Cheryce Clayton NaNoWriMo Interview

First of all, tell us a little about yourself.

Cheryce Clayton, writer

Oh, more?

I once named a company PoshRat, it means half-blood and out of culture in Romani. I can remember my great grandfather speaking Choctaw, I’ve spent more years living on Reservations than off, I speak a few words, I go to a couple of PowWows a year, and I know how to bead. And yet I always feel like I’m on the outside looking at a circle of old friends gathered around a fire, not quite sure how to join in and feeling too tall to blend in.

As a writer?

I am not defined as a writer by the facts that that I am a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, that I have spent my life as a trans / bi-sexual woman, that I write speculative fiction, horror, and erotica, that I live with chronic pain, or that I am a survivor of violence.

I am defined as a writer by the stories I write and my first book Obligations is a gender confused story of crossed cultures and the myths of childhood that haunt and hold us back, my webcomic Tales from the Zombpocalypse: Living in the Quarantine Zone starts seven years after the hyped zombie apocalypse as life goes on in a new normal, and the story LowRez is as much a coming of age tale on a future Reservation as my attempt to look forward and project the current Idle No More stand into the cultural vanishing point.

How many times have you attempted NaNoWriMo? Have you succeeded in the past?

Last year was my first NaMo. Yes. The Quiet Ones is at the copy editor right now and I’m planning on a January release.

What can you tell us about your current work in progress for this year’s NaNoWriMo?

I wanted to write two separate novellas, but it’s looking like the first project is going to go long. Surviving the Trans-Human Mechaphilia Riots is a mystery noir / cyberpunk story about a beat up old Marine turned gumshoe trying to solve a murder before he gets murdered with a bit of tastefully written erotica thrown in. It’s a straight line plot /1st person POV which is a challenge for me as I usually write complex head hopping plots with multiple flashbacks.

How are you keeping yourself focused and on track for NaNoWriMo? What advice would you offer to someone else who wanted to attempt it?

I have a dedicated writing time 5 days a week. Just write. The difference between a pro and a dreamer is typing The End, everything else can be fixed in the edit.

If our readers wanted to follow you and your work, what would be the best way to do that?

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

I have a bit of a canned rant about NaMo; as a ghost writer, several of my past contracts have been people who finished a NaMo novel, bragged it up to friends, and then paid to get it rewritten into something readable.  I’ve also seen too many newer writers give up on writing when they perceived themselves as a failure for not completing 50K words on schedule.  NaMo is a good tool for learning and reinforcing good writing habits but its just a tool and if it doesn’t work for you that doesn’t  mean anything bad about you. Scribner doesn’t work for me, but it’s a great tool for others.

My webcomic TZA: Living in the Quarantine Zone will be restarting soon – go catch up on the backstory!

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