Aaaaaaaaand it’s time for another spotlight! Who’s excited??
Anyhoo-this gal is so frickin awesome it’s like…not even funny. (My inner Valley girl is coming out, can you tell?) Her story Day WO/man is pure genius. Every single time I got an alert for an update, I’d be all over that shit like ants on a picnic cake. Seriously…chuck the boys in their room to play, plop the girl in a bouncer or stick a boob in her mouth and devour the newest chapter. That’s how great it is…no lie.
So, now that I’ve completed freaked y’all out with my incessant rambling, I’ll get right to it then.
Let’s start with an introduction. I’m Kelly, or as more people know me, Kelpie.
And you are?
Aloha Kelly! I’m Vanessa. Penname Alskl1ng on ff.net
So, tell me a little about yourself.
I’m a SoCal native that now lives on a volcanic rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, otherwise known as Hawaii. I surf and swim, but most of the time I’m in an air-conditioned office building reviewing resumes, sorting out employee relations issues and interviewing. Oh the joys of HR.
What do you do with yourself when you’re not writing?
Working, watching TV, reading, running, swimming and playing in the ocean with my Swedish husband. (If only those things were in the opposite order.)
What are some things you never leave home without?
My Oakley sunglasses and Hawaiian Tropic tropical lip balm. Work or play, both protect me from the sun.
What are some of your favorite (non-SVM) books?
Laurie R. King’s, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes mysteries. I love a good mystery and a strong female lead.
Favorite (non-True Blood) TV shows and movies?
Modern Family and Top Gear UK (not US). Forrest Gump, Some Like it Hot.
If you were stranded on a deserted island and had 3 famous people with you, who would you choose and why?
This is a funny question, considering I live on an island.
If I wanted to get off the island, I would want to be stranded with Russell Coutts (world champion sailor), Craig Hummer (national champion lifeguard – awesome guy) and Bear Grylls. All three would help me survive long enough to eventually navigate off of the deserted rock.
BUT – if I had to be stuck on the island and wanted some company to share coconuts with and play in the surf. My choices would be Alexander Skarsgård, Tom Brady and Kelly Slater.
What is 1 place you’d love to visit?
Rome. Three reasons – the history, the art, the food.
Do you have any pet peeves?
Excessive perfume. (I might be okay with excessive amounts of Encounter, if it’s on a certain Skarsgård)
Tell me one random thing about yourself.
I bought my husband at a date auction for $50 – and I set-up the whole thing. As the philanthropy chair for my sorority, I was in charge of putting on events to support our foundation that supported women’s cardiac care. The kick-off event was a date auction. Since I was a senior at the time, I decided against undergrads and sent my sisters to recruit grad students. One of them ended up being an engineering exchange student from Sweden. Six years and many immigration documents later, we’re still together. Best $50 I ever spent.
Just for some insight into you pick one. Feel free to tell why or not.
Chocolate or vanilla? Vanilla
Silver or gold? Silver.
Apple or PC? PC
White wine or red wine? White wine.
Liquor or beer? Beer. It is my best drink option when I’m with Swedes, because they like to drink, a lot. And I can’t keep up when they start with the liquor. It leads to me having random things on my head (see picture) or losing it on the Stockholm subway.
Coffee or tea? Coffee. My Starbucks concoction of choice is a tall latte with coconut syrup.
Sleep in or get up early? Get up early. The early bird catches the wave.
Okay, now for the good stuff.
Why and when did you start writing fanfics?
Football. I know, right? Kind of crazy reason to start writing, but I really used this story as an outlet to avoid hearing or reading about the aftermath of the Patriots Super Bowl loss in 2012. I’m a Patriots fanatic.
Besides SVM/True Blood, is there another book, TV show or movie that you would write for?
Never say never (did I just quote a Justin Bieber song. Shakes head), but right now I’m sticking with SVM/TB. I love the world Charlaine Harris has created; it’s so rich and full of Viking.
What kind of environment do you write in? Do you prefer using a pen and paper, a computer or some sort of mobile device to write?
The majority of the time I write in my bedroom. I shut the door and just cocoon myself in my fluffy bed and shut the curtains.
Ever write in your PJs?
Yes. All the time.
How bout naked? :o)
Not that I can recall. I sometimes went onto my roof and tried to write and get a tan at the same time. I like to multitask.
Where do you find inspiration for your stories? Do you pull your real life experiences into your writing?
I find inspiration in a lot of things. Sports, history, real life and fashion. The whole beginning of the story is taken from my job. (Don’t tell my boss, I interview people like Eric.)
Do you write on a schedule? If you do, how do you keep to that schedule?
I tried to post at least once a week. Keeping that schedule was easy when I locked myself in my room, turned on the A/C and pretended I lived in a cold place.
Do you plan out your stories or just write whatever comes to you?
A little bit of both. I started out with the main framework of DayWOman and then started filling in the pieces as I went. The timeline was important to me and a lot of the things that happened had to fit within that structure.
How do you deal with potential writers block?
I take a break and step away. Looking at Skarsporn always helps. He’s an excellent muse.
Do you have any writing rituals or superstitions?
No. I wish I did. That would be fun.
Is one genre easier for you to write than another? Is there anything that you just aren’t that great at writing?
Hard to say since I’ve only written one story, but I think writing angst would be hard for me.
What is the hardest part for you about writing fanfics?
The instant gratification of posting. There were times I really shouldn’t have posted, but I did it anyway to get it out. Mistakes and all. But at the same time I loved having that immediate feedback. I never banked chapters, so I would post and then start writing the next chapter sometimes at the direction of the reviews. It made the process of writing very organic.
Is there a method for coming up with titles for your stories and/or chapters?
I didn’t title my chapters on FF, but I did in LiveJournal. I started out keeping them short and sweet. Making each simply a verb that best described the chapter or alluded to a main point of it.
The title for my story was pretty straightforward and clear – daywoman. I capitalized the letter WO, because I wanted to emphasize her lack of having Eric, her vampire, during the day. It had a certain symmetry to it and it worked well for my story image. Sookie’s days were literally without Eric.
Which character do you identify with the most?
Sookie. Her whole experience of leaving her family to go to school and eventually try to get a job to apply what she learned in a meaningful way was something I went through. I went from southern California to Hanover, New Hampshire for college. Very, very different places, but that change in scenery helped me grow and develop as a person. I know I’m not going to save the world like Sookie, but in my own little pond I hope I can add balance in whatever way I can.
Which of your stories is your favorite to write and why? Which of your stories is your favorite concept wise?
DayWOman, as it’s the only one I’ve written. I loved writing a mix of humor and romance. DayWOman, because Sookie is more than a waitress, she’s a daywoman.
Do you talk to your family about your writing? How do they feel about it?
I’ve mentioned it to my family, but no one has ever read it. My husband gives me curious looks when I ask him to translate ridiculous things in Swedish. I don’t think he likes that I stay indoors all weekend to write, but he supports me by leaving me alone to do it.
Which is your favorite SVM book? Favorite True Blood episode?
All Together Dead. I Wish I Was the Moon.
What is the best compliment you’ve ever received on your stories?
A reader sent me a PM to let me know that they wanted to get a line from my story tattooed on them. That was pretty awesome. Aside from that, I enjoy hearing when a reader tells me that my story made them feel better or got them through a tough time.
How do you deal with the inevitable criticism?
I try to reach out to that reader (if I can) to try to understand or maybe see if I can fix whatever it is that is concerning to them. If it’s something minor like a grammar mistake or what not, I’ll change it. If not, it is what it is and move on.
Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
Just write and then get a beta. Sometimes you need to just jump in the water and get wet. You might sink or you might swim, but you’ll never know unless you do. And having a beta is like having a life raft – guiding you and keeping you afloat.
Have any recommendations? What are you reading at the moment?
I recommend anything from California Kat or Wylis. They both have a way of writing with so much depth that you get sucked into the worlds they create. They surely bring the angst, but the payoff is always worth it.
At the moment, I’m reading Dead Man’s Hand by eys1214, Come Back to Me by California Kat and Queen Sookie by my awesome beta GaijinVamp. I have a lot of catching up to do.
Outside of fanfic, I’m reading “When Pride Still Mattered: Lombardi” by David Maraniss. There is no offseason in football. ;)
And lastly, where can all your rabid readers stalk you?
All the usual places; fanfiction, A03, and livejournal. The links are posted on my profile. http://www.fanfiction.net/u/3325414/Alskl1ng . Feel free to stalk at will.
Thanks so much for taking the time to answer some questions!
And there it is. Seriously, go check her out! I can’t wait to see what else she come out with cause it’s sure to be another brilliant piece of work! Later!