Please welcome this week’s featured YA Author, Scott Abel!
Scott Abel is a husband and father who has a love for storytelling. You can learn more about Scott and his stories by visiting his website at abelstories.wordpress.com.
When your world goes dark, can you wait until sunrise or will you give in to the darkness?
For eighteen-year old Parker, a protective big brother who dreams of glory on the high school football field, his entire world went dark the night of the shooting. In a chilling span of sixty seconds, his life and that of his family are changed forever.
Although hailed a hero in the immediate aftermath, Parker makes a shocking discovery that his actions from the past provided a motive for the killings. Overcome with guilt, he begins to spiral downward, drifting further and further from the life he once knew. But when revenge is sought and Parker’s life and soul are in danger, help comes from an unexpected source…an angel named Marie.
A spunky, impulsive guardian, Marie has dedicated herself to saving Parker at all costs. When confronted by a sinister nemesis, she finds herself caught in a desperate struggle over Parker’s fate while facing her growing, but secret affections for him that she can no longer ignore. But when she takes matters into her own hands, will it cause more harm than good? Can she help Parker find redemption and forgiveness, or will she lose him to the darkness forever?
Why do you write?
I write because it’s fun. There’s something about creating characters and scenes that people can really connect with that I find incredibly satisfying.
Why young adult fiction? What is most appealing about writing for this demographic?
My oldest daughter is on the cusp of this age group, and I’d like to write something that she’d enjoy reading. Plus, readers in this age group haven’t developed closed minds yet – they’re completely open to using their imaginations, suspend their disbeliefs, and jump head first into anything new and different.
What are your writing rituals, if any?
Definitely sitting at the kitchen table in the glow of my laptop with a steaming cup of coffee and listening to my favorite tunes on my iPod. I find that music is a great inspiration to me for certain scenes. For example, if I’m writing a sad, emotional scene I’m going to listen to Rob Pattinson’s Let Me Sign. If it’s an action scene, it’s Kutless or Thousand Foot Krutch.
Favorite Book/Author? Why?
The Count of Monte Cristo. I’m a sucker for classics and this is the ultimate revenge/redemption story ever written. Favorite author is a toss up between Dean Koontz and Ted Dekker – they’re the kings of suspense and quirky, compelling characters.
The best thing about being a writer?
Reading what you’ve written and saying to yourself, “Wow. Now that’s really good.” It’s cool when your own written words give you the chills.
The worst thing about being a writer?
Finding that elusive first person (agent or publisher) who will give you your first big break.
What tools do you/have you used to study the craft of writing?
Jill Elizabeth Nelson’s Rivet Your Reader With Deep Point of View and Jeff Gerke’s The First 50 Pages have been he biggest help and I seriously don’t know where I’d be without them. But the most invaluable tool for assisting the development of my writing skills has been the feedback and support I’ve received from my critique group. The unique skills and perspectives they have shared with me cannot be measured.
Would you rather read a good book or write a good book?
Three years ago I’d say read. But now? Write – and it’s not even close.
Favorite literary character of all time and why?
Edmond Dantes. He’s the ultimate in cool.
Top three things every writer should have/do, in your opinion?
Patience. Humility. Sense of Humor.
Best time of day to write and why?
Early morning. I mean like pre-dawn when it’s still dark. The world isn’t up and running yet, everything’s quiet and still, and I’m alone with my creativity – and a steaming cup of java.
Do you write by the seat of your pants, plot first, or a little bit of both?
Both. My first novel, Sunrise, was written by the seat of my pants. My second novel, The Promise Keeper, although a work in progress, was thoroughly outlined before I typed the first word.
What keeps you motivated?
My wife and kids. I want them to be proud of what I write.
What is your goal in writing?
To one day be able to go into Barnes & Noble with my kids to let them look at Daddy’s book.
Can you share a little more about your book, Sunrise?
My YA paranormal novel is Sunrise. It’s about a mass tragedy in a small town and how it affects the life of the main character, an 18-year old high school student. The story is viewed from the aspects of the main character and the guardian angel who is in love with him. The manuscript hasn’t been published yet, but is under consideration by a traditional publisher right now.
How do you balance your writing life and everything else?
One day at a time. I try to sneak in some writing as often as I can during the week – especially early in the morning or at night after the kids have gone to bed.
Any words of wisdom you would like to share with aspiring YA authors, such as myself?
Never stop being a student of the craft and never stop writing.
A Bible verse that encourages you in your writing?
Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”
2 Timothy 1:7 – “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.”
Name one thing you have learned in your growth as a writer.
I wish I had learned something of the craft before I started writing. When I began writing, I knew nothing of deep point of view, active versus passive, head hopping, etc. Seriously, I was a mess. Second, I started querying agents the second I completed my first draft. Big mistake. I cringe at the thought of that hot mess being sent out into the world.
What is your experience with writer’s conferences, if any?
Thank you, Scott for sharing your book and experiences with us. It has been a pleasure to have you on the blog today!
Don’t forget to leave a comment, question, or word of encouragement for Scott below. Until then, happy reading!
Yours in Messiah Yeshua,
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