RizzlesCon 2012 – Report
Tess gave some advice about writing:
1. There’s no wrong or right way to write.
2. Outlines and synopsis are good but for Tess the most important thing is an opening idea that has some emotional context. Like the story she read in the Boston Globe about a woman who was brought to the morgue but ended up waking up. Tess’ book “Vanish” came from that idea and became one of the most acclaimed books in Rizzoli & Isles series.
3. Keep conflict constantly in every scene, remember things that go wrong.
4. Don’t stop to edit until the end when you know what the book is about, and then make changes. If she was editing every chapter she would never finish a book. Just as Nora Roberts said, “I can fix a bad page, but I can’t fix a blank page.”
5. Find a literary agent. You can pick up the names of the agents from the books similar to what you write because the authors always thank them on the acknowledgment page. Send a single page query letter introducing yourself and your book. You can also go to writing conferences.
Tess said that sometimes in her books continuity becomes an issue, especially about the small details, like the color of someone’s eyes or how much time had passed. On the show they always have someone who watches for continuity to make sure everything fits.
When talking about so-called ‘writing block’ Tess recommended a book “Imagine: How Creativity Works” by Jonah Lehrer, which is a good example of certain things that happen to writers and what to do to overcome them. Tess calls ‘writer’s block’ a ‘plot block’. One of the solutions is a hot water, which could be a hot shower or a bath. The hot water relaxes you and you get flashes of creativity. Driving on a long freeway or walking also works. Anything that makes your mind relaxed and get away from the everyday life’s problems.