The Writer Tag: Survey for Writers

April 15, 2014 - - 2 Comments


Answering Bea’s The Writer Tag survey! Check out her answers on The Dalaga Project.

1. What type of writing do you do?

Fiction. Novellas mostly. Short stories sometimes.

2. What genres and/or topics do you write about?

Romance for YA, NA, and adults. The comfort zone is New Adult and Contemporary, although I did try my hand at fantasy for a two-year period.

3. How long have you been writing?

Since I was eleven, when I started attempting to write stories featuring teens. I don’t really remember being interested in it before that time.

4. Are you published?

Yes, my romance/chick lit novellas are published/distributed in the Philippines by Summit Media. I also publish them myself.

5. What was the first story you ever wrote?

It’s a lot like Sweet Valley Twins. Later I learned that what I was doing was actually “fanfic.”

6. Why do you write?

I like doing it, and various elements are coming together so that it can keep happening.

7. How do you find time to write?

I have a daughter (and no yaya) so I have to BOOK the time to write. Daughter’s naptimes have become a solid 2-hour window to do it. I also ask relatives and the husband to babysit.

8. When and where are the best times to write?

It might not be the best time, but it’s my only time – 4 PM to 7 PM. Coincides with daughter’s nap, any other work is often done, and I can usually get someone to watch her. Over time I’ve trained myself to be ready to write during this period.

9. Favorite food/drinks while writing?

Tea, coffee, and recently tried a margarita (while writing a steamy scene) and THAT was effective.

10. Your writing playlist?

I have some go-to writing music, but I also try to keep a project-specific playlist. Here’s one for my latest, Georgia Lost and Found on Spotify.

11. What do family/friends/loved ones think of you writing?

My husband is my biggest fan. He will shamelessly brag about stuff I do to anyone. Family and friends are supportive, but not all of them are really into this. They’re glad they know someone who is though.

12. Parts of writing you enjoy the most?

Knowing that I’m writing the last scene. Also, writing the scene that inspired the story in the first place.

13. Parts of writing you find challenging?

There’s a stretch somewhere in the middle when I inevitably HATE everything, HATE every decision I’ve made, and wish I could start over. Getting past that is the most difficult.

14. What do you use to write with and on?

What I use evolves depending on where I write and how much time I have. There are books (Queen of the Clueless and Icon of the Indecisive, for example) that I wrote on an iPad. The earlier ones were on a desktop. Now I have notebooks and start everything longhand, old school, and then I straighten it out on a Google Doc on my next writing session.

15. How do you overcome writers block?

If it’s a block in the middle of a story, I just write a crap scene to go through the motions. Usually just the exercise of it unlocks something awesome.

16. How do you motivate yourself to write?

You know what? I actually don’t have to anymore. It would be different maybe if it wasn’t such a big part of my days and weeks.

17. Authors who inspire you as a writer?

Sheri Cobb South, who wrote the best Sweet Dreams novels, in my opinion. (No, it’s FACT.) Neil Gaiman. I’ve added Rainbow Rowell to that list now.

18. Books that inspire you as a writer?

There are a few, but the one that personally lit up my imagination again: SMOKE AND MIRRORS, the short story collection by Neil Gaiman. There’s a story there called “Snow, Glass, Apples” which is a retelling of Snow White and after it I was just YES, LET’S DO THIS WRITING THING AGAIN AND TRY TO DO IT RIGHT, BITCHES.

19. Best advice you’ve gotten as a writer?

No one actually said this, but comments over time have led me to learn: IT’S OKAY TO LINGER. It’s not a race (even if you have a deadline). Take a deep breath, enjoy it, and let the characters enjoy it too.

20. Writing goals this year?


Finish a music-themed chick lit short that’ll be part of an awesome collection. Write a novel mostly set in New Orleans and Texas. Finish and release Scambitious 2, because I put that on hold and there are just two scenes left for me to write! Sorry, Scambitious 2.

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About Mina

Mina V. Esguerra writes and publishes romance novels. She founded #RomanceClass, a community of Filipino authors of romance in English.
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