Thursday, March 22, 2012

March Author Series #16: Challenge Accepted by Stefanie J Pristavu

Have you ever written for spite? Been so frustrated at today's literature that you just had to protest in writing...not by an angry letter, but by your very own book? Or did your friend dare you to write the next best thing? See how Stefanie J Pristavu tackled some of those challenges and is still swinging!

Challenge Accepted

First off, I come from a rather large family – I have two brothers (which down here is a large family). Why is that relevant to my writing? Because I've spent most of my childhood playing pretend. And when I was old enough to write, my bestfriend told me she'd started writing a book.

I was like... 'Hmmm... a book you say? I can do that, too. You're on!'

And we wrote side by side until I actually wanted more. She treated it like a mindless hobby, I persevered – coming up with more characters, plot points, settings... my brain was a mess. I set out to write the best book series the world has ever known. And... I'm still working on it.

But, let's leave ancient history behind. How do I do things now? I'll confess that most of my writing comes from accepted challenges.

From (hee hee)
For instance, I got the idea for Hunters while I was in Prague with my Mom. Mind you, I was reading 'Interview with the Vampire' right then and thinking... wow, this is kinda boring, but has some great elements in it. How would it look like if those elements were combined in some different ways? 

Challenge accepted! I ended up writing about Hunters. And the setting helped a lot.

Saving Grace was me screaming my lungs out at all the bad-New York Times #1 Bestseller-fallen angel books I read last summer. Fallen had some good things, but the plot was not one of them. Could I turn the bad things into good things and make something completely different? Challenge accepted!

What both books represent? My frustration at the heroine always being human while the guy has the special powers and lack of personality. I want my women to be strong and equal to the men. It's how it's meant to be.

The thing is, every time, after the initial glint of the idea shimmers through my mind, the writing bug takes over. I write and write and write, and when I go back to edit, I can't even remember how I got a prticular idea for a plot twist, because, right now, even I wouldn't have thought about that one.

I rise to the challenges my imagination sets for me. So, the next thing I write (I already have an inkling) will be another challenge accepted.

That's right. I write to spite people. Or myself. Mostly myself. Especially when the characters run amok. But they all reach their destination in the end. ;)


Born and raised in Romania, the only girl amongst two brothers, Stefanie has spent her childhood playing pretend and inventing characters. Once she actually learned how to spell in English, she started writing the adventures of her alter egos. Hundreds of thousands of words and thirteen years later, after two years of learning the craft of writing, Steph still tests the waters of her imagination, coming up with stories and characters. Her first Paranormal Romance novel Hunters will be released in July 2012 from Melange publishing.


  1. Congrats on Hunters, Stefanie! This is what we need in writers. I like to see passion in writing and when we're challenged, we're most passionate.

    Great post!

  2. Hi Stefanie :) This is a really excellent blog post. I did side by side writing with my best friend back in middle school. She stopped, but I never did. Thanks for bringing back a great memory.

    I loved all you "challenge accepted" moments. I don't think you'll ever run out of material to write about with a drive like that. Congratulations on your book! :)

  3. Best of luck with Hunters, Stefanie!

    I must admit that one of my influences for starting to write fiction in the first place was reading some of the indie works that were coming out at the time. I thought, "I can do better than this!" That was the challenge that I accepted. I'll let the readers decide if I was successful.

  4. Watch out challenges - here comes Stef! I thought Interview With a Vampire was boring, too. I wish you the best of luck with Hunters!

  5. Hi Stephanie,

    I remember reading "Interview with a Vampire" back in high school and finding it boring as well. I put it aside for ten years, found the paperback in a box in the attic and gave it another try. Second time around, I enjoyed it. Maybe some novels need to wait until you are ready for them. :) Same thing happened with Stephen King's "The Talisman." I didn't like it at all, but ten years later, I picked it up, read it and really enjoyed it. Go figure!

    I Love how you are helping to bring the image of the heroine into the modern world. It's a new world for the female characters and it's about time the novels reflected it.

    Congrats on Hunters.

    Laurel W.

  6. Thanks you guys. You've all been awesome. I can't wait for things to start moving too. Lol, I'm horrible at waiting O:)


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