I never truly explored being a writer until I was studying for the bar exam. It was at first a means to escape the pressure of the exam but it became so much more for me. It was shortly after that time that the idea of “the Want Series” came to me. And it’s taken me five years to get to this point. But I believe that I had to go through the love/hate relationship I had with this book to make me realize that writing truly is my passion. Also I promise the next one will NOT take 5 years to do.
Why did you choose the genre of YA Fantasy for your first book?
I love fantasy in general – it’s the only genre that you are not tied to any particular scenario. Anything can happen. And it’s having endless possibilities that makes the genre so endearing to me. Originally this story was going to be an adult Paranormal story but my main character Katya didn’t feel right being 25. She seemed much younger. And since the majority of the books I enjoy are YA, it was only fitting to make this book Ya as well.
Where did the inspiration for the storyline in Awoke come from? For the characters you included?
It was a random night with friends when the inspiration came out of nowhere. It came from a simple question. “What if the Grim Reaper was human?” And I became a woman possessed fleshing out the idea that very night. As for the characters, they came to me as I fleshed out the plot line. But Katya was the original character I knew I wanted to have. A black female starring in a fantasy book which is truly rare.
How does the writing process work for you - write when inspired, scheduled time? Was there any research needed?
I have to schedule writing. So many things are distractions at home like my husband or my dog. I have tell everyone from such and such a time I am unavailable. It usually works. There was some research involved such as some of the names have Latin origins, Gregor’s Scottish past and the Seven Original sins.
As an author - what do you enjoy most about writing process? What come the hardest?
I love it when people tell me they get sucked into my story. That fulfills me beyond words. That my words and imagination allowed you to get lost for a couple of hours into the world I created. And because so many great authors did that for me, it’s amazing when I can be considered amongst them. The hardest part is the editing. The first draft I finished in three months. The editing, aka ripping it to shreds and perfecting, took the majority of the 5 year cycle.
I believe this was written to be the first in a series? How many books do you envision? Have you begun book 2?
Yes this is a three book series. I haven’t started book 2 but I will do shortly after the new year.
What do you most want reader to know about you and the books you write?
I write these books as though I am the reader myself. What would I enjoy reading about? Which is why there is action, romance, plot twists and turns. I hope that by putting myself as a model reader that I will be able to capture your attention as well.
What do you do to relax and refresh when not writing?
I am a sucker for Korean dramas and hanging out with my husband and friends. Oh I can’t forget my pup too!
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