CSBB Author Spotlight: pocket-anon
Today’s Captain Swan Big Bang Spotlight features @pocket-anon!
What is your writing process like?
For longer fics, I like to try to outline or write a general summary ahead of time. It helps me work out plot issues and figure out how things will fit together better. The plot may get adjusted as I go, but I always like to have a framework that lets me see at least a chapter or two ahead minimum. Then I just sit down and go where the muse takes me. Often it takes me in unexpected directions, throwing in scenes and elements that I had not originally planned but that still work (or work better) with the original outline.
I incorporate a ton of research usually. I’m a stickler for characterization and realism. In my modern AUs, almost every place I send my characters is based on a real place, down to it’s geographic location with respect to other places. I use Google street view and maps a lot. For “A Fairytale Beginning”, when I wrote Emma and Killian’s afternoon in Central Park, I had their path mapped out and actual photos from the locales in question all over my computer desktop for reference. In “Scar Tissue”, every place Emma and Killian went in the fic was a real place. I look up average temperatures, sunset/sunrise times, restaurant menus, real estate listings, you name it. It just helps me build a realistic narrative and keeps my inner stickler happy. The details about the opal in “A Fairytale Beginning” are also based on research on opals and their actual market value and characteristics. I keep a Pinterest board for every major fic I write where I pin useful online references, outfit/wardrobe ideas, anything, and I go back to it frequently.
At best I have a rough idea of how much narrative I want to try to cover in a chapter, but if the word count gets out of hand or I find a good stopping point/cliffhanger, that’ll change. I generally do not like to write chapters longer than 8K personally just because I find the final editing process torturous if they’re longer than that. I’m constantly editing/adjusting as I go.
I’ll read and re-read and re-read even before I’ve finished the draft. Once the chapter’s finished, I’ll do another couple of passes through the chapter to re-read and edit before I post (if I’m not scheduled to post at a later date). Even after I post, I’ll re-read the thing a few times and go back and fix typos and adjust words as needed. I’ve made minor changes to fics weeks or months later.
And that’s how I write - very much a collaboration of right-brain and left-brain!
What do you think your greatest strength is as a writer?
I get compliments on my characterization and plots and realistic descriptions, but beyond that, I wouldn’t know what convinces people to spend hours with my words.
What’s a particular trope or kind of story you’ve wanted to try, but haven’t gotten to yet?
I don’t know! I kind of take the projects as the inspiration strikes, and while I love a lot of tropes, I haven’t been seized to actually write any of them yet. I think, for me, the trope is usually secondary to the plot, so I don’t go into something specifically saying, for example, “I’m going to write a enemies-to-lovers fic.”
Who is your favorite OUAT character to write?
Killian Jones. Hand(s) down. He is such a wonderful character with so many interesting/fun facets - he can be tortured and brooding, resilient and inspirational, cheeky/flirtatious, and witty/snarky. I love every side of him.
If you are new to the Captain Swan Big Bang, what made you decide to sign up? What are you looking forward to?
It sounded like a good opportunity to continue to do what I probably would have done anyway (find another MC fic to work on at roughly my usual pace) and yet do it with a lot more support and as a member of the CS fic writing community. I’ve been writing for almost a year, but I still feel new to this community some days, so it’s fun to get to join the party. Also, the chance to have some fanart created to go along with my writing is a pretty big carrot to any fic writer, LOL.
Scar Tissue (AO3)
A Fairytale Beginning (AO3)
Somebody Waits For You (AO3)