We are doubling down on Imagines interviews today. Earlier today we brought you an interview with Rebecca Sky and now we’re bringing you Rebecca Sky. Her story Stick It To Eve features Rebel Wilson. Here’s a quick summary of the Imagine: You are a standup who has blown her last couple gigs; Rebel gives you confidence and helps you out with your school reunion vs. a bully.
Wattpad and Gallery Books have teamed with International Bestselling Author Anna Todd for Imagines. Imagines is some of the greatest Fan Fic authors from Wattpad writing a unique anthology of “imagines.” Imagine your favorite day with celebrity. What you imagine isn’t half of what these authors imagine – well at least it isn’t half of what I imagined.
Read our interview below!
What was it about Wattpad that made you want to start writing on it?
My little brother introduced me to Wattpad. I was his supervisor at the time, and he’d get me to read stories during work hoping he could get out of his duties—his master plan was a success. I got hooked on discovering new writers. It was the same satisfaction as when I discovered a new band before they went mainstream. There were millions of stories that I got to explore. And stories have always been a passion of mine. We didn’t have TV growing up so I’d make up wild tales and act them out for my siblings, it was very Little Women. Anyway, my brother started to encourage me to write my stories down and post them on Wattpad. I’ve always had an infinity for storytelling, though my English skills left something to be desired. (My high school teacher told me I was her most creative student—she was referring to my spelling and grammar). So needless to say I never thought I would be a writer. But from the very first line I wrote for Wattpad, I was hooked. I immersed myself in the site, and learning how to write, and was surprised at the welcome reception a very beginning writer like me had. I knew I’d found a safe place to explore this new passion.
What’s the biggest lesson that you have learned from writing on Wattpad?
You know I’ve learned so much on Wattpad. But the lesson I carry closest to my heart is that what I have to offer matters. It doesn’t have to be perfect, or fit into any societal molds, and my art doesn’t have to mimic the successes of writer’s who have gone before me. I can come to Wattpad as I am, sharing my perfectly imperfect work, with the understanding that I will continue to do my best and learn and grow. There are readers on the site who’ve been with me through some really bad grammar years and through stories where my plotting went on tangents wilder than Harry Styles bed head. But I learn best by making mistakes, and exploring the art of writing and storytelling, and that’s totally okay. Not everyone learns the same way, and I have grown so much in my ability. If I didn’t take the chance on myself and post my writing, I would’ve never discovered that even while imperfect I can connect and impact people.
How do you write – do you outline the book or do you just write off the cuff?
I do a little of everything. But mostly I tend to pants(write by the seat of my pants) and plot at the same time, jumping all around the different acts of the story writing down ideas—it results in my office walls being papered in napkins, sticky notes, and charts, and my voice memos taking up the majority of my phone storage. The end of that chaos is a very detailed outline that I then go back and fill in. My Wattpad work is mostly all pants, I get inspired by something and start to post it, then I get to have fun exploring the story and characters alongside my readers and utilizing their expectations/reactions for inspiration. It’s a unique way to write, very community driven, very flexible, not how things are typically done in the professional writing community. It’s my goal to publish books, and those tend to need to be tightly plotted, and a lot of hard, often isolating work. Writing on Wattpad allows me to be whimsical, communal, and explorative with my craft.
What conventionally published authors are your biggest influences?
I adore Laini Taylor, her work is so poetic and beautiful and she incorporates her husband’s art into her writing in unique ways. I also love J.K. Rowling, I mean who doesn’t? I think the way she creates places for her readers to gather and celebrate the characters and world is ingenious. I’ve spent many good hours wandering Pottermore. #TeamRavenclaw
What is the biggest misconception about authors on Wattpad? What do you want people to know?
I’ve heard people say that writing on Wattpad lacks quality. And while it’s not all Pulitzer winners, a lot of it is, or should be. One of my favorite things about Wattpad is that it provides a free platform for people around the world to write and read. I’ve seen so many of my friends grow in their ability, a lot of whom are from non-English speaking countries. You’ll find everything from entire novels written in text message level English, to original fiction from pros like Margaret Atwood. Wattpad is spreading and encouraging literacy, at all levels, for all people. And, if I may be so bold to claim, I believe Wattpad is an invaluable support for the traditional publishing community. My own ability has transformed, and I went from purchasing one or two print books a year to buying at least one print book a week, and I know my Wattpad friends are the same.
What was it like – finding out that you were getting published?
It still doesn’t feel real. I don’t think it will until I hold it. It’s been a dream of mine to walk into a bookstore and see my name on a shelf. Thanks to Wattpad that’s going to be a reality!
Tell us about Imagines. What can we expect?
33 of Wattpad’s top authors have written stories about their favorite celebrities. I’ve had the privilege to read a few of the other authors stories and I can tell you, readers should expect to laugh, swoon, and possibly even cry as they get immersed in this one of a kind reading experience.
What made you want to be part of the Imagines book?
What drew me to this project, and what I like about fanfiction in general, is that it’s an avenue to express a connection to someone/something, to show appreciation, to stay with worlds/characters you love, and to connect with like-minded individuals (yay for fandoms!). One of the things I’m most looking forward to when the Imagines book launches is finding other Rebel Wilson fans I can geek out with. There’s a lot of parody and criticism of celebrities in mainstream media. Not to mention public attacks on social media. Have you ever seen the videos where celebs read mean tweets? It’s heartbreaking, some of the things people say to them. I look at the Imagines anthology as a way to counteract that negativity and showcase positive interactions with celebrities.
What’s the hardest thing about writing fan fiction? Do you feel a pressure to live up to the expectations of the fandom?
The hardest thing for me is living up to my own expectation. If Rebel ever reads my piece I want her to be proud, to feel like I captured who she is and what she stands for. Things like confidence, humor, pushing outside societal boxes.
I’m not worried about the fandom; fandoms are made up of some of the most supportive people you’ll ever meet. In my experience, as long as you’re not tearing down their celeb, you’ll have a friend for life.
Tell us what you can about your story in Imagines.
My story is about an awkward girl who’s trying to make it as a comedian, but she has a lot of confidence issues that result in weird fears like stage fright—which isn’t exactly helpful for a comedian. She ends up botching a show that Rebel (her hero) happens to be at, and Rebel takes her under her wing and helps her realize that she’s awesome just the way she is!
What is the one piece of advice that you would give your fellow Wattpad writers?
Take a chance on yourself, your art, your words, and your dreams.
Give us one author on Wattpad that everyone should be reading.
Oh man, this is a tough one as there’s so many. But if I had to pick only one, I’d pick Monica Sanz. Her writing is flawlessly beautiful and reminiscent of Laini Taylor.
Read our interviews with all of the Imagines authors –