Writing Process

Words from the author:

I think most kids discover what they want to be when they grow up nearly from childbirth. But it wasn't until third grade that I realized how much I loved to write stories. However, I wouldn't actually sit down to write a book until two years later.

In fifth grade, I began to realize that I couldn't just dawdle around, waiting for the day I became an adult to just suddenly become an author. One of the things that really pushed me to actually write something was Grace Lin's books about her childhood. I believe she mentioned herself writing stories as a young girl, and because I knew Grace Lin was successful as an author, I decided to go on the computer and begin writing about a little magical world.

It was funny that, as soon as I opened up a blank document, I realized I had absolutely no clue on how to start the story. So I just used a starter similar to the ones they taught to us in school. "To this day..." And I just worked from there.

I found that, unlike on paper, typing on the computer was a lot easier, and a lot faster to get my thoughts out.

It seems professional if I say that my writing was in a constant flow, right? Unfortunately, that was not the case. In fact, I just worked till the end of Chapter 3 for a few days before stopping for probably about a month.

My writing came in random bursts. When I was writing the first draft, I had a lot of free time, since I was in elementary school (isn't that something to miss). So after school, I'd go on the computer at random times, and write for a few hours. However, most of the story was created over winter break when my family and I and another family traveled to South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. I know I probably should've payed more attention to the exciting new sights outside. But all of a sudden, I was determined to write as much as I could. It was like I was living half of my life in the real world, and the other half in my story. My dad would widen his eyes as I used his iPad to furiously type chapter after chapter.

The plot always seemed to get something added to it, as me, being melodramatic, created new dramatic dialogue for my characters' to say, and I gave the story as many twists and turns as I could. It was just a little game.

Sometime in February of 2017, I finally finished the first draft. It was the night of the Super Bowl, if I remember correctly. I couldn't say a word. I had to check to make sure that I had actually brought the story to an end. I almost muted out the blaring noise of the TV downstairs, and my dad and his best friend cheering on the Patriots. One part of me actually wanted to march downstairs, shut off the TV, and yell at them, "I finished a book! I've done it! And it's a lot more important than this stupid game!"

It's definitely not easy to stick to a story and finish it. I still have lots of trouble doing that, really. But I'm glad I wrote A Butterfly Universe, my first ever book.