A blog about writing and self publishing

KWL – Ep 188 – Writing Advice and Finishing Your First Draft with Andrew David MacDonald

#188 – Writing Advice and Finishing Your First Draft with Andrew David MacDonald

Debut author Andrew David MacDonald joins us on the podcast this week. Fresh off the release of his first novel, When We Were Vikings, Andrew talks to us about his writing journey, what he has learned about the publishing industry, and he gives us some wonderful advice on finding your character’s voice and how to finish that dreaded first draft.

Debut author Andrew David MacDonald joins us on the podcast this week. Fresh off the release of his first novel, When We Were Vikings, Andrew talks to us about his writing journey and what he has learned about the publishing industry, and he gives us some wonderful advice on finding your character’s voice and how to finish that dreaded first draft.

  • Andrew tells us about what inspired him to start writing and how he evolved from a short story writer to a published novelist
  • He explains his process in developing his main character Zelda’s narrative voice, from figuring out how she sees the world to how she communicates within that world
  • Andrew discusses how he tackled the sensitive topic of Zelda being on the fetal alcohol syndrome spectrum and his desire to create a character that was a fully developed person, not someone defined by her disability
  • He tells us about his research process, and how much he learned about vikings alongside his characters
  • Andrew gives us some great tips for not only writing a first draft, but finishing one, including the benefits of working on multiple projects simultaneously, how to set attainable goals, and why sometimes the best laid plans aren’t the ones that will end up working
  • Andrew explains how teaching with younger people restored his faith in the future of storytelling and changed his perspective on where publishing is headed

Listen to an excerpt of the audio book for When We Were Vikings here!

Links of Interest
Andrew’s Website
When We Were Vikings
Andrew’s Goodreads Article
The World According to Garp
The Fault in Our Stars
The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz
Bird by Bird
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest


Andrew is the author of the novel, When We Were Vikings. His award-winning short stories have appeared in literary journals across the US and Canada.

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