Adi Rule interview with David Alan Binder
Post date: Apr 8, 2017 5:53:49 PM
Adi Rule interview with David Alan Binder
Bio from her website: Adi writes YA and middle grade novels, funny essays, short stories, and plays.
I also edit. I love editing! Recent projects include fiction, nonfiction; dissertations, video games, enhanced books, and an anthropology textbook (go ahead, ask me anything about bonobos).
I earned my MFA at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier.
1. How do you pronounce your name?
Ah-dee (not Addie). Thanks for asking!
2. Where are you currently living?
I live in beautiful New Hampshire.
3. What is the most important thing that you have learned in your writing experience, so far?
That writing is the goal and the reward. It’s great to have other goals, like publishing, but I try to keep writing itself as my number one priority.
4. What would you say is your most interesting writing, publishing, editing or illustrating quirk?
I try not to read books similar to the book I’m writing. I read authors whose sentences and plots and characters I love, but I tend to steer clear of titles that might live in the same bookstore display as what I’m working on. I like to think it helps me keep certain elements of my own work fresh.
5. Tell us your insights on self-publish or use a publisher?
I’ve gone the traditional publishing route. It’s very important to me to protect my writing time, and I would hate to have to balance it with (more) marketing. I also love the process.
a. Who is the name of your publisher and in what city are they located?
St. Martin’s Press, New York.
6. Do you have any secret tips for writers on getting a book published?
Make your story the best it can possibly be before you send it out. Do your own revisions, get beta readers and critique partners, revise some more. It’s true that you’ll eventually revise with your editor, but it should arrive on her desk as perfect as you can make it.
7. How did you or would you suggest acquire an agent? Any tips for new writers on getting one?
There are wonderful online resources available, like Writers Market and AgentQuery. Make sure your list of agents includes only those who
a.) represent what you write and
b.) are open to submission. Follow their guidelines exactly, and for the love of Hemingway, don’t send fruit baskets or bother them with phone calls.
I hesitate to use the term “networking,” because it makes me think of handshakes and suits and a kind of fake personal connection. But. I’d highly suggest building a support system, extending your tendrils into the writerverse. Conferences, writers’ groups and associations, grad school, social media groups -- these can all be great sources of information and ways to connect with other people in the industry. I met my agent because a mutual friend, who is also a writer, thought we would be a good match and suggested I query her.
8. Do you have any suggestions or helps for new writers (please be specific and informational as possible)?
Make space in your life for your writing! Prioritize it. Always be working on something. Once you start building a portfolio of completed work, always have something on submission somewhere. Don’t get married to that first, wonderful thing you finish. It’s okay to work on a 500,000-word novel for fifteen years, but try to have other projects, too. You never know what will turn into something great.
9. What was one of the most surprising things you learned your creative process with your books, editing, publishing or illustrating?
I’ve learned I can’t outline to save my life. Sadly, I’ve got an outline due in two weeks! We’ll see how this goes!
10. Do you have any tricks or tips to help others become a better writer (please be as specific and information as you possibly can)?
As Stephen King said, read a lot and write a lot. And revise. If you’re in a critique group, make sure it’s one that inspires you to come home and write (neither blanket positivity nor purely disparaging comments are helpful when it comes to revising; questions and reactions tend to be much better).
11. Do you have any suggestions for providing twists in a good story?
I think the best twists are the ones you should have seen coming, but didn’t. The ones that you can find and follow upon second reading, like in Agatha Christie’s Crooked House. If you’ve never tried seeding a twist all the way through, there are some good pointers and places to start in Van Dine’s classic twenty rules for detective stories.
12. What makes your or any book stand out from the crowd?
That’s a great question, and I’m sure there are many different answers. For me, I think a lot of the time it’s voice that makes a book stand out, that makes me keep turning pages. (Or that makes me put the book down and walk away!) If I can easily imagine writing a short story or letter or anything else in the style of the book I’m reading, that’s a sign it’s got a good, strong voice.
13. What are some ways in which you promote your work?
Mostly I get my name out there by being involved in the writing world -- leading workshops, editing, doing panels, and supporting other writers.
14. What saying or mantra do you live by?
“There’s room for everyone at the top.” -- Carolyn Coman
15. Anything else you would like to say?
Thanks so much for having me! :)