Jess Scott is a writer, novelist, and poet. She is also a prolific blogger and hosts several websites and blogs. After spending the first 20 years of her life in Singapore, she currently calls Maine, USA home.
You write Young Adult, Poetry, and Blog Fiction. Tell us what Blog Fiction is all about.
To me, Blog Fiction simply means telling/crafting a story, via the blog format. It looks deceptively simple to do. It’s quite a challenge to combine classic storytelling elements, with digital media – the latter being something that’s very contemporary!
You spent most of your young life living in Singapore and now live in Maine. How has the change in your geographical location affected your writing?
Maine has been a haven for writers and artists for centuries, so I think it’s pretty cool I’ve resided in Maine for a bit. Maine is indeed, very good for writing (quiet, few distractions)...but I still tend to draw quite a bit of “inspiration” from my upbringing in Singapore. Perhaps I’ll draw inspiration directly from Maine, in a few years’ time, when I’m ready to move on to my next project (I’m currently mainly focused on works of contemporary fiction).
Who is your favorite author and why do you like his/her work?
I’d have to say, Edgar Allan Poe. As a teenager, I got a little bit out of touch with the written word – I was just so busy. I didn’t have much of a life, outside of school. As a 16-year-old dissident, I got a Poe anthology for $5 at a book sale. Reading MS. Found in a Bottle ushered me into the literary world – the following sentence did it for me: “My companion spoke of the lightness of our cargo, and reminded me of the excellent qualities of our ship — but I could not help feeling the utter hopelessness of hope itself, and prepared myself gloomily for that death which I thought nothing could defer beyond an hour...”
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a writer?
Trying to consolidate everything I’d like to say/include, into a book, while still maintaining a certain level of integrity and authenticity. I wish I could just sell out and go all commercial, sometimes, but I will not do/write something, if I feel there is no real value to the piece of work. On the marketing side, I sometimes feel a little overwhelmed (as to how I’m going to stand out as a writer), but I’m just starting out; I’ll keep going.
What is the title of your most recently published book? Briefly tell us what it’s about and let us know where we can buy it.
EyeLeash was published in June 2009 – it’s a coming-of-age, debut blog/IM novel.
Short Synopsis: Jade Ashton is a sassy virgin. In her private blog, she vents about "fitting in" a world where superficiality reigns supreme. Suddenly all logic flies out the window when she meets Novan: the former geek, who's morphed into a delicious songwriter-musician. They decide to be "friends-with-benefits". But it's Novan – with his poems and riddling passages on his own blog – that backs out. EyeLeash captures self-discovery in the 2000s, and showcases the colorful, intricate drama in two youths' relentless search for themselves – and what's really in their hearts.
EyeLeash is available via Amazon @ http://www.amazon.com/EyeLeash-Blog-Novel-Jess-Scott/dp/1448615984 . Other (print and digital) formats available @ http://eyeleash.wordpress.com/.
What are you working on now and when/where do you expect it to be available?
I am currently working on a young adult series. If I can finish it early-mid 2010, I’ll consider it an accomplishment. Ideally, I’d like to launch it sometime in 2010...there’s quite a bit left to do. I have only finished the first quarter of the first draft of the first book.
Writers, especially new writers, are always looking for tips and helpful information. What is the single most important “tip” you can give to a new writer?
I think it’s important to develop one’s own voice, and style, if your intention is to be a famous, accomplished novelist some day. Reading and writing have to be ingrained into your system – not just mere “good habits”...and never let anybody tell you what you can and/or cannot do. If you believe in and (essentially) know what you’re doing – I think it’s possible to make a dream a reality.
What writers organizations claim you as a member? Has membership/lack of membership affected your writing career?
Currently, none; I have always been an individualist and non-conformist, so I’ve never really felt an absolute need to officially join a writers’ organization. I don’t think it has affected my writing career too much – the Internet is great enough for networking. I’ll go with whatever I can get initially; this probably leads me to end up discovering things I otherwise might not have.
Do you have any upcoming book signings or appearances? If so, give us all the details.
Currently, my appearances are predominantly online. I’ll exuberantly embark on public appearances/book signings, when I’m more “famous” (or notorious – either would do).
Here’s your opportunity to tell us anything else you care to share.
Read De Profundis by Oscar Wilde – it’ll do you a power of good.
What are the addresses of your website(s) and blog(s):
http://jesscscott.com/ (Main Site)
http://eyeleash.wordpress.com/ (EyeLeash Website)
http://missfey.blogspot.com/ (4:Play Website; sophomore novel)