I write young adult science fiction. At least, that’s what I’ve written so far. Rewind, which comes out in April 2018, is my debut novel so it’s hard to say what my writing will eventually encompass. I hope it will spread out over many topics, genres, themes . . . That said, the story ideas that grab me have so far all turned into: young adult science fiction.
Rewind tells the story of a group of teenagers who have the ability to freeze and rewind time. It’s a thriller set in my home town (Portland, OR), with fast action and life-or-death consequences. I’m also working on a novel about a girl whose physical age is not stable; every morning she wakes up looking either older or younger than she was the night before. And I have a third story bouncing around, too, this one involving kids who work as swappers, people who take on someone else’s body in order to help them lose weight. See what I mean? Teenagers. Science fiction. Even the ones that didn’t start out that way (the aging one did not) someone morph into young adult once I start working out the kinks.
I write because it’s fun. Because it’s incredibly challenging. Because nothing about writing is boring. Because there is no greater luxury than getting to spend hours immersed in my own imagination. That other people actually want to read said imaginings is about the most amazing thing that’s ever happened to me.
Slowly. I’m not one of those overnight success stories. I don’t whip out a new book every six months – in part because I’m terrible at plotting. I come up with what I think are these really cool concepts (hey! Wouldn’t it be fun to freeze time?) and then spend months tearing my brain apart trying to put together a story to go along with it. I’ve finally figured out that what works best for me is to force myself to plow through a (really terrible) first draft just so I can get the outlines of a story on the page. Once I have something to work with, I go back and smooth out the problems and cut out scenes and add new ones and rethink plot points and replace characters and edit and edit and edit. That’s the fun part. That’s the part where this germ of an idea slowly grows into a full-fledged story, with living, breathing characters who laugh and cry and learn and grow. It’s a lot of work and it’s also a little bit like magic. Or science fiction.
Carolyn O’Doherty lives and works in Portland, OR, where, most disappointingly, time moves only at a very predictable pace. When not writing, she uses her free time to develop affordable housing. Carolyn has an MFA in Creative Writing from Stonecoast, along with degrees in both psychology (Wesleyan) and urban planning (UC Berkeley). She figured that the best possible use of an expertise in both people and places was to make up entirely new ones. Rewind is her debut novel. The sequel comes out in spring 2019.
Linda K. Sienkiewicz is the author of the award-winning novel In the Context of Love, a story about one woman’s need to tell her truth without shame.
2017 New Apple Book Awards Official Selection
2016 Sarton Women’s Fiction Finalist
2016 Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist
2016 Readers’ Favorite Finalist
2016 USA Book News Best Book Finalist
“…at once a love story, a cautionary tale, and an inspirational journey.” ~ Bonnie Jo Campbell, author of National Book Award Finalist, American Salvage, and critically acclaimed Once Upon a River,and Mothers, Tell Your Daughters