Why is writing important to you and why do you think it's an important medium for the world? Storytelling has the power to change lives. In the pages of a book, we can find hope, understanding, a new way to look at the world and our place in it. Writing has saved me more times than I can count. It's given me an outlet, provided me an escape, and it remains something I find tremendous joy and purpose in.
What are your tried and tested remedies to cure writer's block? It depends. Sometimes what I think is writer's block is actually a story-level problem. There may be an issue with plotting or pacing that needs to be addressed before I can move on. Sometimes the block is because I haven't taken the time to take care of me. When I'm feeling drained (which honestly is all of us after the last year) it's usually a sign that I need to stop, disconnect, and go refill my creative well. I listen to music, watch movies, read good books and comics--anything that I can draw inspiration from that I also enjoy. Great creative work always sparks something in me that helps me return to the work with a renewed sense of purpose.
What is your favorite time to write? Whenever I can. A set schedule just isn't feasible for me anymore. I write whenever and where ever I can.
What's the best piece of writing advice you've ever received and would like to impart to other writers? I heard someone say once, that first drafts are just you telling yourself the story, it doesn't have to be perfect. I used to be really hard on myself about first drafts and what I have learned is that sometimes I don't even know what's going on until I'm done with that first run through! I get to the end and say, "Okay. Now I know what I'm going to do." Then revisions begin and I have a much better sense of the entire story. So, my advice is to allow yourself a little grace and give your story time to take root.
What excites you most about being a writer in today's age? The reader interaction is always a highlight for me. I love seeing them cos-playing my characters or making artwork. They are so creative and so talented. I'm so grateful to them and the thing that keeps me going is knowing that I get to continue to create stories for them with new worlds to explore, new characters to fall in love with (or loathe entirely), new ways of looking at the world and their place in it.
Kalynn Bayron's This Poison Heart is out June 29 with Bloomsbury YA.