Thursday, October 21, 2010

Lorna Suzuki Talks about Writing Outside the Box

Blog Tours are a fantastic way for writers to build an audience and promote their books. So I'm thrilled to be hosting a day for the wonderful Lorna Suzuki!

Writing Outside the Box

Thank you, Caroline, for hosting Day 6 of this blog tour to celebrate the release of The Broken Covenant, the final novel to complete the Imago Chronicles fantasy series as well as the launch of my first YA fantasy novel, The Magic Crystal (Book One of the Dream Merchant Saga).

As the author of nine adult epic fantasies, I often get a

surprised response from those who find out I write more than this particular genre. Some are quite stunned when they discover I also write biographies (my last one was aired on the Biography Channel) and I also write voice over scripts for a TV travel adventure series.

Many regard fiction and non-fiction as being on the opposite ends of the writing spectrum, and there have been times when I’ve been asked why not stick to one or the other. What has been my response? Writing non-fiction helps to pay the bills, but from a creative perspective, I believe it’s a good thing to branch out and diversify one’s writing. For me, from a creative point of view, it is the challenge of seeing if I’m able to make non-fiction as fascinating or engaging as my fantasy stories while writing fantasies that seem almost grounded in reality.

I believe whether you are writing fiction or non-fiction, the author’s goal is to create a literary piece that will engage the readers, yes, even if it is an educational instruction guide. (I’ve written those, too!) To amaze, entertain and to allow the readers to step outside of their daily existence to escape into another world is a wonderful thing that we, as writers, are able to do.

With one of my latest novels scheduled for release on Oct. 23, I’ve expanded my writing wings again by creating a YA fantasy trilogy called The Dream Merchant Saga. The fantasy was not so much of a stretch for me; the true challenge was in creating a novel that was intended for a young adult audience, not to mention adopting a different writing style as this novel was written with a humorous slant.

It was satisfying to hear from the beta readers of The Magic Crystal that some of them were laughing so hard, I had them in tears. Now, this is truly a challenging thing: writing humor when one is not a particularly funny person! It was an exercise in writing that was probably more difficult than creating the battle/fight scenes that are so prevalent in the Imago series. As a martial arts practitioner/instructor, it was easy enough to write convincing fight scenes. However, it was a real battle to make my mind find humor in some of the hairy predicaments I placed my characters in. Of course, it becomes even more of a challenge to find humorous things to write about when I’m evolving into one of those finger-wagging, hermit-like grumpy, old coots who is constantly being put off by stupid people doing stupid things for stupid reasons (see… funny things do happen to me, but I’m not a funny person).

This is the beauty of what we do as writers. When we step outside of the genre we are so used to or write beyond our comfort zone, we are expanding our writing horizons. Not only does this challenge us from an artistic, creative perspective, it allows us to hone our writing skills on many levels, as well as immerse ourselves in these other brave, new worlds we would not venture into otherwise. And this can be a very good thing!

This blog tour concludes tomorrow with host Therese Walsh, author and co-founder of the Writer Unboxed website at Therese will be discussing the challenges of going indie and helping Lorna introduce her new YA fantasy, The Magic Crystal.

For more information about my book or to read excerpt, book reviews and more, please visit my website at

1 comment:

Susanne said...

Great post, Lorna! I made the switch to YA, and am now also working on an adult thriller, in two time periods. That's WAY out of my comfort zone! And I'm learning a lot.