Today we are happy to have Melinda Friesen here to answer some questions about herself and her new novel, Enslavement! But first, a bit about the novel!
ENSLAVEMENT (ONE BRIGHT FUTURE #1)
Title: Enslavement (One Bright Future, #1)
Publication date: October 31, 2014
Publisher: Rebelight Publishing Inc.
Author: Melinda Friesen
“One world. One currency. One bright future.”
That’s the promise made by OneEarth Bank after a global economic collapse–but only for those who accept the insertion of a commerce chip.
When Rielle’s parents refuse to comply, government officials tear her family apart. As punishment for her parent’s crimes, Rielle is forced into a Community Service Contract–a legalized form of slavery–and sold a wealthy, abusive banker.
The Banker’s secrets hold the key to Rielle’s freedom, but will she risk prison or even death to escape and search for her family?
Hi, Melinda! Welcome to We Do Write.
Hello, We Do Write. Thank you so much for having me!
At little about myself. I grew up in Hillsboro, Oregon. After graduation, I attended school in Texas. There I met a very interesting Canadian guy. Long story short, we got married, moved to Manitoba, Canada. We have four children, a girl and three boys who range in ages from nine to 18.
I started writing five years ago. I write short stories for all ages and novels for teens. Enslavement is my first novel to achieve publication.
ENSLAVEMENT sounds like an awesome read. How did the idea of the story come to you?
It all started with overwhelming thankfulness. Five years ago, I sat, watching my daughter play piano. I was feeling so grateful that my daughter had this opportunity to hone her talent because many, many people in the world never get the chance.
And then, this thought popped into my head—what if it was all taken away from her. What would it be like to have that talent and then to have the opportunity to express it snatched from you? That is where Enslavement began.
Wow! That would be awful! Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I’m a non-traditional plotter. The story is a movie in my head, so I know what’s going to happen and where it’s going, but I don’t write it down. I’ve tried outlining the plot on paper, but it just doesn’t work for me. I lose all will to write the book after that. The only outlines I use are character outlines. I won’t begin a novel without having a good handle on my characters.
What’s the hardest part of writing for you?
My biggest challenge is definitely beginnings. BEGINNINGS! The bane of my entire existence. It’s not that I struggle with where to begin. I know exactly where my story starts. It’s how to begin that gets me. You know, that amazing opener that instantly intrigues the reader. One of my unpublished manuscripts, Solar, is lamed by my beginning. I’ve had literary agents say, “Great premise, but the beginning didn’t pull me in.” I entered it in a novel contest and got shortlisted. The feedback I received from the adjudicator cited the beginning as its greatest problem. Frustrated sigh.
Yes, I agree. Beginnings are hard. What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?
A pen and paper because I need somewhere to record stray thoughts. The Emotional Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi has to be within reach. I also need to have my music and ear buds.
What are you reading right now?
I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai and Christina Lamb
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
If you could have any super power, what would it be?
Teleportation. I live far away from my family, and I’d love to be able to pop in and visit whenever I want.
Great choice! What's the weirdest thing you've googled?
I needed to know what happens to a dead body if it’s never claimed. I googled it and actually found my answer. Oh, the wonders of Google!
Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...
Cleaning my house, caring for children, cooking, editing for myself or others, researching, cruising social media or thinking about writing. Sometimes I sleep, too.
Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.
Super loud shouts to my husband and kids. You all have been so patient and understanding.
Shout out to my mom, who wouldn’t let me give up on Enslavement.
Thank you to my writers’ groups—Vast Imaginations, Word Junkies and The Anita Factor. You are my counselors, my professors and my friends.
Thank you to my beta readers. You give up your time to help me and expect nothing in return. Your encouragement and advice is indispensable.
Thank you to my readers. I know it’s a huge gamble to read a new author, so thanks for giving me a chance and for all your kind words. I’ve been blown away by the response to this book. All I can say is, “Wow!”
Finally, a shout out to We Do Write for allowing me to share today.
It was our pleasure!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Melinda Friesen writes novels for teens and short stories. Her contest winning short stories have appeared in various periodical and an anthology. Enslavement, book one in the One Bright Future series, is her first novel.