Anne-Marie Clark

FAQs

The following are some of the questions I have been asked either through Facebook, email or at book signings.  
If you have a question for me, feel free to ask! :-) 
  • What inspires you?  I am inspired by a lot of things - I read a lot, I watch crime shows, I travel...  But mostly, ideas just simply come to me in everyday life.  I might be in the shower or lying on a float at the lake.  Some ideas have even come to me in dreams, such as the storyline for Around the World and Back Again.

  • Do you listen to music while you write?  Yes, always.  I am not one of those people who can only think in complete silence.  While writing Arms of a Stranger I listened mostly to Michael Buble and love songs.  With Independence Day there was a lot of Maroon 5, and with Around the World and Back Again I listened almost exclusively to James Morrison's The Awakening, which really sets the tone for the characters.
     
  • Do you hear voices in your head? How do you write your characters' dialog so well?  This is a funny one to me as I always assume people think I literally "hear voices".  I do "hear" voices, but they are character voices, not literal voices. Since I was a child I loved writing or imagining dialog.  It is something that comes naturally to me.  I listen carefully to the dialog around me when I am out somewhere.  A lot can be gleamed by simply listening and observing.  A lot of characters have come simply from casual observation. 

  • How many hours a day do you write?  It depends - before the birth of my daughter I would often write for 12 or more hours each day, but these days I can only sneak in some writing here and there - during her nap time, after she goes to bed, or when my husband is able to watch her in the afternoons. Many days I don't write at all, but I am always, always thinking about my story.  I might be formulating conversations or scenes in my head at any given moment.  

  • Do you always write about places you have actually visited?  Not always, but usually.  I have had a few locations that I have not had the ability to visit (Paris in Independence Day was one of them) and for those scenes I use Google Maps in Street View and research places out with people who can give me an inside scoop.  The internet is wonderful because gives a writer complete freedom to travel places we might not otherwise be able able to go, especially when we need visuals for a quick scene.

  • Do you ever write about things that actually happened to you?  All the time.  It is what makes for an interesting book, in my  opinion, when a writer inserts a bit (or even a lot) of themselves into their stories.  There have been far too many instances to mention, but let's just say that there are many aspects of my personal life in every single book I write.
     
  • Are your main male characters modeled after real men?  In order to get a picture in my head I might model his face around someone, usually an actor or person I've met, but as far as the actual character, sadly, no, they are all figments of my imagination :-)

  • Do you ever get writer's block?   Oddly, no, I never do.  I am always able to write when I sit down to do it.  Not to say I never will, but so far I've had good luck.

  • Do you know the entire story before you write it?  Never.  I know the general storyline, but as far as conversations, plots and scenes, I never know until I am actually sitting down writing it.  I do not work with outlines.  The story and characters go where they lead me; it works better for me that way.  I also never cook with recipes, so maybe it's the same principal :-)

  • What do you use to write your books?  Any special software?  I use a desktop computer, sometimes my laptop, and I use Microsoft Word.  To keep track of my characters I use yWriter. 

  • Do you have any special ritual when you sit down to write?  Not really.  I often drink a cup Matcha from Teavana (sweetened with agave) before before I start writing as it does seem to help me think clearly and write better.  
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