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

5 thoughts on “Author Interview: Amy Campbell

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