1. We’ll skip the “tell us about yourself” because coming up with something on the spot is, truly, the bane of an author’s existence. So, let’s start with something a little easier! Tell me what you’re working on at the moment.
Right now, I’m working on the sequel to my first novel Between Worlds. I have another project that is unofficially being called The Story of Us.
2. In as much detail as you would like, tell me about your book(s) that are already out/on the way.
Between Worlds is my debut novel. I self published it back in July. The story starts ten years after a virus appeared out of nowhere and destroyed massive amounts of the population. The majority of what is left are those that were children during the first outbreak. Our protagonist, Faelyn, is one of the guardians who monitor and protect the remaining peoples with her creature partner, Celestin. Together they are one of the only guardian pairs classified as rangers, spending their time travelling and surveying. Things come crashing down for them when signs of the virus return and Faelyn runs into someone from her past who should be dead.
The Story of Us is actually a multi-arc and definitely multiple novel story about a family rooted deep in the tradition of managing supernatural creatures. It focuses on the parents first, primarily the hedgewitch matriarch Benirah Haze and how her family starts – with a horse. Benirah and her husband Henry have eight biological children and each end up affected by the supernatural in one way or another. Vampires, werewolves, witches, professional equestrians, nurses, geniuses, field researchers, immortals, and falling through universes… it’s an exciting story about the importance of family and home, even if family isn’t always blood.
3. As far as the writing process goes—including such things as conception of idea all the way through to money in the bank—what is the least favourite bit? (Everyone has one!)
Editing! Editing my first manuscript was a nightmare. I did everything in google docs and it did me no favors. I wrote this story over the course of 10 years so by the time I was in draft 8, I was filling notebooks to make sure the story stayed straight. A close second would be naming characters, but editing takes the cake.
4. Conversely, what is the bit of the writing process that gets your writery brain grinning?
When I get so immersed in writing a scene that I can’t stop. It doesn’t happen all the time, but that moment where I will literally let the room get dark around me and forgo sleep even though I have to work the next day. When I blink and it’s 5 am? I LIVE for those moments!
5. If you could steal any author’s ability to improve your own work, who would you steal from and why? (e.g. Tolkien’s language skills, Douglas Adams’ humour, etc.)
Sarah J. Maas’s characterization skills. I adore her books and the characters are so unique and well written. Her newest book has completely blown me away and once again she is showering us readers with excellent characters to cry over.
6. Now for some fun! The main character of the book you’re working on (or have recently finished) has kidnapped you for ruining their life. How will you explain that what you’re doing is for the best?
Oh goodness. This could be bad, I put Faelyn through a lot! My reasoning would be “It’s going to hurt but it’s going to make you strong. In the end, everything falls into place. I don’t write sad endings, and I can promise yours is one of my happiest!”
7. You, your main character(s), and the protagonist of the last book you read are playing poker. What are the stakes? Who will win and why?
The last book I read, or rather re-read, was A Natural History of Dragons. With my characters and Lady Elizabeth, she would probably win. Celestin would cheat. Warren would have just learned how to play and would not be exceptionally good at hiding his expressions. Faelyn would suggest using the power charged crystals every guardian uses day to day – Faelyn would give Elizabeth some of hers so she could play – though I have a feeling Elizabeth would also be interested in Celestin’s tail feathers. Or any of Faelyn’s energy activated weapons, books, or other items of interest she happened to be carrying at the time.
8. Let’s face it, writing is hard. What do you think are some traps to avoid in your particular area of expertise? (Whether that be your genre, your knowledge of plot, your character building, your world building, etc.)
Something I originally got caught up with while world building was being too specific in details that really weren’t important. While it’s good to be detailed in world building, there’s a point of over explaining that sort of begins to loop. As the writer its important to lay a framework so things make sense, but its not my job to do the thinking for my readers. Sometimes its best to leave things vague and let the reader’s imagination fill in the rest. There’s a comic called ‘Cow Tools’ published in 1982 by a man named Gary Larson and its an excellent example of this.
9. Anything else you’d like to add? Plots to take over the world, for example. Upcoming release dates, links and things, maybe even your favourite chocolate cake recipe.
I do have an amazing roasted peaches and lavender recipe that I will share because it is life changing.
I’d also like to share my facebook page. I have a lot of fun with it! Each week I share a blog post on a random topic, moodboards for characters, places and creatures, as well as songs from the soundtrack I put together. There’s also lots of memes.