Here’s an interview assistant editor Kellea Morrison conducted with former contributor Liz Drayer.
KM: What inspired this piece in particular, if you don’t mind my asking?
LD: Connecting with high school friends on social media made me think of those years again from a different perspective. As teens, we experience success and failure with mega-intensity. Buffeted by life’s tides, we lurch towards adulthood. It’s a turbulent and momentous time, story-worthy for sure. Also, a boy in my class was a gifted caricaturist, and I always thought his talent was unique.
KM: How long did it take you to write this piece, specifically?
LD: Most of my stories take a few days to write. This one came out especially fast.
KM: How many different times did you revise this piece before you believed it to be complete?
LD: After several drafts, I put a story away for a few months before the final edit. This gives me a fresh perspective, and reveals issues I missed the first time around.
KM: I found this piece so interesting. I couldn’t stop reading it. With that being said, the male character’s role in this piece was written so well. How did you write the male character in such a believable fashion? What’s it like to write a character that is not only the opposite sex, but also younger than you are?5. What advice do you have concerning writing of the opposite sex/different age/time period? Is there anything specific that you focus on when writing characters that are so drastically different than yourself?
LD: To write as a character much different than yourself, it helps to know someone like your protagonist, and imagine how they’d react to situations and feel about them. A good ear for dialogue also helps, along with opportunities to eavesdrop.