Author Interview: N S Ford

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Be sure to check out We Watch You!

Interview:

1.      Paperback, hardback, audiobook?

Definitely paperbacks, they are cheaper and more lightweight than hardbacks. I don’t listen to audiobooks, I haven’t got the attention span for them.

2.      Pick a genre, any genre!

I can’t choose one … classics, thrillers, science fiction, memoir! Those are the genres I read the most.

3.      What is the first book you remember reading?

I remember looking at Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak in the infant school library and being both entranced and frightened! 

4.      When did you first start writing?

I used to make little books by folding and stapling sheets of paper. I’ve been writing stories pretty much since I learned to write!

5.      What made you want to write? Does it still hold true?

I wanted to write, partly for myself – enjoying crafting a plot, inventing characters, choosing what words to use – and partly for other people, as it’s a great feeling to have people enjoy what you write! That still holds true for me. 

6.      What book/poem are you most proud of creating?

My debut novel We Watch You is an achievement I’m very proud of! I worked at it for 3 years, on and off, changing the genre and adding another ending! Then I formatted, published and marketed it myself.

7.   What genres do you write in (or hope to)?

My usual genre is ‘thriller with a speculative twist’! I like to write a domestic or psychological thriller but with something unexpected and unusual to the genre. Science fiction and psychological horror are also a trademark with me. 

8.   Do you do research for your writing or is it all in your head?

I do a bit of research as required to make the details plausible. The internet is a great help!

9.   To plan, or not to plan your plot?

Absolutely have to plan it, I have a synopsis of each chapter to work from. It can change along the way, but I need to know where it’s going.

10.   What route of publishing have you chosen? Do you plan to stick with it?

I self-published my novel on Amazon, as I hadn’t managed to get any literary agents interested in it (very few of them bothered to reply at all) and I wanted to put the book into readers’ hands this year (2021) rather than keep trying to go through the ‘traditional’ route and getting nowhere. I’m really pleased with how it’s worked out. I plan to stick with self-publishing as it’s a great way to get my work out quickly and have control over it.

11.   If you could live inside another author’s universe, which one would you pick?

I’d want to live in the ‘Railhead’ trilogy by Philip Reeve, which is set in the far future where sentient trains travel across the universe. It’s not a perfect future but it’s not a dystopia either and just imagine being able to visit so many planets!

12.   Do you currently have a WIP?

Yes, I’m working on my 2nd novel, which is a mystery thriller with a music theme.

13.   Do you listen to music as you write? Recommend a favourite writing song.

I find that the best kind of writing music doesn’t need much attention paying to it, so I’m not distracted. I can’t recommend a specific song but I would suggest classical music, film soundtracks, chill-out or instrumentals of any kind.

14.   If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?

Keep going! Don’t worry about getting it perfect, just get the story down and you can refine it later.

15.   Who are your top 5-10 favourite writers?

Classic writers I love include Stella Gibbons, H G Wells, Charlotte Brontë, Jane Austen, Daphne du Maurier and Thomas Hardy. More recent writers whose works I love include Terry Pratchett, Philip Pullman, Lucy Worsley and Anthony Horowitz.

16.   Link us your book/twitter/goodreads or wherever we can best connect with you!

You can find my Twitter, Instagram, Amazon page, Goodreads and blog here.

Reviews & Interviews Roundup

Book Review: Dim Stars (2020)
Book Review: The 13th Zodiac (2021)
Children’s Book Review: Annabelle & Aiden (2016)
Children’s Book Review: Lola: The Bracelet of Courage (2021)
Children’s Book Review: Jack the Unicorn (2021)
Children’s Book Review: The Adventures of Addy: The Tale of the Prince and the Dragon (2021)
Children’s Book Review: How to Hug a Cloud (2021)
Children’s Book Review: Bats at the Library (2008)
Author Interview: Eva Seyler
Author Interview: Amy Campbell
Author Interview: L.A. Wasielewski
Author Interview: Pedro Gabriel
Author Interview: L.L. Stephens
Author Interview: A. K. Ritchie
Author Interview: Amy Maltman
Author Interview: Luther Kross
Author Interview: Sinnamon Carnelian
Author Interview: Ciarán West
Author Interview: Mansur Hasib
Author Interview: Val Neil
Author Interview: Alan Denham
Author Interview: Barbara Avon
Author Interview: Rita A. Rubin
Author Interview: Maxime Jaz
Author Interview: Chris Clancy
Author Interview: Elford Alley
Author Interview: Dan McKeon
Author Interview: Elena Nix
Author Interview: Charlotte Sullivan Wild
Author Interview: M. W. McLeod
Author Interview: L. Krauch
Author Interview: Sarah Bell
Author Interview: D.N. Schmidt
Author Interview: Casie Aufenthie
Author Interview: Courtney Maguire
Author Interview: Diana L. Smith
Author Interview: Jamie Jackson

Author Interview: Eva Seyler

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Be sure to check out The War in Our Hearts!

Interview:

Paperback, hardback, audiobook?
 
Audiobook! I devour hundreds of hours of audiobooks each year, thank you ADHD brain that cannot focus on reading if my hands aren’t occupied doing something else as I listen. As for physical copies, I prefer paperbacks.


Pick a genre, any genre! 

Honestly my first love is nonfiction, especially about historical figures/events, because much of that information feeds into the historical fiction I write. For fiction, I read a LOT of kids’ books (MG and YA), especially historical, but there are some contemporaries I enjoy as well, and I like a good mystery or romance occasionally as well.


Did you publish your first book or is it for your eyes only? 

It is safely in a teal green folder for my eyes only. Although I enjoy teasing people with how utterly rubbish it is. (Because it is the ravings of a teenager.)


How many books/collections have you published so far? 

One novella and two novels (the second of which releases in May next year).


What genres do you write in (or hope to)? 

Historical fiction, although I have one WIP that’s a fictionalised memoir. I also have a historical romance coming down the pipeline – think 1930s-40s snappy comedy. Totally out of my wheelhouse, but the characters are SO FUN.


Do you do research for your writing or is it all in your head? 

I am OBSESSED with research! And I love doing it, so that works well for historical fiction.


To plan, or not to plan your plot? 

I always start with the characters. Then the characters either don’t shut up or won’t cooperate, never anything in between. The plot is always secondary to character development for me.


What route of publishing have you chosen? Do you plan to stick with it? 

I was initially with a small press; now I’m an indie. I’d love to be trad published someday, but I really also do like having full control over my work (and be on my own timetable, heh).


If you could live inside another author’s universe, which one would you pick? 

Probably Narnia! Puddleglum and I would be besties.


Do you currently have a WIP?

Do I ever NOT have a WIP? Lollll. Yes, I have like 5 in varying stages of completion. The one I’ll be working on in Jan-Feb of 2022 is a former middle grade novel that I’m re-writing as an adult novel, that I plan to release in 2023. It’s about a boy and a girl in small-town Oregon in 1925 who start uncloseting the boy’s family skeletons.


Tell me about the character you’ve created who is dearest to your heart. 

I’m going with Leni for this one (from THIS GREAT WILDERNESS that’s coming out next May). I poured a lot of myself into her AND she’s the reason I discovered I’m autistic.


What do you consider your *current* magnum opus? 

100% THIS GREAT WILDERNESS. I love all my stories, but this is the best so far and, I think, will probably always have a super special place in my heart even if technically/craft-wise something that comes along later outdoes it.


Do you have a favourite romance in your books? 

Hee hee. I love ALL the romances. But again I’m going with Leni and Raymond. For now. Because I’m going to be cagey about a future couple. Leni and Raymond are a couple of grouches clashing in the night, with Raymond’s eight-year-old son Anton as the sunshine character. It’s heckin slow burn, too. And only one bed/floor/wagon.


Do you listen to music as you write? 

Here’s my generic writing playlist. I also like orchestral stuff, such as Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony. And here’s another one for #RussianBluesWIP that I also write to a lot.


Do you have any character art for your books, whether by you or another artist? 

I take my character sketches very literally. I don’t have any on my website for Ripples or This Great Wilderness yet (it’s on my to-do list), but I have a gallery here for The War in Our Hearts.


Who are your top 5-10 favourite writers? 

Bill Bryson, Jon Krakauer, Hilary McKay, Christian Miller, A A Milne, Erik Larson, Dorothy Sayers, Elizabeth Wein, Ellen White, Opal Whiteley.


Link us your book/twitter/goodreads or wherever we can best connect with you! 

All my social media links are here. I am most active on Twitter, though.

Author Interview: Amy Campbell

a picture of a cup of coffee, a laptop and a journal/pen; text says 'author interview: indie book spotlight'

Be sure to check out Tales of the Outlaw Mages!

Interview:

1.      Paperback, hardback, audiobook?

Paperback and audiobook. I “read” faster with audio but for eyeball-reading I love me a good paperback. (I don’t have a lot of time to sit and read so audio is super helpful!)

2.      Pick a genre, any genre!

Fantasy. Always fantasy. Bonus points for horses/equines/dragons/griffins.

3.      What is the first book you remember reading?

Billy and Blaze (an old school horse book. I’ve been on brand my whole life).

4.      What book shaped your childhood most?

My childhood and love for writing? Walter Farley’s The Black Stallion. I devoured the whole series. I pretended I was Alec and The Black with my model horses. My first writing effort was a book that very much mirrored The Black Stallion.

5.      When did you first start writing?

I think maybe I was 7?

6.      What made you want to write? Does it still hold true?

I’ve always loved to read, and writing is putting the movie in my head onto a page. I was also the sort of reader who would “interact” with the characters I read about to the point where they nearly leapt off the page and I would pretend to have adventures with them. I still have adventures with my own original characters in my brain now!

7.      What book/poem are you most proud of creating?

My first published book, Breaker. It was always a dream of mine to be a published author. And now I am—through all of my own hard work and determination. And even better, other people like the book. Have found meaning and representation in the book! There’s no greater honor than that.

8.      Did you publish your first book or is it for your eyes only?

I don’t even know where my first books would be. Many computers ago, lost for sure! I never got beyond first drafts, though, and back then (as now) I always hated on my first drafts.

9.      How many books/collections have you published so far?

Two – Breaker and Effigest.

10.   What genres do you write in (or hope to)?

Epic fantasy, but more specifically queer weird western epic fantasy. I know, I know—pick a lane! I can’t.

11.   Do you do research for your writing or is it all in your head?

Both! I got many a book through Interlibrary Loan to figure out some of the things for Breaker, like for the wind pump and some of the recipes.

12.   To plan, or not to plan your plot?

I tried with Breaker. I really did. But it was a battle the whole time. I tried again with Effigest and learned that I just have to write a dirty first draft and go from there, without an outline in the world!

13.   What route of publishing have you chosen? Do you plan to stick with it?

Indie. Yes, because I like the control over my product. Everything about it is me. I don’t want to sign away the rights to my characters to someone else.

14.   If you could live inside another author’s universe, which one would you pick? (Ex: Middle Earth, Narnia, etc.)

Robin Hobb’s Realm of the Elderlings.

15.   Do you currently have a WIP?

Yes, just finished the first draft of Dreamer. Hoping it will release late spring/early summer 2022!

16.   Tell me about the character you’ve created who is dearest to your heart.

Blaise, definitely Blaise. Though I love all of them. He’s one of my oldest characters – he’s existed in my head for more than 20 years! He was always a mage, always had a slew of problems. But at heart he’s always been a kind soul, wanting to do the right thing. But this time around he got upgraded into a queer asexual magic cowboy riding a pegasus so … I think that makes him extra fun. Along with the boatload of baggage I gave the poor guy. Also, he decided he wanted to be a baker so … that made life interesting.

17.   What do you consider your *current* magnum opus?

I guess it would be Breaker?

18.   Do you have a favourite romance in your books? Or, if yours features no romance, tell us about your favourite character friendship!

Even though one of my main characters is asexual, I strive to still represent the fact that aces can have deep, loving relationships. Blaise has a boyfriend, and their relationship didn’t begin under the best of circumstances. But it’s bloomed in a way that makes me really love the pair.

19.   Do you listen to music as you write? Recommend a favourite writing song.

Only if my kids are around and/or my husband is gaming in the same room that I’m writing in. I have quite a long playlist for my writing. A favorite that really represents a lot of my characters is ‘Lions Inside’ by Valley of Wolves.

20.   Do you have any character art for your books, whether by you or another artist? (Be sure to credit/link if you can!)

I do! A very talented artist on TikTok drew fan art of my characters, and I loved her work so I had to hire her to do commissions. So far Mary Carman/Sapphic Witchy has completed work for Blaise and Emrys, and Jack and Zepheus. 

21.   If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?

Read a lot. Write a lot. If writing is your dream, don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do it.

22.   Have you entered any writer contests? Tell us about your experience!

I entered Breaker in the Equus Film & Arts Festival literary division. I won Reserve Champion in the Equine Fiction – Western category! I read Equus magazine all the time growing up, so it’s pretty exciting to be a Reserve Champion in anything with them!

23.   Who are your top 5-10 favourite writers?

Samantha Kroese, long time friend and indie author who gave me the confidence to try to publish!

A.R.K. Horton
Patricia Briggs
Kevin Hearne
Robin Hobb

24.   Link us your book/twitter/goodreads or wherever we can best connect with you!

Website
Facebook
Instagram
TikTok
BookBub
Goodreads

Book Review: Dim Stars (2020)

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Dim Stars: A Novel of Outer-Space Shenanigans by Brian P. Rubin

Plenty of his classmates were drafted into the Fleet when the Forger War broke out, just like he was. But none of them became galaxy-famous war heroes when they were still teenagers. Dash hadn’t aspired to much before the war started, so he wasn’t sure how to aspire to anything at all once it ended.

Oh, this book! You simply must give this book a go! It’s charming and wonderful!

Firstly, it must be pointed out that this book has a jaw-droppingly cool cover. Better still, from the start, Dim Stars pulls you right in and is great fun! The humour is seriously great! Like,

“We’re one ship on an asteroid filled with who-knows-how-many people who want to shoot at us, which will be jumping into—if I’m not mistaken—another dimension in four minutes.”

Due to the fact there’s a first mate aboard who is a talking Octopus, coupled with the gorgeous cover, my brain instantly imagined an animated version of Dim Stars that was basically Below Decks meets Final Space for the first chapter 😉

Not unlike my beloved Mooncake, Squix, the Octopus in Dim Stars, is the first mate aboard the once-famous Captain Dashiell Drake’s ship and travels the galaxy with him. All comparisons instantly faded, however, as I was quickly immersed in the universe and the world-building is great! You can tell Rubin spent a lot of time fleshing everything out.

Escaping homicidal armored alien invaders was bad enough. Having to exercise while doing it was even worse.

The main characters are Kenzie and Dash: fourteen year old Kenzie’s just bought a place in Dash’s crew so that she can stick it on her CV. Dash is once-famous, ‘hero of Gantoid IV and intergalactic adventurer’ and now using his old fame to pay the bills with Squix by offering places to cadets for a fee. When Kenzie gets a chance to fly with Dash, she ends up on an adventure neither were prepared for.

What I like most about this book was how easy it was to slip into the universe Rubin created. I often have trouble imagining sci-fi books in my head, but not this one! This one just felt like the world enveloped you.

Rest assured this is a super fun debut and fans of sci-fi, adventure and action should check out Dim Stars! I can’t wait to see what Brian P. Rubin publishes next!

Thank you so much to the author for sending me a copy of this book!

Book Review: The 13th Zodiac (2021)

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The 13th Zodiac: Book One (The 13th Zodiac #1) by L. Krauch

“White hair, and Eternity on her shoulder.”

This is the first book I’ve read by L. Krauch and it’s a strong start to what looks to be an awesome, fantastical series! I saw the recently released covers for the next books and they look fabulous, I must say. If this book is anything to go by, the next two will be just as steeped in mythology, world-building and heart.

GENERAL SPOILER WARNING

I’m not sure how much of this review is *actually* spoilery, but since I wanna go into some of the worldbuilding and backstory that you don’t get at the start, heads-up. 🙂

Single-shot rifles were no match for a madwoman and her axe.

For those looking for a fantasy romance, The 13th Zodiac is it. With a truly unique twist on the notions of Fate, Time and Eternity, this builds a tale that feels both familiar and fresh. I was really struck by the backstory and basis for the world, and I love the mythos employed by Krauch in the shaping of it.

Time was freed. Now, she seeks her other half so she can repair the Eternal Clock and return things to the way they were, before Urth and Sky made man.

I’ve been spending a lot of time lately thinking about worldbuilding and how different authors approach it, and I really like Krauch’s take. Especially the shattering of the Keeper of the Stars and the whole backstory of Time ripping her soul in half and creating Eternity (the 13th Zodiac).

Someone with one black and one white wing wielded the Spear of Stars. But it was not the same Fate I knew. They stood over the bloody body of Time.

The story begins with our lovely prince, one Jase Raion, reaching the island kingdom of Aria and meeting Liya, the lost princess of the kingdom. He literally runs into her, ha, and their lives quickly become entangled. And very quickly we get our OTP.

“All right, princess. It’s time to go.” He gently gathered Liya into his arms.

I MEAN— (/◕ヮ◕)/

The prince and the princess are indeed adorable, shippable characters to be sure, although many of the side characters don’t quite agree! There’s a scene towards the end that perfectly encapsulates this, although I shan’t spoil ya!

From fantasy to mythology to action/adventure to found family to romance, Krauch manages to pack an impressive amount into her debut novel and I can’t wait to see what fantastical tales this author comes up with next!

Author Interviews Roundup

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In case anyone missed any of the recent indie author interviews I’ve done, here is an updated list of all the interviews I’ve posted so far. Be sure to check these great authors out!

Author Interview: L.A. Wasielewski
Author Interview: Pedro Gabriel
Author Interview: L.L. Stephens
Author Interview: A. K. Ritchie
Author Interview: Amy Maltman
Author Interview: Luther Kross
Author Interview: Sinnamon Carnelian
Author Interview: Ciarán West
Author Interview: Mansur Hasib
Author Interview: Val Neil
Author Interview: Alan Denham
Author Interview: Barbara Avon
Author Interview: Rita A. Rubin
Author Interview: Maxime Jaz
Author Interview: Chris Clancy
Author Interview: Elford Alley
Author Interview: Dan McKeon
Author Interview: Elena Nix
Author Interview: Charlotte Sullivan Wild
Author Interview: M. W. McLeod
Author Interview: L. Krauch
Author Interview: Sarah Bell
Author Interview: D.N. Schmidt
Author Interview: Casie Aufenthie
Author Interview: Courtney Maguire
Author Interview: Diana L. Smith
Author Interview: Jamie Jackson

currently reading: check in

a picture of an open book with glasses on it; text says 'currently reading'

I read and reviewed a lot of kid’s books recently (see my review roundup!) and now I’m working my way through three wonderful books: Fear and Fury by Jamie Jackson, The 13th Zodiac by L. Krauch and The Hidden King by E.G. Radcliff. I’m really enjoying all three and I definitely recommend you check them out!

Synopses and links below 🙂

The Hidden King (The Coming of Áed #1) by E.G. RadcliffHidden truths. Hidden power. Hidden destiny.

On the shores of a rusty sea, in the streets of a starving city, a young man named Áed scraps to build a life for himself and the makeshift family he loves. Scarred by a trauma he cannot remember, and haunted by the brutal damage it left behind, he has no idea of the courage his future will demand.

When tragedy strikes, a desperate Áed risks a treacherous, life-changing journey in his last chance to save the only family he has left – but an ancient legacy smoldering within him is about to turn deadly. Neither he – nor a kingdom – will ever be the same.

The 13th Zodiac: Book One (The 13th Zodiac #1) by L. KrauchRunning from his past finally catches up to Jase Raion, an ex-member of the Ashen Guard and the Crown Prince of Chall. After settling on the island of Aria, he receives an unexpected contract: The lost princess of Aria was discovered living in the port town of Brighton, on the outskirts of the island Kingdom.

A trip to the markets in Brighton ends abruptly as Liya Fairaway stumbles into Jase. She vanishes in the busy marketplace when Jase realizes who she is, the lost princess of Aria and the bearer of the 13th Zodiac: Eternity. And his target.

Something ancient pulls them together, a bond that neither can deny. Reluctantly at first, Jase joins Liya and the other Zodiac to end the threat of Soren Raion, the King of Chall.

Time is not on their side, and Fate has other plans.

Fear and Fury (Adventures of a Villain-Leaning Humanoid #1) by Jamie JacksonMeet Megaera, Meg for short. She’s like Deadpool, except for funner.

For a girl with the power of fear the recruitment attempts from both sides are never-ending. A self-described not-a-hero, villain-leaning humanoid, Meg just wants to live her life, work her dead-end job and have everyone else (especially the heroes) leave her alone. But when a bigger fish who can turn superpowers back on their users enters the picture and threatens the person Meg loves the most (herself), she must turn to the last group of people she would admit she needs help from.

Forced to team up with the heroes she despises (but won’t murder, because let’s face it, orange is not the new black), Meg will have to face the choices from her past that she won’t get therapy for. Self-centered, snarky, sarcastic and a little bit dramatic, she’s going to have to save the world, even if that wasn’t her intention. And try not to get shot in the process. Because that shit hurts. 

Author Interview: L.A. Wasielewski

a woman reading a book beside text that says, 'author interview: indie book spotlight'

Be sure to check out The Alchemist on Amazon!

Interview:

1.      Paperback, hardback, audiobook?

Up until recently, I preferred only paperback.  There’s something so wonderful about holding it in your hands, sniffing that unique paperback smell (especially old ones!).  I couldn’t read on a kindle for a very long time because it hurt my eyes, but with the new one we purchased a couple of years ago, it doesn’t seem to bother me as much anymore.  Now I really like the ease of e-book, but I still will never pass up a paperback!

2.      Pick a genre, any genre!

Fantasy, for sure.  I grew up reading it, and naturally just fell into writing it!  Playing fantasy-based video games like Elder Scrolls and old-school RPG’s also had a lot to do with my love of fantasy as well!

3.      What is the first book you remember reading?

The Curse of the Blue Figurine by John Bellairs. I checked it out so many times from our elementary school library!

4.      What book shaped your childhood most?

I don’t know if it shaped me in any way, but I would spend hours reading my Shel Silverstein poem books.  I just remember them always making me feel safe, calm, and happy.  Very comforting, even though I had read through them all a bazillion times.

5.      When did you first start writing?

Back in the 90’s, in high school.  I was bored in a 7am economics class (Sorry, Ms. B!) and started writing a story about a video game I loved, Phantasy Star IV.  This was before I even knew fanfic was a thing!  It was terrible, but I was proud of it!  (It is socked away in my house and will NEVER see the light of day ever again.) When I got into college and realized there was a whole community that wrote stories like mine, I was hooked and pretty much never stopped writing (except for the years I had a newborn/toddler.  Those years are a blur … lol).

6.      What made you want to write? Does it still hold true?

In the beginning, with fanfic, it was to tell stories that were either never covered by the games/movies, or give the existing characters new adventures.  When I transitioned into original fiction, it was kind of the same feeling—except now the characters are mine and I’m creating EVERYTHING for them!  And it definitely still holds true, because I love building worlds, creating characters, crafting stories.

7.      What book/poem are you most proud of creating?

I have a book releasing Spring 2022 that’s a backstory novel for a character in my Alchemist Trilogy.  It’s by far my favorite thing I’ve ever written, and I can’t wait to share it with the world!

8.      Did you publish your first book or is it for your eyes only?

My first actual book?  Definitely to share with the world.  There are a lot of fanfic ideas that I’ve tinkered with over the years, however, that were only shown to a select few people, or that I just kept for myself.  

9.      How many books/collections have you published so far?

I have a completed adult epic dark fantasy trilogy, The Alchemist Trilogy, and another book ready to go for a Spring 2022 release. (It just needs a cover!)

10.   What genres do you write in (or hope to)?

Right now it’s epic fantasy, but I have a “dink around with” project that I hit on from time-to-time that’s sci-fi.  I think it’ll make a cool series someday, but that’s a long way off.

11.   Do you do research for your writing or is it all in your head?

Since I write fantasy, you’d think I don’t have to research a lot since it’s all fantasy-type stuff and I can just make everything up, but I surprised myself!  I’ve researched everything from poisons to lockpicking to swords/armor to warfare to, ummm, grisly ways to die and torture.  The list goes on and on!

12.   To plan, or not to plan your plot?

I MUST have an outline.  I plan chapter-by-chapter, sometimes scene-by-scene.  A lot of the time, dialogue comes to me first, and then I craft a scene/chapter around it.  But that doesn’t mean I’m stuck to the outline.  There are plenty of times where I’ve changed or deviated from what was originally planned, and I always leave room for changes and new ideas.  (The biggest instance like that was a character that was added *during* the writing of the 1st draft for Dark Horizon [after I had a completed outline], who ended up being a fan favorite, filled a plot hole I didn’t realize was there in the beginning, and became integral to the entire storyline.  He’s … the one getting a backstory novel in 2022!)  

13.   What route of publishing have you chosen? Do you plan to stick with it?

I originally queried my first book out to almost a hundred agents, but soon after I sent the first batch, I realized I wanted to self-publish.  So, the remainder of my query journey was half-hearted and I wasn’t really into it.  I knew that if I self-published, I’d have complete control over everything, and that was very important to me.  That’s not to say self-publishing hasn’t been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done (and I had a kid who didn’t sleep through the night until well into his sixth year!), but the reward of knowing that I did this all by myself (and with a trusted group of test readers, my wonderful husband/editor, and a fantastic cover artist), is all I could ever hope for and more.  It has been very empowering knowing that I did this on my terms.

14.   If you could live inside another author’s universe, which one would you pick? (Ex: Middle Earth, Narnia, etc.)

I’d love to live on Krynn, from the DragonLance novels.  Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman fostered my love of fantasy, and it was their books that ultimately had a hand in inspiring me to write my own fantasy books.  Krynn seems like a cool place, mean-ass dragons notwithstanding. 😉 

15.   Do you currently have a WIP?

I have a few!  Writing has taken a back seat this school year, as I’m homeschooling our child, but I try to find time when I can.  I have two Alchemist Side Projects in various stages of completion (look for them in 2023), as well as a new fantasy project starring a group of bad-assed ladies in their late-thirties/early-forties.  I’ve written six chapters of that project so far, and I’m LOVING these gals.

16.   Tell me about the character you’ve created who is dearest to your heart.

Ooof, that’s hard!  I’d have to say my main character in my Alchemist Trilogy, Ryris Bren.  He’s a lot like me in some ways: he suffers from anxiety that can be very detrimental to his life from time-to-time, and I found through writing him, I was also finding ways to deal with my own anxiety.  If Ryris was having a “bad day” on page, I knew I could help him through it because I’ve been there many times, and if I was having a bad anxiety day in real life, sometimes writing Ryris helped me work through my problem by allowing him to have some fun/be relaxed.  He’s grown so much over the course of my series, and he’s my cinnamon roll for sure.

And I’m picking a runner-up because I want to, haha!  Mercer Nox, who appears in Dark Horizon (Book 2), has wormed his way into my heart.  He’s a sassy, snarky, asshole and very much a combination of me and one of my dearest friends.  I pretty much wrote this guy just to entertain us, and it’s been so wonderful hearing how many readers just LOVE him.  

17.   What do you consider your *current* magnum opus?

Wow, that’s a tough one.  I think I’m actually going to choose the largest fanfic piece I ever wrote.  Weighing in at over 250K, it’s a Final Fantasy VIII story named Phoenix.  It took me almost four years to complete and I’m so very proud of it.  The reviews and praise I received for it still make my heart happy to this day.

18.   Do you have a favourite romance in your books? Or, if yours features no romance, tell us about your favourite character friendship!

Yes, but it’s classified for spoilery reasons.  😉 

19.   Do you listen to music as you write? Recommend a favourite writing song.

I used to need silence.  But when I was struggling with the third book in my Alchemist Trilogy, my husband suggested a few Pandora channels with moody music and it actually did the trick!  Now I usually write to E.S. Posthumus and other music of that type.  It’s especially good for fantasy battle scenes.  

20.   Do you have any character art for your books, whether by you or another artist? (Be sure to credit/link if you can!)

I do!  My dear friend Kristin (https://twitter.com/KMKWrites) did some incredible drawings!  She messaged me one day and told me she was inspired to do some fan art and I was BLOWN AWAY. She captured Ryris perfectly.  

Link to image one and description. | Link to image two and description. | Link to image three and description.

21.   If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?

You don’t have to write every day.  Sometimes we all need a break, sometimes life gets in the way, sometimes we really just don’t feel like writing.  Forcing yourself to write every day because you feel you “just have to” isn’t the answer.  I’ve taken days off, weeks, off, HELL, MONTHS off.  I haven’t written anything more than a paragraph or two in months because of family commitments and no time, but I know when I finally do get the time to sit down and really work again, I won’t see any negative effects from not writing every day.

22.   Have you entered any writer contests? Tell us about your experience!

Several years ago I entered a regional fanfiction contest.  The pieces couldn’t be more than 600 words long, which for me was TORTURE because I’m very long-winded. It was an ultimate challenge for me.  I entered two pieces: A Star Trek AOS story, and a Final Fantasy VIII story.  My Star Trek story made the top 20 out of 500 or so entries, so I was very proud of myself! I didn’t get any type of prize for my placement number, but the pride I felt was prize enough.

23.   Who are your top 5-10 favourite writers?

Trad pub: Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman.  Their fantasy novels/worlds are what drew me into the genre in the first place, and have had me consistently reading their books for 34 years now!

Self/indie pub: Mason Thomas, Dan Fitzgerald, Deck Matthews, Lilith Hope Milam, Kristin Kuffner, Rob Nugent, and Sean R. Frazier.  

24.   Link us your book/twitter/goodreads or wherever we can best connect with you!

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorBebedora

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LAWasielewski

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18538281.L_A_Wasielewski

Book Link: http://author.to/LAWasielewski

Author Interviews Roundup

I have had the pleasure of interviewing some truly insightful, lovely and talented authors recently. If you haven’t had a chance to read these interviews, I encourage you to do so and be sure to check out their books! Some hidden gems in here for sure ❤

Author Interview: Pedro Gabriel
Author Interview: L.L. Stephens
Author Interview: A. K. Ritchie
Author Interview: Amy Maltman
Author Interview: Luther Kross
Author Interview: Sinnamon Carnelian
Author Interview: Ciarán West
Author Interview: Mansur Hasib
Author Interview: Val Neil
Author Interview: Alan Denham
Author Interview: Barbara Avon
Author Interview: Rita A. Rubin
Author Interview: Maxime Jaz
Author Interview: Chris Clancy
Author Interview: Elford Alley
Author Interview: Dan McKeon
Author Interview: Elena Nix
Author Interview: Charlotte Sullivan Wild
Author Interview: M. W. McLeod
Author Interview: L. Krauch
Author Interview: Sarah Bell
Author Interview: D.N. Schmidt
Author Interview: Casie Aufenthie
Author Interview: Courtney Maguire
Author Interview: Diana L. Smith
Author Interview: Jamie Jackson