Last year, right before the release of The Assassin, I participated in a link-up of sorts, “Behind the Scenes.” Now that it’s been a year and 2016 is wrapping up, I thought it would be fun to revisit this and do it again.

Behind the Scenes in 2016

WHERE DO YOU WRITE?

I work at home, in my little office area. I spent a good part of this year writing in coffee shops in Austin. One of my favorite shops is right on the lake, which is a great back drop.

WHEN DO YOU NORMALLY WRITE? NIGHT, AFTERNOON, OR MORNING?

I spent most of the year writing at night. Lately, I’ve been writing in the mid-morning after going to the gym.

IS THERE A CERTAIN SNACK YOU LIKE TO EAT WHILE WRITING?

I try to drink water, but don’t be surprised to see me with Dr Pepper or a glass of wine in the evening.

HOW OFTEN DO YOU WRITE A NEW NOVEL?

It usually takes me a month and a half to three months to complete each draft. Still hard to tell how long it takes me to complete a whole novel.

DO YOU LISTEN TO MUSIC WHILE YOU WRITE?

Yes, or I listen to writing podcasts while writing. I typically stick with music because I don’t need to pay attention to the music. Podcasts are a little more info-based and require more attention.

WHAT DO YOU WRITE ON? LAPTOP OR PAPER?

Laptop. If I can’t do it on my laptop, I’ll take my iPad and work in Scrivener there.

IS THERE A SPECIAL RITUAL YOU HAVE BEFORE OR AFTER YOU WRITE?

No, but I need to start developing some for pre-writing.

WHAT DO YOU DO TO GET INTO THE MOOD TO WRITE?

I still don’t have an answer to this! I think being in the middle of a great plot is what makes me excited to keep writing. Sitting down to pick up and continue on a rollercoaster ride is always fun.

WHAT IS ALWAYS NEAR THE PLACE YOU WRITE?

A drink, probably my planner, and my phone.

DO YOU HAVE A REWARD SYSTEM FOR YOUR WORD COUNT?

Keep going for more words.

IS THERE ANYTHING ABOUT YOUR WRITING PROCESS THAT OTHERS MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT?

It’s amazing how one year changes everything. I’m currently planning the “ending” to the series (I’ll be taking a break to focus on some other things). What I have planned pre-break and post-break are very different tones of a similar story in the series. I’m excited for people to get their hands on these!

I can’t believe that 2016 is almost over. In two and a half weeks, a new year will be here, and I am so excited for what it has in store. 2016 has been an extreme year, so I’m ready for something new!