WOULD YOU RATHER
Would you rather write an entire book with your feet or with your tongue?
Feet. The more I talk, the less I write.
Would you rather have one giant bestseller or a long string of moderate sellers?
Long stream. I hear success can be paralyzing.
Would you rather be a well known author now or be considered a literary genius after you’re dead?
Well-known now. Who will be reading in a hundred years?
Would you rather write a book without using conjunctions or have every sentence of your book begin with one?
But every sentence should begin with a conjunction! Because conjunctions connect ideas. And good writers have been starting sentences with them forever.
Would you rather have every word of your favorite novel tattooed on your skin or always playing as an audio in the background for the rest of your life?
Tattooed in microscopic letters on the back of my left knee. I can’t even listen to music when I write.
Would you rather write a book you truly believe in and have no one read it or write a crappy book that compromises everything you believe in and have it become an overnight success?
Write a book I truly believe in. Writing is hard enough; why go to the brain damage of writing a crappy one?
Would you rather write a plot twist you hated or write a character you hated?
Characters I hate. They’re less inhibiting to write and easier to kill off. A bad plot twist can send the story totally off course.
Would you rather use your skin as paper or your blood as ink?
Blood as ink—been there.
Would you rather become a character in your novel or have your characters escape the page and reenact the novel in real life?
Escape the page, because they could take the story anywhere they wanted. Writing is my escape, so being trapped in one of my novels would be hell.
Would you rather write without using punctuation and capitalization or without using words that contained the letter E?
without punctuation and capitalization I need all the e words I can get
Would you rather have schools teach your book or ban your book?
Depends on the school!
Would you rather be forced to listen to Ayn Rand bloviate for an hour or be hit on by an angry Dylan Thomas?
Hit on by an angry Dylan Thomas, especially if he’s buying.
Would you rather be reduced to speaking only in haiku or be capable of only writing in haiku?
Writing in haiku.
I am tongue-tied enough now.
Who knows what I’d say?
Would you rather be stuck on an island with only the 50 Shades Series or a series in a language you couldn’t read?
50 Shades is entertaining and instructive.
Would you rather critics rip your book apart publicly or never talk about it at all?
A book that evokes no response is one hand clapping.
Would you rather have everything you think automatically appear on your Twitter feed or have a voice in your head narrate your every move?
Voice in my head—at least it’s private.
Would you rather give up your computer or pens and paper?
Would you rather write an entire novel standing on your tippy-toes or laying down flat on your back?
I tank up with caffeine, so flat on my back would be a waste of good coffee.
Would you rather read naked in front of a packed room or have no one show up to your reading?
There are worse things than having nobody show up!
Would you rather read a book that is written poorly but has an excellent story, or read one with weak content but is written well?
Weak content but written well. If a book is poorly written, it’s tough to stick with it to see if the story pans out. Writing and thinking are two steps in the same process. How good a story can a poorly written book really tell?
Stephanie Kane is a lawyer and award-winning author of four crime novels. Born in Brooklyn, she came to Colorado as a freshman at CU. She owned and ran a karate studio in Boulder and is a second-degree black belt. After graduating from law school, she was a corporate partner at a top Denver law firm before becoming a criminal defense attorney. She has lectured on money laundering and white collar crime in Eastern Europe, and given workshops throughout the country on writing technique. She lives in Denver with her husband and two black cats.
Extreme Indifference and Seeds of Doubt won a Colorado Book Award for Mystery and two Colorado Authors League Awards for Genre Fiction. She belongs to Mystery Writers of America, Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and the Colorado Authors League.