Congratulations to Daisy, winner of Inkitt’s Science Fiction and Fantasy Writing Contest!
Welcome Daisy! We’re really excited to get to know you better and learn more about your work.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
My full name is Desiree van Krieken, but most people on Inkitt call me Daisy. I am a thirty-three year old mom of two beautiful children, happily married, have two cats and work part-time as a nurse in a home for elderly and physically disabled people.
About twice a year I switch from hobby to hobby, or have two hobbies at the same time, but right now I’m quite stuck on reading fantasy books and writing them myself as well! Because of my hyperactive character, I can manage to do multiple things at the same time, which can be quite annoying to either my family or my co-workers, but luckily they all accept me just the way I am. Not that I would change my way of thinking though, but don’t tell that to them!
Could you give us a quick sneak peek at your winning story, Lycanthropy?
Sure! Emerson is a strong-willed female werewolf who has come to terms about her experiences as she has dealt with plenty of horrors during her young life. She’s about to break through that way of life, only to face more problems.
Emerson doesn’t believe in love, she doesn’t believe in mates, and she doesn’t understand why the Goddess had the crazy idea to match two people up – for life. However, will her new experiences change the way she thinks and feels about love?
When did you first start writing?
Well, my answer could be a bit shocking for some people as I have three books online already, and they aren’t short for that matter either. But, I only started writing a year ago! As a chaotic hyperactive female with ADHD, I was trying to find a new hobby, which turned out to be reading. So, I found the Inkitt app, read like twenty books in one month and then figured, “Ah what the heck, I can do this myself as well!” Of course, at first I was just working out an idea, and never anticipated to create a complete book, but when I had put it online and got some sweet comments I just kept on going, and going… and going…
What is your writing routine like? Do you have a favorite place to work? Do you write every day?
It is fast! Let me tell you, if I get an idea to continue my story, I can easily write four chapters a day. But, because I have two little children, my own routine gets a bit interrupted every now and then. So, I have my computer on at almost all hours of the day, and when I don’t have to do my house chores, work, diaper changing, playing with the kids, or picking them up from school, I type as much as I can. Oh, and my husband needs his attention too, every now and then! When I am busy I always keep my phone with me, so that when an idea comes to mind, I put it in there as a note for later use.
Furthermore, when I have enough content, I update a chapter a day which my readers fully appreciate as they have mentioned that several times already. But, in order to be able to do that and keep a ‘normal’ personal life as well, I submit the first chapter of a new book when I have about thirty chapters written. That way I can change chapters when I’m continuing to write but also give my readers the pleasure of reading a new chapter each day.
Where did the idea for this particular story come from? Did you have the ending in mind when you began, or did it surprise you?
Lycanthropy is actually written because I wanted to follow the most hot topic of the moment. It sounds a bit egocentric, but I wanted to reach more readers for them to also be able to read my first two books. However, as I don’t want to write anything that I don’t like myself, I wanted it to be a little different than all the other werewolf books that are online now. So, I put a little sarcasm in the story and made the main character one bad ass woman! When I started to write it, I got myself enthused with so many ideas that I just couldn’t stop writing and came up with more cliffhangers and twists with each chapter. Thus, in the end, I was really happy that I had decided to write something with werewolves and vampires because I really enjoyed doing it!
As I am writing, while submitting the chapters online at the same time, I never have a clue as to how I will get to the end. Of course, I have a certain goal as to what I want to happen in the end, but the ‘how’ is still something unknown to me, even when I’m in the middle of a chapter. I just try to go with the flow and never force myself to create an ending only because I have to. If there are more ideas in my mind, then I’ll just work them out and get to the end eventually.
Have you ever experienced writer’s block? If so, how to you move past it?
Yes, of course I have! I mean, I might be one freakishly fast writer but that doesn’t mean I don’t stumble on a moment where I clearly don’t know how to proceed from one moment to the next. But, as I said before, I only submit the first chapter when I have written enough, as that will give me a margin of time to get me out of my writer’s block and come up with new ideas to work out.
One tip that I can give my readers is to just keep writing and the right ideas will come to mind because of it! One time, I even had written two whole pages of text but decided to throw it out of the window and start all over with that chapter. In the end, it was a good decision as I had gotten a better idea out of it and never used those two pages again later in my story.
Another tip is to ask your readers at the end of a chapter what they think about your story! It is just a simple question, but sometimes they come up with ideas for you. For example, there had been a reader of mine who wanted to ‘kill’ one of my characters, and even though I didn’t plan on doing that, I found a way to ‘hurt’ this specific character. As a ‘thank you’ I even gave a new character the same name as that reader because I loved her enthusiasm in her comments.
How did you feel when you learned you were one of the contest winners?
Confused! Totally baffled! Excited! I was feeling over the moon, because I never expected to receive an e-mail where it said that I had won. I had to read the first line over and over again until it dawned on me that what I was reading, was actually true! My cheeks turned red, my hands began to shake, and while totally mesmerized, I called my mother on the phone (who has been amazingly supportive during all my writing), to tell her I won. Well, she didn’t understand a word I said at first, but that came later.
Besides my excitement, it was really confusing as well as I ‘only’ had about hundred-fifty followers at that time, (not hundred-fifty-thousand, just hundred-fifty!) and my book had won a contest of which a lot of other authors had submitted their work too. Mind you, I love to have every single follower I have now, but there are plenty of authors on Inkitt that have thousands of followers, so how have I come to win this contest then? I guess that you just never should give up your project, just put all your ideas in a book and keep on going! Everyone can win a contest, as even a mom of two, while having a part-time job and ADHD can reach the top! Positive thinking can get you that far!
Interested in learning more?