Our on-going interviews with Cool Authors, Cool Books
Dorothy Hearst author of The Wolf Chronicles
We have said before that for some authors, characters demand their stories to be written. Dorothy would agree. Dorothy writes about wolves.
I gave their story absolutely everything I had. There is something so humbling about having been given the gift of a great story idea. I felt so grateful but also a little stunned. I wondered why me? Why did they come to me of all the people in the world, when I’d never written anything before? Once I’d accepted the challenge, it felt like a huge responsibility. I had to learn my craft, and I couldn’t give up because the wolves were counting on me. Like many writers, I often feel that I’m an imperfect tool for sharing the messages the universe is trying to send through me. But I’m happy with Kaala’s story. I’m happy I got to tell it and that I turned it into something I’m proud of.
The first book in the trilogy The Wolf Chronicles began as a short story and that story had a long incubation period. She put in away for years before the story came back.
Well-meaning people will tell you that they wrote a twenty-page memo for work over the weekend, so you should just write the book and be done with it. Ignore them. It’s not the same thing. Know that writing creative work comes from a different place and honor the process and the journey.
Other than that, keep showing up at the page and trust that the idea will mature. Some ideas turn into stories and books very quickly, others take a long time. You do, however, need to be there, writing as often as you can so that when the story is ready, you’re ready for it. Then there are times when you do need to push through to write a story, even if it doesn’t feel ready. Obviously, if you’re on a deadline you need to do so, but also if you’re blocked. Sometimes you need to attack a story. Part of the process of learning to be a writer is learning, through trial and error, which is which. But stories have their own schedules and it’s important to honor that and to know that you aren’t wasting time if it takes a while to find what the story is.