I've always loved science fiction ever since I was a kid. I loved diving into the universes of Star Wars, Star Trek, and Dr. Who, and so many others. I always had a thought that if I were to ever write a story, I would want it to be in this genre. But I thought, at the time, that I could never come up with an original idea. Well, though my first books were not science fiction, realizing my dream of being a writer created a ton of ideas in my head. And hence, The Wielders series was born.
2.) Who is your favorite character in the book?
Oh, Jeez, that is such a tough question, as I love all the characters (even the bad guys!). If I had to select one, it would probably be Vaxi. She wasn't even a primary character when I first started Pawns, but she sure turned into one by the end. She is a huntress, great at her job despite her young age, and well loved by her tribemates, but is treated horribly by the one person who should love her the most. She strives to improve in order to please her domineering grandmother, even risking her own life to do so. Through the course of the book and the series, she grows tremendously. She truly comes into her own in Book Two.
3.) Which came first, the title or the novel?
4.) What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
Probably Chapter One, my very first "space battle". Well, it's not so much a battle as an escape, but there's a lot of cool action. I want to grab the reader right from the start!
5.) Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
To be myself. You can't make a name for yourself by copying someone else's style. Others can inspire you, but you have to find your own voice.
6.) What do you like most about the cover of the book?
Everything. I love stories with empowered women as the heroine (or villain, or both). Molly Phipps really captured that. It's the most badass thing that's ever had my name on it.
7.) What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2017?
Does my own count? I released Queens, the sequel to Pawns, on September 22nd, three years to the day after writing Chapter One of my first book, Joshua's Island.
8.) What was your favorite book in 2016?
Action Figures: Secret Origins by Michael Bailey. I love superhero fiction, and this is the best I've ever read. I bought and devoured each of the five books that came after it in very short order.
9.) What’s up next for you?
Now that Book Two is out, I have to get moving on Book Three: Endgame. I hope to have that out in early 2018.
10.) Is there anything that you would like to add?
YABC rocks! (Too cheesy?)
11.) Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
Since my stories are told in rotating POVs, it's closer to say that the characters do the narrating. Probably the most difficult was the one where my two heroines kiss for the first time. It was a spontaneous act on both their parts, but I wanted it to set the stage for their future relationship.
12.) Which character gave you the most trouble when writing your latest book?
Elzaria, one of the villains. Her twin brother, Elzor, was far easier - he's just ruthless and determined, not to mention a tad megalomaniacal. But Elzaria has a ton of power at her fingertips, making her far more powerful than Elzor, yet she defers to him. I had to build a convincing backstory to explain the dynamic between them.
13.) Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
They're both awesome. And they both suck. If you're an author, you'll understand.
14.) What would you say is your superpower?
My ability to catch typos. (This applies far more to other peoples' works than my own. Go figure.)
15.) Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
Young Adult Author Rendezvous, the best collection of YA authors anywhere. I can't even describe how the people in this group have changed me, as a person and as a writer.