Every once in a while, someone pops into a group and makes everything sparkle with fun and laughter. Francisco Cordoba is a gifted writer with imagination to spare, and he also takes time out from a busy life and career to tease and encourage other writers in the Scribophile groups.
A passionate romantic and obsessive equestrian, Francisco Cordoba has been writing for as long as he can remember. However, it’s only in the last few years, since completing his Master’s Degree in Linguistics, and suffering regular chastisement from his wife, that he has dared to fully unleash his muse. He loves writing about romance, relationships, adventures and sex.
Francisco lives a largely reclusive life tucked away in an old farmhouse, somewhere, with his wife, teenage son, four cats, two dogs, horse, ducks, and chickens. He freely admits to loving them all, although he refuses to allow more than three bodies to occupy his bed at any one time. His six-book slightly erotic, paranormally romantic, mysteriously suspenseful, thrillingly adventurous, and possibly fictional debut series, The Horsemen of Golegã, will be self-published soon.
Website and Blog: http://franciscocordoba.com/
I had the pleasure of discussing some questions about writing and his process in particular. Here is the result.
D.L. Hungerford: When you develop characters, do you already know who they are before you begin writing or do you let them develop as you go?
Francisco Cordoba: I’ll have the basics in my head. But then they develop and grow, sometimes in surprising directions, as the writing takes place.
DLH: Do you prefer to write alone or in the company of other people?
FC: Alone. Definitely and 100% alone. Aside from some really obvious exceptions, I do most things better alone.
Other people around me, or noise, is hugely distracting. I can put words on the page, but the process becomes mechanical and unsatisfactory. Leave me alone, with silence, or possibly Bach or Enya softly in the background, and I can write.
I have no idea how people get together for write-ins and get anything at all accomplished. I have friends who hangout on Google chat. Sometimes we do writing sprints together. Very occasionally this approach works for me, but it’s rare. Usually, if I want to be productive, I have to stay away from everyone.
DLH: Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?
FC: Computer mostly. I would LOVE to be able to dictate, but I’m largely inarticulate when speaking about my stories. And I’m terribly self-conscious that someone might overhear me. So I have two recording devices that lie on the shelf and laugh at me. I will write longhand in a pinch if there’s no keyboard available, but the idea of then copying all that material into the computer drives me nuts. I’m not a brilliant typist, and writing plus typing the same material seems like a total waste to me. I think I write better on a keyboard now anyway.
I do have an Alphasmart Neo that I got as a present a few years ago. I use it occasionally, but the tiny screen drives me nuts. It also needs good lighting. I might use it more if the screen were back-lit.
DLH: As you know, I managed to complete National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in 2016. What are your feelings on NaNoWriMo?
FC: Great idea, in its place. For the writer who needs a kick-start and an excuse to devote hours daily to getting words on paper, it’s wonderful. It legitimizes writing and makes it a valid activity, something a lot of writers struggle with. I know I did. I did NaNo and won in 2006. I learned two things from the experience: 1. I could write a reasonable amount in a short time – empowering, 2. The value of planning – what I wrote was a plotless mess.
I tried again the next year but couldn’t get up any enthusiasm. It felt like someone was breathing down my neck with hot fetid breath.
I did it and won again in 2014 and 2015. I’m done. I know I can get words on paper, now I have to work at making those words the best they can be.
DLH: Do you aim for a set amount of words/pages per day?
FC: Every time I do that, something gets in the way, and then I feel frustrated. So, instead of setting myself up to feel like a failure, I just determine to write. I can get anything between 300 and 10,000 words a day. I probably average around 2500.
This amazing writer has some wonderful paranormal romances in the works. Be sure to follow him on any of the links above and watch for his book to be released soon.
Thank you for reading, I’ll be back on Thursday.