Today, I’m delighted to have Elizabeth Inglee-Richards (aka bodgei) step into the Meager Puddle of Limelight which this blog can provide.
I haven’t known her long, but if there’s one thing guaranteed to get someone added to my ‘People I’m proud to know’ list, it’s having the guts to chase a dream, despite a built-in excuse which most other folks would use to justify not even trying.
I caught up with Elizabeth after her recent victory in this year’s Puddle for Best Short Story Title award for her entry, A BOX OF COWS. She was kind enough to answer my questions:
Congratulations on your Puddle win. Which came first, the title or the story?
The story. I’m a huge believer in working titles. If I was inspired by a piece of music I’ll use a line from the song, I just wrote a piece for a fiction exchange that is titled ‘A FOOL IN THE RAIN’ because I was listening to Led Zeppelin when I wrote it.
What’s your method for deciding titles?
In some cases the title just presents as I am writing and I just know that it’s the right one. Sometimes I send them out to my readers with just the working titles. In those cases I’ll ask for suggestions. Some of those ideas will spark an idea for a different story. I guess that’s a long way of saying I don’t really have a process I just go with what feels right.
Tell us a little about A BOX OF COWS. Is it finished/published?
A BOX OF COWS is a finished short story; it’s a Suburban Fantasy set on I-95. It isn’t sold but I have sent it out to two publishers. I don’t know if I will be able to sell it, the story is pretty soft. It doesn’t have the hard edge that people are looking for these days, and it’s not romantic enough to be ‘paranormal romance’ I am sure it will find a home at some point.
As a reader, does a good title make a difference to you?
Oh yes. As a reader both the title and the cover make a difference to me. That’s probably why I’ve had a hard time going to e-books. I love that whole cover/spine thing. I’m a fan of longer titles – one word titles don’t do much for me. I think my favorite title right now is Demons Five, Exorcists Nothing by William Peter Blatty, in fact I bought that book on the title alone.
What are your long term goals as a writer?
I hope that someday writing will be a paying hobby for me. I mostly write for my friends and myself, I feel like I’m just getting to a point now where I can submit things. I’m new to all of this writing stuff, or at least to putting it down on paper. I’m not new to telling stories, just to the writing part.
I have a learning disability that would, I think, make writing full time a very stressful job. I type very slowly and spell very badly. I need a whole heap of editing.
Tell us about your very first sale.
My first sale was last year, it was a story called TOBIN BRIDGE, it’s about three shape-shifters on a Bridge. There really isn’t a way to make that line not sound like the start of a joke. It was published in issue 3 of Ethereal Tales last April. I wrote it for Ani Bester (ani_bester) here at Live Journal.
What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever had?
“Write what keeps you up at night.” I don’t know who said it.
Do you belong to a writing/critique group?
I belong to a writing group. We used to critique but now we are down to two people. My Mom and I have been talking about starting a new critique group, but she is leery of mixed genre groups.
Where can readers find your work?
I have a few older, un-edited, pieces in my Live Journal, two pieces up at fictionpress and the one piece in Ethereal Tales. I am also a member of the Live Journal community storytellersong, where writers submit pieces inspired by a musical prompt.
Aside from Live Journal, where else on the web can you be found?
I have two Live Journal accounts, bodgei and bodgewrite. I also have a Facebook account, Bodge Inglee.