Andrea Jacobsen [galinda91]
What did you first read? How did you begin to write? Who were the first to read what you wrote?
My father read to me from a very young age, and it wasn't simply "Run, Spot, Run". My earliest literary memory is my dad reading "The Hobbit" to me and seeing if I could figure out any of Golem's or Bilbo's riddles. It was when he was reading "The Lord of the Rings" and we got to the scene where you believe Gandolf has been killed that I realized how powerful and moving a book can be. I went into mourning for weeks, but came out of it with an understanding of death that aided me in real life situations. Books and stories are incredible ways to experience worlds you can never physically visit but are still connected to the one you live in
I began to write short stories by the age of 8, some for school, but mostly for myself and my friends. I'd put my friends into known worlds, like Star Trek or Care Bears, and then write about their adventures. We'd sit on the playground and I'd read my works out to them. They were a highly receptive audience, though very capable of constructive criticism if they felt their character wasn't being given their due!
What is your favorite genre? Can you provide a link to a site where we can read some of your work or learn something about it?
I have my Femslash writing on my livejournal page at http://galinda91.livejournal.com/ . And my advice column on "How to Apply for a Job" can be found at hubpages.com.
What is your creative process like? What happens before sitting down to write?
I'd have to say my process is spastic. I can go for a long time without hearing the muses calling my name then I'll get inspiration out of the blue and I'm manic about getting the idea down on paper. I enjoy writing to music, specifically celtic rock and Irish dance, it gets my blood pumping and my fingers flying on the keyboard.
I spoke of the muses, which I know are an oft used cliche for writers. But I am a Druidic Pagan and believe very strongly in the unseen world. I'm not saying I've got sprites sitting on my shoulder telling me what to write, but the way in which I become inspired feels like an outside power is willing me to put voice to its tale. I'll often have a phrase or bit of dialogue banging back and forth in my skull which will then turn into an entire scene or paragraph and then it's off to the races.
What type of reading inspires you to write?
I wouldn't say I'm often inspired to write by reading other's works, though every once in awhile it does happen. Usually it's if I feel a story wasn't finished in a satisfactory way or that an idea wasn't fully explored. I find what happens around me on a daily basis and what I see happen in the performing arts to be more fertile idea areas.
What well known writers do you admire most?
This is an easy one... Dean Koontz, Elizabeth Bear, Kathy Reichs and Ray Bradbury. All three are unbelievable world builders who are able to take the reader on a journey outside the mundane. Their characters are always clearly defined and believable. I get a high after reading their works and will often have to ration myself so that I don't rush through any new books, leaving myself with nothing to look forward to. All speak with a very human voice and deal with issues that are relevant to today's world, even if, like Bradbury, the stories were written decades ago.
Are you equally good at telling stories orally?
Yes, I am. If anything I am stronger orally as my grandmother taught how to hold and entertain an audience with her superb storytelling ability. Many of my written and verbal skills were learned from her, especially how to tell a joke and never to fudge a punchline.
Deep down inside, who do you write for?
Me. Plain and simple. And the muses.
Is writing a form of personal therapy? Are internal conflicts a creative force?
I can honestly say writing saved my life. I had a difficult time when I was coming out as a lesbian and faced serious depression. I stepped to a dark edge and looked over, seeing a world against me. Instead of taking my own life, I took that of a character in a similar situation to mine. It was cathartic and gave me the chance to reassess my own choices and options
Do you participate in competitions? Have you received any awards?
Yes, I enjoy writing in competitions and have earned a few awards over the years. The lastest, and of ones of which I am most proud are "The SG1 Bluemoon" and "The Moonie Award" for my story "An Interlude". It, and the sequel can be found at my livejournal.
Do you share rough drafts of your writings with someone whose opinion you trust?
Yes, I share most of my writing with my wife, who is both supportive and critical, a combination that is hard to find in the correct proportions. She also is fantastic for getting me to sit down and work through any mental walls I encounter.
Thunder Bay, Canada