Coming from the midwest, with a 24 year detour in the Rockies, Julie Cameron has arrived on the coast.
“The water, a change, a friend,“ she lists her reasons for making her way to Seaside with a sparkle in her eye and a ginger tea in hand. Loving the weather and walks on the beach, she is working on her third novel and screenplay. In addition, she runs a business, teaches classes online and works at Beach Books.
This busy, word-rich day-to-day hasn’t always been Julie’s life, however. Until 2006, she worked as a business analyst in Information Technology. She enjoyed it, but, Julie says, in her writer’s rhetoric, “I got burned to a crisp.” So she quit and began dabbling in writing.
As her first foray, she entered a few short story contests with narratives heavy on dialogue. So, when her manager in L.A. asked her about a holiday screenplay, she was willing to test the waters. Her first novel, Christmas Spirit was crafted as a result. It is a mix of romance and the supernatural, and was published as both book and screenplay.
This has led Julie down a unique path as a writer. She has a handle on both genres, so her work can take on either vibe. “I’ll be writing in one mode, then switch. It helps me get unstuck.” she explains. This method helped her turn her second book, Family Spirit, into a screenplay as well. It follows the same cast of characters at Landon Literary as her first novel.
She is now in the throes of the third book in the Landon Legacy series. In regards to her method, she says, she isn’t a “plotter” or a “pants-er”. She often outlines her work before putting pen to page similar to a “plotter”, but doesn’t necessarily follow it. Neither does she fly by her seat, as a “pants-er” going from scene to scene, she explains. So, just as in her modalities as a writer, she is adaptable in this aspect as well.
This flexibility in style brings great latitude to her business, Landon Literary. Named after her novel series, she started her content editing and consulting business in 2013. Julie works with writers to polish their stories, using her proficiency to guide their craft. “My job is to help the author get the best story,” she states. She approaches her client’s work as a reader, looking for inconsistencies or underdeveloped characters.
She isn’t a copy editor, she is an expert advisor. With two published books and screenplays in tow, Julie enjoys sharing what she has learned as an author with her clients. Plus, with her variety of experience and methodology, she can relate to most writers.
Whether it is fear, excitement or feeling stuck, she’s been there. Currently, she’s hung up in her third book, highlighting a stepsister in the Landon family. “It’s just not coming,” Julie says of her character’s narrative. So what does she do? Take big chunks of time, perhaps spending a weekend away from her other commitments to get the story flowing again. “I love to run away and be absorbed in it,” she explains. As a professional, Julie has weathered it all before, which is why her skills and advice as a consultant are so valuable.
But she hasn’t always been here. So what advice does she have to those starting out? Foremost, “Start writing. Meet other writers. Network.” Which is why she joined The Writer’s Guild when she moved to Clatsop County in October. It’s a new organization offering monthly get-togethers and workshops for writers of all levels. And read, she says, of course. In your genre specifically, “Dig into what makes your genre special.” And once you have something down, “Have someone outside of your family read it,” she notes. Which is where she comes in.
Julie’s services are dependent on time or number of words. She offers content editing as a reader with comments and critique on a rough draft, or she can help a writer develop a story through a “chat”. Regardless of which route works for the writer, Julie offers a free consultation beforehand, so potential clients can get to know her and her style. Interested authors can find more information on her website or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.