Hobart Book Village Festival of Women Writers welcomes the return of
Sophfronia Scott, one of HBVFWW’s perennial Participating Writers returns for Festival of Women Writers 2018. She is a Harvard University graduate who went on to achieve her MFA in creative writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts.
Sophfronia Scott is the author of the best-selling novel Unforgivable Love, a scintillating re-telling of Dangerous Liasons, set during the Harlem Renaissance. She is the author of This Child of Faith, written with her thirteen-year-old son, Tain, a tender and provocative non-fiction book and she’s written, Love’s Long Line, a provocative and thoughtful rumination on motherhood, race, and contemporary culture. Sophfronia Scott is the author of All I Need to Get By, a novel and author of the much–heralded work of nonfiction Doing Business by the Book: How to Craft a Crowd-Pleasing Book and Attract More Clients and Speaking Engagements Than You Ever Thought Possible. Scott has contributed to three Chicken Soup for the Soul books and the book Forty Things to Do When You Turn Forty. As well, she edited How the Fierce Handle Fear—Secrets to Succeeding in Challenging Times. Sophfronia Scott began her career as a journalist at Time and People Magazine.
In a conversation with Stephanie Nikolopoulos for HBVFWW in 2016, Sophfronia Scott shared how structure allows creativity to flourish, what her editing process looks like, and how to avoid getting pigeonholed as an author.
Nikolopoulos: What is your editing process like? Do you do a quick and messy first draft or do you labor over a near-perfect first draft? Do you get feedback as you’re writing or wait until you have a draft you’re happy with before asking for other writers’ or editors’ opinions?
Scott: I’m very much a story-minded novel writer—I want to make sure I have a strong, multi-layered story that can be sustained over 300 or more pages. I think about who my characters are, what they want, and how to create a dramatic arc for them over the course of the novel’s pages. First I think of my big picture story, then I figure out what my climax point is and I aim for that. I try to know my beginning and ending, and I’m fully aware both might change during the process. Once I know where I’m going I start writing. After I get a draft written, I like to print it up and lay it out so I can look at it and hold each chapter in my hands. That’s when I can see the holes, what’s missing in the manuscript.
When I was in an MFA program I had the luxury of a teacher/editor reading everything as the book progressed. But now my readers are my agent, (Brettne Bloom of The Book Group, who is a fantastic reader and gives precise and thoughtful editorial notes) and a couple of writer friends whose opinions I trust. I also choose one or two readers who are not writers, but they fit my idea of the audience for the book so I can see how they experience the manuscript.
link here Spotlight: Sophfronia Scott 2016 for the entire Q&A
Sophfronia Scott’s blog more thoughts on contemporary life, faith, and wonder
Sophfronia Scott discusses This Child of Faith, written with her young son, Tain about living and growing in contemporary America in light of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
And here’s the hard-working Sophfronia Scott speaking with Women On Fire
For Festival of Women Writers 2018, Sophfronia Scott will read from her work on Sunday, September 9 at 1:45pm. Complete registration information for Hobart Festival of Women Writers 2018
information about Sophfronia Scott and her work at https://sophfronia.com
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