I’m so pleased to bring you one more Debut Author’s Bash post. Today, I am featuring Katie M. Stout, author of Hello, I Love You. I actually just started reading this book, and I’m loving it so far. Look for my official review to come soon! And hey, you all know me… mix music and writing and I can’t say no!

I asked Katie to share with all of you a bit about her writing style, everything from where she writes, to how she writes. Every author does this differently, and I’m always fascinated to read about the different ways that authors spend their time. So, without further ado, here we go!

I was speaking at an author signing with some other writer friends of mine when we were asked the question we probably hear the most: “What is your advice for aspiring writers?” We all offered our little tidbits that have helped us over the years, but when it came to Lauren Morrill’s turn, she said something that’s really changed how I view the writing process.

Write wherever you can, whenever you can, she said, something she learned from her mentor, Lauren Oliver, who wrote her debut novel Before I Fall while commuting to and from work on the train.

Most of the years I’ve spent as a writer, I’ve sought to keep a schedule and structure in my writing time. I liked to sit at the same place, around the same time every day, and write for a certain number of hours. This worked fine when I was a college student and even when I started working my first real “big girl job” in an office. I could go home every night, sit on my couch, and get some quality writing time.

All this changed when I decided to switch careers and go to graduate school. Suddenly, I was working a shift-job, where I had no idea what my work schedule was from week to week. I was balancing another job that I worked remotely, and I had to study. Writing time became a luxury that I couldn’t afford.

Then the advice Lauren had given came back to my mind. Write wherever you can, whenever you can. I decided to try it.

It’s been about four months since I’ve started that Wherever, Whenever method, and I’ve written thousands of words on my phone. I write on my lunch break at work. I write sitting in my car if I’m early meeting someone. I write if I have long trips riding in the car. It’s totally revolutionized the way I draft.

Couple this with the fact that I’ve been using Rachel Aaron’s method of writing faster, and while my time spent writing has really diminished, my productivity has managed to stay about the same. (Outlining changed my life! Spoken as a former “pantser,” it really is true that you write faster and better drafts when you actually know what’s going to happen in the story.)

When asked what my writing advice is, I used to quote something I heard Beth Revis say about living your life, rather than observing it, and how that will create the best stories. And I still think that’s true, but it’s no longer what I suggest to people. My new advice (and something I’ve also been learning)?

Be flexible.

It’s great if you have the capacity to have a writing schedule, where you get to set aside specific time for it. But for those of you who are stay at home moms with toddlers or are working another (or two) jobs or students whose lives are constantly being turned upside down: don’t be afraid to write Wherever, Whenever you can.

And don’t be afraid to change your process. I used to be a pantser with a pretty rigid structure. I wanted to be sitting at my house, with certain music playing, and have hours to stare at the computer until inspiration struck. And that’s how I drafted my debut, Hello, I Love You. But life doesn’t always let you stick to your schedules.

Be willing to change. Be willing to grow. And above all, be willing to write whenever and wherever inspiration strikes.

I agree, wholeheartedly! Write whenever and wherever you can, and be willing to change and grow. What exceptional advice from a lovely lady! Thank you SO much, Katie, for coming on today! Here’s a little about Katie and her book:

About Hello, I Love You:

helloiloveyouGrace Wilde is running-from the multi-million dollar mansion her record producer father bought, the famous older brother who’s topped the country music charts five years in a row, and the mother who blames her for her brother’s breakdown. Grace escapes to the farthest place from home she can think of, a boarding school in Korea, hoping for a fresh start.

She wants nothing to do with music, but when her roommate Sophie’s twin brother Jason turns out to be the newest Korean pop music superstar, Grace is thrust back into the world of fame. She can’t stand Jason, whose celebrity status is only outmatched by his oversized ego, but they form a tenuous alliance for the sake of her friendship with Sophie. As the months go by and Grace adjusts to her new life in Korea, even she can’t deny the sparks flying between her and the KPOP idol.

Soon, Grace realizes that her feelings for Jason threaten her promise to herself that she’ll leave behind the music industry that destroyed her family. But can Grace ignore her attraction to Jason and her undeniable pull of the music she was born to write? Sweet, fun, and romantic, Katie M. Stout’s Hello, I Love You explores what it means to experience first love and discover who you really are in the process.

Buy Hello, I Love You today at one of the following online retailers:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Booksamillion | IndieBound | Book Depository

About Katie M. Stout:

Katie M. Stout is a Young Adult author of the debut novel Hello, I Love Youwhich released under St. Martin’s Press on June 9, 2015.

Katie is from Atlanta, Georgia, and has a passion for travel which has taken her all over the world. She has lived in both Thailand and England, and has visited five continents. Being a proper Southern girl, she prefers her tea sweet, and has come to love English sticky toffee pudding. She also works for a Christian charity, manning their social media and marketing.

Katie’s blog, One Page At a Time, discusses her book, her writing, reviews and various News and Events.