Featured Story of the Week: Paint by Numbers

Poumons faux is one of Mibba's many brilliant authors. She has a very diverse portfolio, including fanfictions for everything from The Maine to One Direction, and even some originals. Paint by Numbers is the perfect example of one her brilliant works.

Give us a brief summary of Paint by Numbers.

Paint By Numbers is a The Maine fan fiction centered around John O'Callaghan. It's about a young boy, Jaxon, (who is a really big fan of The Maine) who is in the hospital. Jaxon writes a letter to John, telling him that all he wants is to meet him. John finds himself caring about Jaxon in a very brotherly way, spending a lot of his time with him and his older sister Lo.

How did you choose the title for 'Paint by Numbers'?

I've been a huge fan of Ed Sheeran for a long time and I was listening to Lego House when I first started drafting this story. It felt like such an appropriate song for the tone of the story. Just the idea of something being broken and building it back up together.

What inspired you to write this story?

My sister is a huge fan of The Maine and their music has been such a staple in her life. I thought it would be interesting to write a story that involved more of a family dynamic; where the drama wouldn't be centered around a normal relationship. When I was in the hospital with my sister three years ago I met a girl named Morgana who'd had a stroke and was in rehab. I based Jaxon's character completely around her and what she had gone through.

How long have you been working on Paint by Numbers?

It took me all summer and part of the fall to work on the story. I would write chapters and then spend a week editing because I wanted them to be perfect.

On average, how much time do you spend writing this story each week?

Well it's finished now but when I was writing I usually took three or four days to write it. I usually write in small incriminates.

What is your favorite thing about writing Paint by Numbers?

My favorite thing is probably how parallel to my life Lo and Jax were. It was easy to write them because I go through similar challenges everyday with my younger sister. Being able to write about a topic that I know so well was almost like journaling, so it very natural. Plus I was writing about one of my favorite musicians so that always made it fun.

What is the most challenging thing about writing it?

Probably the same as my favorite thing; that I know the topic so well. It was hard, on some chapters, to think about difficulties that I went through in my life and write them down for other people to read. The last chapter was the hardest, in the beginning, because I knew the anxious feeling of going to the emergency room with someone.

Have you ever experienced writer's block with Paint by Numbers? If so, how did you overcome it?

I was lucky not to have too much writer's block during this. There were moments when I hesitated to write something because I didn't want the story to take too much of a dark tone.

Do you write with an outline, or just wing it?

Usually I just wing it...if I write an outline I never stick to it.

Do you have any pre/post writing rituals?

Just good music on repeat. I have a writing playlist that I always listen to when I'm trying to think of ideas...everything comes from something else. Coffee too. Lots of coffee, usually dark.

How did you feel as this story was coming to a close?

I felt sort of sad. I felt like it was ending itself so I didn't want to keep pushing to write something. But I always feel sad when something I'm writing is ending. Like I've had some personal relationship with my story and that's ending...it's weird I know.

Do you have anything new your readers should look out for?

I'm writing a short holiday story that's going to act as an interlude into a sequel. I think the sequel will be starting around January. I think it's going to be a bit more serious and maybe a tad bit darker than Paint By Numbers was. I am also working on doing a rewrite of Paint By Numbers.

Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?

Just that it's meant so much to have them reading and especially commenting. Sometimes I don't always get to replying but I love seeing comments and knowing that people enjoyed it, or even if they didn't and they think I should change something.

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