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Monday, March 8, 2010

Monday Spotlight: Susan Palmquist

Let Me Entertain You

It’s my week to be in the spotlight.

To be honest, I thought I’d just have one day to spend with you. When I found out it was five, panic set in. I sat down wondering how I could keep you entertained all week. Then I realized it’s a bit like the process I go through each day when I turn on my computer.

Each time writers sit down to write, be it an op-ed piece or novel, their main goal is to grab your attention, hold on it and keep it until they’ve typed the last word. Not always an easy task but it’s one of the challenges of being a writer. It’s also one of the great things about being a reader. And I think it’s why so many, if not all, writers are also avid readers. As LASR is for both readers and writers, I hope my week’s blogs will be entertaining to all who visit.

So why do I love reading and writing so much?

When you pick up a book you wonder about the characters you’ll meet within the pages, the adventure you’ll be taken on, the places you’ll visit. Will the writer make you cry, make you laugh, leave you wanting more?

When you sit down to write you ask yourself what type of characters can I create that readers will love, cheer for, want to read more about. What plotline will keep them turning the pages? How can I describe where the story is set so they see, hear and smell what it’s like to be really there?

For me, there’s nothing more exciting than switching on my laptop, looking at the blank screen and typing the first word of a new manuscript. Most of the time there’s a story that’s been in my head for months and it’s just waiting to get out as fast as my fingers can type. Each story is different, each one comes about in its own unique way, and in my opinion, that’s the best part of the job. You call the shots, you’re the director and you decide what ends up on the cutting room floor.

Of course, there are the days when the fingers slow down, the characters aren’t in a hurry to move the story forward and the plot doesn’t seem to be coming together. However, the great thing is you can sleep on it and the next day your fingers are flying across the keys again.

Yes, some days are good, some days are bad, but all in all I wouldn’t swap this job for anything. And like I always tell everyone, even if I win the lottery tomorrow, I’ll still be back at my keyboards the next day.

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