Maddie M. White is author of short fiction collection Quick Reads: Volume 1 and novel :08 Seconds. Huge thanks to Maddie for interviewing with us!
What are you working on right now?
So many things! I think I probably have four or five WIPs going right now that I switch back and forth between. I'm working on one that is going to be a superhero book with romance, a middle-grade fiction based on my awkward years in middle school, a memoir about my struggle with anxiety and depression, and a couple of other romances. I've got an idea for a horror type book that I'm really excited about.
As a fiction writer, do you have a favorite character you've written? Is there anything about that character you'd want readers to know?
That's like asking a mom who her favorite child is! I put a little bit of myself in all of my main characters, so it's really hard to pick one. One of my least favorite characters to write was Drake Lewis, Sophie's abusive ex-boyfriend. He was a total jerk, and I felt bad putting Sophie through that.
Quick Reads: Volume 1 is a collection of short fiction while :08 Seconds is novel length. What has your experience been like with writing shorter pieces with longer works? Do you usually have an idea on how long a piece will be when you begin, or does it emerge as you go?
I actually started out writing shorter pieces and submitting them. I can normally work on a few of them while doing a novel as well. I can pretty much tell when I get an idea how much I'll be able to tell the story and how long it will be. Sometimes the less you say, the better.
What was your process in arranging the stories in Quick Reads: Volume 1? How did you want to lead readers through?
I put them in order from my first one to the most recent one. I wanted to show how my writing and story-telling has progressed in just a year. (Or at least, I hope it has).
Readers have said :08 Seconds will “grab you from the first page and not let go.” What works for you when creating tension?
I really try to put myself in the situation and imagine how the conversation or action would make me feel and how I would react. When you make it real, it helps readers to connect better.
Readers have also praised your work for its skill in giving us a wide range of emotion. Do you have any advice for fellow authors about capturing emotion on the page?
I think the same thing as I said in the previous answer. Really put yourself in that moment either as the character or a bystander. How would you see that scene play out in real life? How would you respond to it?
What's the story behind choosing the :08 Seconds title? Did you have any alternate titles you were considering?
I chose that title for the simple fact that one of my main characters, Trey, is a bull rider and that is an integral part of the story. I didn't realize at the time that another book with almost the same title had been popular in the 90s. I was dead set on the title from the moment I thought of the story, so I kept it.
Is there anything else you'd like readers to know?
Before I was a writer, I was book obsessed. I loved connecting with characters and feeling inspired by them. Nothing was better to me than the feeling of heartbreak when you reach the last page of a book, but you're not ready to say goodbye to this universe you were in. That's the make of a good book and good writing. I hope to continue to write things that will inspire my readers and give them their own worlds to escape to. I'm just grateful for the opportunity to do so among so many great writers.
Buy her books here.
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