Rebecca Gray, Runner Up

Tuesday, May 08, 2007
WOW! talked to another of our Winter Flash Fiction Contest winners. Gather round and be inspired.

WOW: Rebecca, kudos to you for placing in the top ten! What encouraged you to write Nor Iron Bars a Cage?

Rebecca: When I read the prompt for this contest, I didn't think about where I would go, but instead, wished I had the freedom just to go. Like the main character, I have epilepsy and, after two years of driving, am no longer allowed to drive. I live in a small village and am reliant on friends and family to take me to nearby cities. I will always wish to drive, but writing Nor Iron Bars a Cage helped remind me that there are so many more important things in life.

WOW: I’d say you have a beautiful attitude! It’s so wonderful when our writing helps us gain wisdom in areas we might not expect it. I’d say that’s a major benefit from writing. Since the character shares a part of you, did you have to do a lot of editing to meet the word count limit?

Rebecca: Oh, yeah! I tend to think every little thing is important and find it hard to cut my work up.

WOW: You did a fine job, as we can tell from the final result. Did your friends or other writers provide feedback here? In your bio you mention spending time with friends and Inspirational Romance novels. Could you tell us a little about these get-togethers and how they influence your own writing?

Rebecca: Sorry to disappoint you, but my get-togethers with friends are simply that. While my friends are wonderfully honest and I can trust them to speak the truth when I bounce ideas off them, for the most part, our get-togethers are for ourselves as humans not myself as a writer.

WOW: You’re definitely not disappointing! Friends are crucial for that “human touch.” Many times I think our friends help us forget about our writing for a while, giving us that much needed mental break. Could you instead recommend any books for aspiring writers? Readers?

Rebecca: Not a book so much as an author: Dave Barry. As a reader, I find him refreshingly entertaining. As a writer, I desperately want to learn how throughout an article - or even one of his novels - he repeatedly leads the reader down one path until, with just a few carefully placed words, he spins the scenario backwards and upside down, catching the reader off guard with zany humour. (I'm sorry, that's the best description I could give. You'll have to read his work to really understand).

WOW: I’d say that’s a fine description. Humor is helpful in many ways as well as refreshing, and I believe we could all us more of it in our day to day dealings. What would you say is the most helpful part about writing for contests?

Rebecca: I love the challenge of word count limits. It helps me determine what's really important to the story. My first novel rambled on, but after several short fiction contests, I can already see a positive difference in my second novel.

WOW: You certainly have a great attitude! Speaking of novels, you also mention in your bio that you’re working on Romance novels. Could you tell us a little about your experience in this arena?

Rebecca: My parents own a Christian bookstore and, as a teen, I think I read every book on their romance shelves at least once. A couple years ago, I found myself wanting to read, but without a book. I began to write a story that I would want to read. Wisdom's Cry was finished last year. It now sits on the backburner as I hone my skills with various contests, challenges, and a second romance novel. I will be attending two writer's conferences this fall. I look forward to finding answers to questions I don't even know I'm supposed to ask.

WOW: That’s a huge accomplishment! I hope you find many answers at the conferences. On a totally different subject, here’s a purely fun question about your cat, Goose. Many writers have pets that inspire or play the part of companion. Does Goose keep you company or inspire you when you write?

Rebecca: Sometimes I talk to her when I'm stuck. She's an ok listener, but not so great at feedback. Although, sometimes that's a good thing.

WOW: A silent listener sometimes exceeds another person’s wisdom when a writer’s ideas are forming! Do you have any wise words for our readers?

Rebecca: Um, wise words usually come from wise people so, uh, nope. No wisdom here.

WOW: Well, I’ll have to disagree with you there. You definitely display wisdom through your writing, answers, and your positive attitude, to say the least. Keep on writing, and good luck in all your endeavors!


WOW! said...

What a great interview Rebecca :-) Thank you for sharing your heart with us, and your wonderful story. Keep up the super outlook! We know you'll go far!

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