Evolution Thursday: Constance Phillips

Constance Phillips lives in Ohio with her husband, two ready-to-leave-the-nest children, and four canine kids. The perfect fantasy vacation would involve hunting Dracula across Europe with her daughter, who also digs that kind of stuff. When she’s not writing about fairies, shifters, vamps and guardian angels, she’s working side-by-side with her husband in their business.

She’s actively involved in her local Romance Writers of America chapter (MVRWA) and the Southeast Michigan chapter of National Pony Club with her son. When not writing or enjoying the outdoors, she loves reality television or can be found at a Rick Springfield concert (just look for the pink Converse high tops).

Constance blogs regularly at www.constancephillips.com. You can also follow her on Twitter or friend her on Facebook.

Connie, what gave you the idea for Fairyproof?

My writing process is sort-of organic: stories grow from small seeds. With Fairyproof, I had a pretty good sense of my heroine. I knew she was a fairy and that those who were closest to her underestimated her power and emotional strength. I also knew she was hiding out from her brother on the human world.

When I started to think about her conflicts, I was drawn to the idea of a hero who was immune to her power and spells.

What was the first scene you wrote?

The first scene in the book. I’m more pantster than plotter, and always start at the beginning. Once I have the opening solid, I can skip ahead in the plot if I get stuck, but I have to get the beginning right first.

Did you have a scene that you loved but ended up cutting?

Actually, with this book, it was the opposite. My original concept for the story was that it would a short story. I was shooting for 13,000 to 15,000 words. My first draft met those parameters too, but it was only the romantic arc.

After that draft was finished and I reread what I wrote, two things happened. I realized how attached to these characters I’d become and I knew there was so much more story there than I’d actually written.

I went back to the drawing board, and came up with the “fairy murders” subplot and a few new elements.

The final draft was a full length novel in the neighborhood of 84,000 words.

I usually have an a-ha moment, where an insignificant detail becomes something really important. Did you have a moment like that? Will it spoil the plot to tell me what it was?

Yes. This happens to me too. With Fairyproof, I didn’t know why Daniel was fairyproof (immune to Monique’s power) when I started writing. I had a short list of possibilities scribbled on a yellow legal pad, but when the big reveal moment came, I ended up writing something completely different than I thought I would.

That’s all I can really give up without spoiling the plot.

Are you surprised where the story took you? Or if ended up where you planned, were you surprised how you got there?

My absolute, final end point was the one I anticipated, but the subplots and some of the twists in the road were surprises to me. Wrapping up those elements in the end of the book, gave it a bit of a twist I didn’t plan for.

What story idea is sitting in the class right now, raising his hand madly, begging you to call on him?

There are two, actually. When I finished Fairyproof, I had a bit of a crush on Monique’s brother. I started a partial for a follow-up story, with Keiran as the hero. At that time, I felt it wasn’t a wise use of my time to write more than the partial until I found a home for Fairyproof, so I set it aside and began writing another paranormal romance called Resurrecting Harry. I’m in final draft/edit mode on that book. My plans for the immediate future are to write Keiran’s book and finish polishing Harry.

Thank you, Constance! Her cover and book trailer are not yet available, so for now, enjoy this blurb for Fairyproof:

When the leader of a political coup sets his sights on Monique and her unique power to help him overthrow the fairy Council, she seeks refuge in the human world. Now her brother fears she will be the next victim in a string of murdered fairies and is determined to bring her home.

Hiding should be a breeze. She can control any human with a flirtatious smile and an attraction spell. Until she meets Daniel, the only human who’s immune to both.

A year ago, Daniel’s fiancée disappeared with the engagement ring, a family heirloom. He’s ready to move forward with his life, but his mother’s obsession with retrieving the ring makes that impossible. Then Monique walks into his office to apply for a job.

Daniel and Monique can’t deny their attraction, but will the reason he’s Fairyproof be too much to overcome.

Next Thursday, K.W. Penndorf will be here to share her novel’s evolution.

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10 thoughts on “Evolution Thursday: Constance Phillips

  1. What a fantastic interview, Constance, and I love the the blurb on Fairyproof! I can't believe you'd hunt the poor vampires for fun, though… Sad, sad day… jk. Monique and Daniel sound like fun. I can't wait to read this.

  2. Thank you for the vote of confidence, Marne Ann. My daughter and I believe if cable television can pay people to hunt big foot, we should be able to get a reality show hunting vampires (and the free travel to Europe to do so!) Wendy, Thanks again for having me, today.

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