Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Inside Info

Recently there have been some questions that are asked of Toni and I all the time and I thought that maybe I could answer some on the blog. One of my author friends did this on his blog and I thought it was a good idea.

I'll start with the one we are asked the most, and the one that was suggested by a friend of mine for a good post: How does it work to write with a partner?

I first want to say, this is a loaded question. Why? Because there isn't a "one way" that we work together. Almost every time we get together, we do something new. It's not like we have a "set" agenda. We decide when Toni gets here what the priority is for that day.

Sometimes the priority is getting through the rewrite on the next chapter so we have it to send to our critique partners. Other times it might be working on the outline or some marketing issue. And still there's times where going through the critiques and fixing the most recent chapter is the most important.

But we do have an overall sequence, you know, the big picture of our collaboration. 

1. I usually write the rough draft. Then I try to clean it up a little before Toni and I work on it.

2. We rework one scene at a time usually. Toni works a full time job so we only have so much time together. Saturday's are the best day for us because we have at least 4 to 5 hrs. 

3. We read each line together and decide how to rewrite it. Usually there are discussions on the scene, setting, what information needs to be added, and the like.

4. After we have revised a chapter it goes to Robin and Janet. We try to give each other at least 2-3 days to have time to make corrections at home and then we meet on Thursday's and go over all of our chapters.

5. After Toni and I have fixed the chapter per the ladies critiques, we read through it and send it off to our secreted partner in crime, Michael. (Not to be mixed up with Mikey our cover artist)

6. Then we revert back to step one.

So as you can see, there's a lot to it. In between there might be an issue, for example: Today the first thing we did is sign up for Author Central with Amazon, (which we just found out about) and called them about an issue with cataloging our books. Then we worked on the first scene of chapter 4 in Lore.

When we aren't together we work on different things at home. I have been writing Lineage, the next compendium, so that it's ready when we get through Lore. I also work on social media stuff and any trips to the post office, ect..

Toni has been entering all of our information for taxes and any other things she can do a lot easier than me. 

It is a team effort, but now that we have settled in and have found our best way to organize and prioritize, writing has become a lot more enjoyable. Yes, we are sisters and fight once in a while, but we've learned to sit down and talk about anything that's bothering us. We compromise and consider each other's feelings and roles in our adventure together.

No, it's not perfect, and neither are we, but we have figured out what works for us. I really love writing with my sister and look forward to it each week. I wish we could get together more often but Toni still has to work full time for now. We are hoping as more and more books get published that will change and she can at least go to part time so we can get books out faster.

Well I hope this answers most people's questions of how we write together. It's not for everyone, but if you can swing it, it is nice to have someone to write with. Writing is a lonely job otherwise.

Until Friday, have a great week!

Love, Lisa


  1. Great post, and thanks for explaining. I imagine that other authors who are considering a collaborative effort would appreciate the insider information. :)

    1. I say whatever works for them, this is what has for us. It is tough to do, but well worth it to me! ;-)

  2. Lisa,

    I think it's nice to have someone to write with. It's even more special if it's a sister. I'd love to do that with my sisters, but there is only one that has any interest in writing and she isn't as serious about it as I am. She gets to it if it stikes her and she has nothing else to do. Also her grammar is worse than mine, but she does have a good imagination. The others have NO time for anything after their jobs and families, and would rather veg on the net or in front of the TV instead of writing stories. At least there are three of us that read, but it takes one of them about six months to read one book.

    You and Tony are lucky to be so dedicated to the cause and have each other.

    I wish I had known you didn't know about Author Central. I could have told you long time ago.


    1. Sounds like you do have some writers in your family. You never know what could happen in the future?! It is hard work but worth it!

  3. A team effort is ideal if the team members are right. I couldn't manage the A to Z Challenge without a team effort. It's good to have the support and to have the back up when it's needed. Sounds like you have a solid team behind you.

    An A to Z Co-Host
    Tossing It Out

    1. So far so good Lee! Good people, good team! I enjoy it very much! Thanks for the post!