Hello, this is Mia Kerick, here today with my new release, It Could Happen, a coming-of-age story of three high school senior best friends falling in love and facing social challenges.
Thank you for hosting me! And on with the blog post…
It’s kind of like making a great cup of coffee.
I got your attention with the coffee comment, didn’t I? Hehehe. I’m a writer—catching your attention with words is my craft. Today I’m going to talk about my writing process. And like I said, it’s comparable to brewing the perfect cup of morning joe.
The process starts with an urge. An “Aha Moment”, so to speak. A moment of sudden inspiration…
“Coffee!!! It’s the ideal time for a delicious mug of Chocolate Ecstasy Sinfully Dark coffee!”
And in my writing process, the Aha Moment went something like this: “The world needs a book about three teenage boys—best friends—who are falling in love against all odds.”
The concept of the novel—the raw idea—sets me into motion.
And now back to coffee…
I need water. Without water, well, there’s no coffee without water.
And I’ve got to have some ground coffee—something dark and rich is best. Sometimes I grind it myself. The coffee comes out better, fresher when I take the time to do this.
And I need a filter… I’ve actually forgotten to use a filter on a few early mornings in the past. The result is coffee you need to chew. So to make drinkable coffee, a filter is a must-have.
As far as my writing process goes, the water is representative of the subsequent rushing flow of ideas about what will happen in the book. What will the conflict be? The themes? How will the romance take shape? Ideas spill forth and splash around in my head. They are not contained. They churn like waves in a rough sea. In the case of It Could Happen, I wanted to deal with a teen’s need for acceptance—given by his parents, his friends, society, but most importantly given by himself. I wanted to deal with the effects of parental neglect. I wanted to explore the opposite of neglect—parental obsession, even ownership, of a teenage child. I wanted to examine bullying in high school.
The coffee part of the metaphor translates into the specific details about the three young men that flavor every drop of the story. Who are the characters? How do they look? Talk? Think? What are their conflicts and challenges? How do they express themselves when not using words? When I take the time to grind the coffee, or labor over these small details, the story can be better savored by the reader. In It Could Happen, I wanted the story to be told by three sometimes-stereotyped students: a jock, an emo/ goth kid, a free-spirited adrenaline junkie. My hope was to show the reader that all athletes aren’t cool and popular, and that there’s a lot going on inside mind of the goth boy, and that seeking adrenaline highs could hint at emotional avoidance. I even found pictures of these characters—Henry, Danny, and Brody—online because the specific images were so important for my writing process.
I would equate the implementation of a crisp, white coffee filter to my first attempt at organization. The filter takes the water and the coffee and turns it into something that can be appreciated. It “structures” the ingredients and turns them into a beverage. My use of a rough outline is my filter. When I create an outline of the plot I am structuring my ideas and characters into a story.
And then I let it percolate.
Okay, most of us use simple electric drip coffee makers or Keurigs to whip up a hasty brew, but for this article’s purposes, I’m going to use my mother’s old-fashioned electric percolator because percolating seems to be a more active process than dripping. Percolating takes time and is a bit more mysterious than the electric drip, don’t you think?
The coffee perks… translating into the next step in my writing process.
I set the manuscript aside and let my ideas seep together. And this part takes time. I don’t revisit my story during the percolation period, even when tempted. I need a little space from the story-brewing process… until it’s time to pick up the pot and pour it into a cup.
When it’s time to pour the coffee, the first thing I notice is the awesome scent in the air. It’s rich and robust and I know I’m in for a treat.
I write the manuscript. For me, this act is associated with frequent adrenaline rushes and hosting deep thoughts that are almost as painful as the ones necessary to complete algebra problems, and a lot of joy and passion… and some hard WORK.
And then I pour in the cream.
Or, in the writing process, I edit the finished product.
I stir in maple syrup.
I edit it again.
Only then do I share it with friends.
Right about now, you’re dying for a mug of rich hot coffee, drenched in cream, aren’t you? And hopefully, you’ll have a burning desire to read It Could Happen along with your cup of coffee.
It Could Happen
Published by: Dreamspinner Press
Publication date: June 5th 2017
Genres: LGBTQ+, New Adult, Romance
Three misfits, mismatched in every way—Henry Perkins, Brody Decker, and Danny Denisco—have been friends throughout high school. Now in their senior year, the boys realize their relationship is changing, that they’re falling in love. But they face opposition at every turn—from outside and from within themselves. Moving to the next level will take all the courage, understanding, and commitment they can muster. But it could happen.
Henry is a star athlete and the son of religious parents who have little concern for the future he wants. Brody is a quirky dreamer and adrenaline junkie, and Danny is an emo artist and the target of bullies. Despite their differences they’ve always had each other’s backs, and with each of them facing a new and unique set of challenges, that support is more important than ever. Is it worth risking the friendship they all depend on for the physical and romantic relationship they all desire?
In this unconventional new adult romance, three gay teens brave societal backlash—as well as the chance that they might lose their treasured friendship—to embark on a committed polyamorous relationship.
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled young men and their relationships, and she believes that sex has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press for providing her with an alternate place to stash her stories.
Mia is proud of her involvement with the Human Rights Campaign and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of marital equality. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.