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The Happy Writer with Marissa Meyer

Arts & Culture Podcasts

Rejection! Impostor Syndrome! Writer's Block! Writing can be a tricky business. Marissa Meyer interviews authors on how we can overcome various obstacles and bring more joy to our writing process.

Rejection! Impostor Syndrome! Writer's Block! Writing can be a tricky business. Marissa Meyer interviews authors on how we can overcome various obstacles and bring more joy to our writing process.


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Rejection! Impostor Syndrome! Writer's Block! Writing can be a tricky business. Marissa Meyer interviews authors on how we can overcome various obstacles and bring more joy to our writing process.




Guest: Leslie Vedder

Marissa chats with Leslie Vedder about her debut fairy-tale-inspired fantasy - THE BONE SPINDLE - as well as crafting adventurous puzzles and booby traps in the written word, when we're so used to seeing them in a visual format; using backstory to develop realistic character flaws that will create lots of tension and drive the plot forward; deciding what to keep and what to change in order to make your fairy tale retelling feel new and interesting in the genre; balancing a mix of romantic...


Guests: Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera

In our first episode for 2022, Marissa chats with Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera about their new contemporary romance - HERE'S TO US - as well as our semi-charmed road-to-publication stories; the expectations within the romance genre and how it can strengthen the story to approach every relationship as if you don't already know how it's going to end; lots of talk about writing loveable secondary characters, from best friends to boyfriends; how deadlines and pandemics impacted the...


Guest: Chelsea Bobulski

For our final episode of 2021, Marissa chats with Chelsea Bobulski about her new four-book contemporary series - ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS - as well as the ins and outs of planning a series of rapid release companion novels, and why one might want to avoid overlapping timelines if possible; why your "learning" manuscripts are just as important as the book that gets published; the pros and cons of writing and releasing books on an accelerated schedule; the power of having a great support...


Guest: Claire Winn

Marissa chats with Claire Winn about her debut sci-fi novel - CITY OF SHATTERED LIGHT - as well as some rules for worldbuilding, including guidance into how deep your knowledge of the world should go and how much to reveal to the reader in order to create an immersive experience; seeking out knowledgeable resources to assist with things you don't fully understand, such as advanced technology or brain science; figuring out your story's obstacles first and your plot second, so that you can lay...


Guests: Amanda Foody & Christine Lynn Herman

Marissa chats with writing duo Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman about their young adult fantasy - ALL OF US VILLAINS - as well as using archetypes to guide your decisions when building a large cast of characters, then adding layers through personality details; developing a complex magic system and determining when and how to break your own magic rules; being intentional with your setting details and descriptions in order to evoke a certain mood; and lots of insight into the co-writing...


Guest: Tif Marcelo

Marissa chats with Tif Marcelo about her contemporary YA romance - THE HOLIDAY SWITCH - as well as the importance of being flexible, whether that's making adjustment to your career path or trying something new with your writing to see where it leads; discovering your characters in your first draft, and "putting them together" in revisions - yes, even if it means having to rewrite all your dialogue; balancing romantic sparks with ongoing tension by first determining where your protagonist and...


Guest: Jennifer Donnelly

Marissa chats with Jennifer Donnelly about her fairy tale retellings - STEPSISTER and POISONED - as well as Marissa's newest novel - GILDED! We delve into some of the deeper themes in our favorite stories, and how writers can use retellings to change an ongoing discussion in our society; how so many retellings come from a place of irritation with the source material and why creators are often drawn to "set the story right"; why embracing the darkness in fairy tales adds a layer of...


Guest: Roseanne A. Brown

Marissa chats with Roseanne A. Brown about her new fantasy novel - A PSALM OF STORMS AND SILENCE - as well as weaving together two storylines with alternating points of view by ensuring that each subplot consistently informs the other; developing big stakes and powerful motivations for your protagonists that will continuously increase the book's suspense; using riddles (or spells, or clues, or prophecies...) as a clever plot device to build forward momentum into your plot; some tips for...


Bonus: Jill Grinberg, Literary Agent

In this bonus episode, Marissa chats with her own literary agent - Jill Grinberg of Jill Grinberg Literary Management. Answering questions from listeners, topics include how Jill became Marissa's agent and the author/agent relationship (which shares a lot of similarities to marriage); what, exactly, a literary agent does and why it's important to find one that shares your overall vision; why authors should think long-term when it comes to career planning, and how many sustainable writing...


Guest: Rachel Smythe

Marissa chats with Rachel Smythe about her debut graphic novel - LORE OLYMPUS, Volume 1 - collected from her popular web comic. Topics include recontextualizing Greek myths for a modern audience; respecting your old work - no matter how cringy you feel about it - because it got you to where you are on your creative journey today; how sadness and angst in our reading material can actually make us happier (who knew?); some thoughts on writing serialized stories, such as web comics, and how...


Guest: Soman Chainani

Marissa chats with Soman Chainani about his new story collection - BEASTS AND BEAUTY: DANGEROUS TALES - as well as the incredible feeling of gratitude one feels when they know they are following their true calling in life; weaving layers and subtext into your short stories, and how those nuances will be interpreted differently by readers depending on their age, experience, and imagination; taking a deeper look at the questions inherent in fairy tales in order to reinterpret their themes,...


Guest: Ayana Gray

Marissa chats with Ayana Gray about her debut young adult fantasy - BEASTS OF PREY - as well as using online resources to learn from other writers about the publishing journey, and as a way to know that you're not alone; choosing your descriptive words carefully in order to evoke a particular feeling, whether you're describing a minor character or a great mythical beast inspired by real-world lore; striking that balance between fast-paced action and deep emotional moments, even when they...


Guest: Sarah Rhea Werner

Marissa chats with Sarah Rhea Werner - host of the Write Now podcast and creator of the award-winning audio drama "Girl in Space" - about All Things Creativity! Topics include the definition of "creativity" and how all types of creative expression deserve credit and affirmation; why the practice of conscious consumption is step one in generating lots of ideas; keeping a journal and playing the "what if?" game as effective brainstorming strategies; lots of tips for overcoming various writing...


Guest: Marie Lu

Marissa is joined by listener Allison Phillips to chat with Marie Lu about her new futuristic duology - SKYHUNTER and STEELSTRIKER - as well as how characters who speak different languages and have different communication styles makes for some unique writing challenges, but ultimately add depth and realism to your world building; what to do with that book of your heart when the market isn't quite ready for it; a great tip for differentiating character voices when writing from two separate...


Guest: Kendare Blake

Marissa joins Kendare Blake for the virtual launch event of her new paranormal murder mystery - ALL THESE BODIES - hosted by Square Books. Topics include the horrifying real-life murders that inspired the story; what happens when you make a book idea wait to be told, sometimes for years, while you tackle other projects; the decision to leave an ending open to reader interpretation, and how to get it right; why the protagonist of your tale may not make the best narrator, and how a strong...


Guest: Caitlin Sangster

Marissa chats with Caitlin Sangster, host of the Lit Service Podcast, about her new fantasy novel - SHE WHO RIDES THE STORM - as well as writing that complex, multi-POV fantasy heist novel, and why Caitlin starts with the characters and their motives; determining the "aboutness" of your story, and how to dig deeper into the heart of your book to uncover the themes you most want your readers to come away with; some things to keep in mind when switching from writing young adult to middle...


Guest: Farah Naz Rishi

Marissa chats with Farah Naz Rishi about her new contemporary romance - IT ALL COMES BACK TO YOU - as well as writing sibling dynamics and relationships that are as complex and interesting as real-world families; the roles that fate and coincidence can play in a romantic storyline; a few interesting narration techniques that act like different camera lenses through which to view the story and characters; how we tend to be inspired by issues that concern us in the real-world, and how we can...


Guest: Sarah Raughley

Marissa chats with Sarah Raughley about her new historical fantasy - THE BONES OF RUIN - as well as balancing incredible superpowers with weaknesses and drawbacks - whether physical, emotional, or psychological; using your protagonist's greatest desires, and the consequences they'll face if they don't get what they want, to create escalating suspense; a number of things to consider when designing an in-story tournament or competition; how grounding your historical fantasy in well-researched...


Guest: Maryrose Wood

Marissa is joined by her daughters, Sloane and Delaney, to chat with Maryrose Wood about her new middle grade novel - ALICE'S FARM: A RABBIT'S TALE - as well as writing in third person omniscient point of view (yes, even for young readers!) and how multiple perspectives can be used to show the interconnectedness of your characters, subplots, and the world at large; how following our writerly intuition often pays off with a serendipitous gift from the universe... or research; crafting...


Guest: Victoria Aveyard

Marissa chats with Victoria Aveyard about her new fantasy novel - REALM BREAKER - as well as a surplus of juicy craft discussion! Topics include the three-act, eight-sequence structure for screenwriting and how it can be applied to novels and series; focusing on plot escalation over the course of multiple books, and using callbacks to show how far your characters have come; a friendlier way to think about the age-old plotter vs. pantser debate; some thoughts on long-term career planning and...