True Love Way. She is a freelance writer, and she is the founder and managing editor of The Chick Lit Bee, a book blog that promotes and celebrates women’s fiction. Nancy is at work on her next novel. For more information, please visit http://www.nancyscrofano.com.
Q. What inspired the plot for your novel, True Love Way?
My friendships that originated in elementary school and lasted through college were the initial inspiration for True Love Way. After college, we grew apart. I wanted to write about childhood friendships that turned into adult friendships so I could delve into how they transition and change throughout the years. I wanted to see what would happen if something forced two childhood friends to work out whatever problems they had. I knew the main character would be stuck in the past because the story would essentially be about how she finally moves forward with her life. I wanted to give her a huge obstacle that would be the ultimate test of friendship and forgiveness.
Q. For this novel, did the plot, characters, or the title come first?
The plot came first, and then the characters. The title was last.
Q. Would you prefer reading stand-alone novels or a series? Would you prefer writing stand-alones or a series?
I don’t really have a preference regarding what I read. If I love a book and want to see what the characters will do next, then I definitely want a sequel, and possibly a series. However, sometimes a story is better when it’s left as one book, not because it isn’t good, but just because the journey of those characters reached its conclusion. It’s up to the author whether or not a series is appropriate. I would prefer to write series because I think it’s fun to see what characters are up to, but it also depends on the readers’ interest, if enough of them want the story to continue past one book.
Q. At what age did you know that writing was something you wanted to pursue?
I started writing screenplays in college and absolutely loved it. I took several screenwriting classes as part of my major, and they were always my favorite classes. My professors encouraged me to write romantic comedies because I love them so much. After reading The Little Lady Agency by Hester Browne, I knew I wanted to write chick lit.
Q. What is your process for creating a character for your novel?
The characters’ names come first. In order to develop their personalities, their backgrounds, and their individual stories, I need to know their names. Once I decide on names, I’m able to continue on and figure out who each character is and what each of their roles are in the novel.
Q. Describe your writing ritual.
I don’t really have a writing ritual. I write when I’m inspired, but I do try to force myself to write every day, even when I feel like I have nothing to say. I give myself deadlines, so if I’m trying to meet a deadline, then I have to write, even if I end up deleting/rewriting most of it. I usually listen to music on iTunes while I write. Upbeat songs for the humorous scenes and love songs for the romantic scenes. But if I’m writing a pivotal scene that takes intense concentration or if I’ve been working on a scene for a long time and I’m trying to get it the way I want it, then I need total silence. I write a lot more at night than I do during the day. I’m a night owl.
Q. What are you currently reading?
I usually read several books at a time, switching back and forth. Right now, I’m reading Last-Minute Love by Romi Moondi, In Need of Therapy by Tracie Banister, and Picture Perfect by Lucie Simone.
Q. Do you prefer to write your story ideas down or save them to your computer?
I take notes all the time, and if I’m not near my computer, I’ll save my notes and type them up later. I do have a laptop, but sometimes I like to use a pen and paper. I guess I’m old fashioned.
Q. What are you currently working on?
I’m working on a young adult novel. It’s chick lit for teenagers. The manuscript is complete, so I’m revising it and editing it now.
Q. What is your advice to aspiring authors?
Keep writing, keep reading, and never give up!