I usually do some significant outlining before I sit down to write a story. I don’t write twenty or fifty or a hundred pages of outlines, but I do make sure to get the major plot points down. I consider it a map of sorts, though I’m not against veering off-course if it’s what’s best for the story. The Goddess Test has been niggling in the back of my mind for literally years, ever since I’d first really understood the myth of Hades and . Rather than focusing on Persephone’s terrible circumstances, I looked at Hades and tried to see the story from his side of things.
Along the way, I made a lot of changes to the plot, and it didn’t fall into place until 2007 or so, when the idea of Kate going to Hades in an effort to save someone she loved occurred to me. From then on out, I spent a lot of time writing and rewriting the outline, coming up with ways in which everything would work. Sure, Kate would be stuck with Henry for six months, but what was going on in those six months that makes the story compelling? It was a long process, but in the end, it was definitely worth it.
I’ve had characters do some surprising things, but I’m always in control of the story. Everyone has a different way of writing, and I’ve heard of authors whose characters take over and drive things for them, but I’m not one of them. I’m very conscious about what I write and how I can make it the best it can possibly be, at least at that stage of the process. It’d be wonderful if they took over for me though! That’d make my job a lot easier. 🙂
Oh, Phaedra is such a beautiful name! Your daughter’s lucky to have it. I’ve always loved mythology, ever since I was a kid, and it came naturally, I suppose. I read everything I could get my hands on, but I kept coming back to that myth and continued to wonder about Hades’ side of the story. I’m a sucker for ancient Greek culture, and I studied it whenever I could.
While there were certainly challenging parts to writing The Goddess Test, especially getting the ending right, I think the most challenging part about writing the trilogy as a whole is the spot I’m in now. People are reading and reviewing The Goddess Test, and while I don’t read anything but positive reviews – for my own peace of mind – I’m hyper-aware of the fact that people are going to be reading the book I’m writing now, which is the third in the series. And it’s daunting. I can see why a lot of writers have a hard time with sequels, but I’m determined to make this the best of the three, and hopefully that determination will produce results.
My publisher is amazing and asked me all kinds of questions about various scenes in the book, about what I envisioned for the cover, about the different characters, etc. In the end, I really had no idea what I wanted for the cover, and I was floored with the beautiful results.
Ha! No, no, I’m very careful not to do that. Some of them have traits from myself or people I know, but no one is based off of anyone specifically. Not even Kate’s mother is anything close to what my own mother was like.
The Hunger Games, by . , by Orson Scott Card. And of course the Harry Potter series. I reread those books all the time, and they never get old.
I’ve been asked this a few times, and my answer changes each time, so take this answer as you will. I think I’d like to be Athena. Intelligence, power, and beauty, all rolled into one. She’s always stood out to me, and she has the fewest downsides as far as the major Olympic goddesses go.
Besides the next two books in the Goddess Test trilogy (the second, Goddess Interrupted, will be released), I also have a dystopian trilogy coming soon from Harlequin TEEN as well. The first book is called Masked, and I can’t wait to share it with everyone!
Thanks so much for having me, Candace!
You can find Aimee on her website: http://www.aimeecarter.com/
Aimee is giving away one copy of The Goddess Test to one lucky person!
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Ends July 5th, 2011
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