticus watching! And I’m currently serializing a novel called A LIFETIME ACCORDING TO KARMA ROSE on Wattpad for free. The story is paired with awesome custom art done by animator Kayla The Rivera!
You can read that for free here: https://www.wattpad.com/116794268-a-lifetime-according-to-karma-rose-one-o%27clock
And finally some big shiny news. Wattpad and Simon and Schuster partnered up to put on the first ever fanfic anthology featuring all Wattpad authors and I was lucky enough to be asked to participate.
Find out who I wrote about here: http://www.buzzfeed.com/ariannarebolini/wattpad-is-releasing-an-entire-collection-of-imag-7vd#.rvjD7qOx7v
Thanks for taking the time to read about me. Stop by twitter and say hi http://www.twitter.com/RebeccaSky
You can also find me on Instagram @THErebeccasky or Wattpad @RebeccaSky
May: Thank you so much for participating in the interview, Rebecca. I’m glad we got to have a better idea about the Wattpad Stars and your career with Wattpad.
So, let’s head over to a blurb I’ve picked out for you guys to read.
“The Love Curse” by Rebecca Sky
I can’t kiss the boy I love. If I kiss him I’ll lose him forever. ♥ Rachel Reeds has the ability to make any guy she kisses fall in love with her─head over heels, completely, irrevocably, obsessed love. The problem is she doesn’t want someone to love her because she “forced” them with her “ability.” She wants them to love her because they want to…
When she starts to fall for Benjamin Blake, she distances herself. But circumstances beyond her control bring them closer, and the desire to be with him tears her apart. Will she resist the pull of a first kiss, or will she lose Ben forever?
NOTE: original post 27 Feb, 2016.