We’re so pleased to welcome author J.K. Pendragon on the tour for their new novel, Junior Hero Blues. J.K. tells us their must-haves for writing, and also be sure to check out the giveaway details below.
Five Writing Must-Haves
Today I thought I’d talk about writing a bit. Specifically, five things that I have to have to get me in the mood to write. Hope you enjoy!
I have to have tea. It’s not an option. I don’t know if it’s the caffeine, or the ritual, but the words just don’t start flowing until I’m about halfway into a mug of black (or sometimes green) tea with lots of cream and sugar. Sometimes I’ll sit down to write, not be able to, and realise it’s because, duh, I don’t have any tea. This becomes a bit of a problem in the summer when it’s scorching hot and the last thing I want is a big mug of piping hot tea. I’m working on the perfect recipe for iced tea. Jury’s still out on whether it works as well, but I’ll let you know.
#2. Airplane Mode
Yup. I’m a terrible, terrible procrastinator, and the little google chrome icon is right there at the bottom of the screen and it’s just so tempting! I’ll be trying to write and the next thing you’ll know I’ll have been browsing tumblr for hours. (Just one more page!) Literally I have to turn the internet off, go to tumblr, click the “next” button and have “webpage not available” pop up to remind me that, oh yeah, I’m supposed to be writing. Damn. Not that I don’t still end up wasting hours of time on the internet when I’m supposed to be writing, but the act of actually turning the internet on and off creates a bit of a division between working and break time which is really useful for me to keep on track when I am actually supposed to be writing.
#3. An Outline.
I hate outlining. What happens next? Damned if I know. Sitting down and writing down an outline is one of the most excruciating parts of being an author, but it’s absolutely necessary, because once that outline is done, it’s smooth sailing. No more sitting at the computer trying to write a scene but being distracted because wait, what is this scene even about? What are my characters doing? Why are they here? Writing goes so much better for me when I can focus on the characters’ feelings and the details of the scene itself, instead of being distracted trying figure out what happens in the actual plot. I still hate outlining though. Why can’t someone do it for me?
#4. A Location other than Bed.
I spend a lot of time in bed. Like, most of the time that I’m not out of the house or at work, I’m in bed. Maybe it’s a depression thing, maybe it’s an introvert thing, maybe it’s just like, why would you want to hang around in the living room wearing uncomfortable jeans and a bra/binder when you could be sitting in bed in PJs? The problem is I can’t write in bed. It’s my designated relaxing spot. Therefore, I also need a designated working spot. Right now it’s the couch, but since I moved I actually have been spending more relaxing time on the couch (still in PJs of course) so I’m thinking about getting a “writing armchair” or even *gasp• a desk. We’ll see though. Don’t want to get too carried away.
#5. Silence, Damnit!
Hey lady in the townhouse across from us, literally everyone can hear you screaming at your kids 24/7. We know all about your life and your children’s various failings. We know that MycKenziey doesn’t listen to you and that you’re so disappointed and maybe your parenting method of just screaming at your children all day every day isn’t like… working? Maybe you could try something different? Maybe there are other people in this complex who are trying to do stuff and who get distracted by noise? Oh, and upstairs neighbours of the basement suite I used to live in, I know you’re probably as loud as ever, but maybe think about using your indoor voices when you’re, you know, indoors. Also, when you leave your dog at home all day he whines… all day. And (this has nothing to do with writing) but please don’t come home from partying at 3am and turn your club music on full volume so that you can continue the party at home. There are people living in close proximity to you. Sometimes they are trying to write. Sometimes they need some semblance of silence to concentrate. *Sigh…* One day I will live in a cottage in the middle of the woods away from other people. One day… I’ll probably end up screaming at squirrels then instead. Such is the life of an author.
Anyway, I hope you’ve enjoyed this insight into my very glamourous life as an author. For more witticisms and immature complaining, check out JUNIOR HERO BLUES! (I put a bit of myself into all my characters, of course.) Thanks for reading and don’t forget to leave a comment with your name and email address for a chance to win one of three $15 Amazon gift cards!
About the Book
Last year, Javier Medina was your average socially awkward gay high schooler with a chip on his shoulder. This year, he’s . . . well, pretty much the same, but with bonus superpowers, a costume with an ab window to show off his new goods, and a secret identity as the high-flying, wise-cracking superhero Blue Spark.
But being a Junior Hero means that Javier gets all the responsibility and none of the cool gadgets. It’s hard enough working for the Legion of Liberty and fighting against the evil Organization, all while trying to keep on top of schoolwork and suspicious parents. Add in a hunky boyfriend who’s way out of Javier’s league, and an even hunkier villain who keeps appearing every time said boyfriend mysteriously disappears, and Blue Spark is in for one big dollop of teenage angst. All while engaging in some epic superhero action and, oh yeah, an all-out battle to protect Liberty City from the forces of evil.
Welcome to the 100% true and totally unbiased account of life as a teenage superhero.
About the Author
J.K. Pendragon is a Canadian author with a love of all things romantic and fantastical. They first came to the queer-fiction community through m/m romance, but soon began to branch off into writing other queer fiction. As a bisexual and genderqueer person, J.K. is dedicated to producing diverse, entertaining fiction that showcases characters across the rainbow spectrum, and provides queer characters with the happy endings they are so often denied.
After writing in the romance community for several years, Junior Hero Blues is J.K.’s first book for young adults. Having been very positively affected by the queer books they came across as a teen, J.K. hopes their young adult books can have a similar effect on teens who may have a harder time finding books about people like themselves.
Notable works by J.K. Pendragon include Ink & Flowers, a contemporary romance novel with coming out themes, and To Summon Nightmares, a horror-fantasy that follows the journey of a young trans man into a world of magic and danger. To Summon Nightmares is the winner of the 2015 Rainbow Awards’ Best Transgender Fiction award. J.K. also contributed to Less Than Three Press’s Geek Out: A Collection of Trans and Genderqueer Romance.
J.K. currently resides in British Columbia, Canada, with a boyfriend, a cat, and a large collection of artisanal teas that they really need to get around to drinking. They are always happy to chat, and can be reached at email@example.com and on twitter @JKPendragon.
To celebrate the release of Junior Hero Blues, three lucky winners will receive a $15 Amazon Gift Card! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on November 12, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!