Recently I was lucky enough to be interviewed by two amazing book bloggers, whose questions had me so excited to answer 🙂 Here is ONE of TWO by the amazing Dayla F.M…book blogger, reader extraordinaire, and aspiring author.
- Can you pinpoint the moment you knew you wanted to be an author? What advice can you give other young writers about following the author’s path?
When I look back on it I realize I’d always loved writing or making stories. I made colourful little novels out of construction paper and crayons, and I had some of the best games of “pretend” a kid could have. I also lied a lot but don’t do that one…
I’m pretty sure I knew for a fact I wanted to be a writer shortly after reading Cornelia Funke’s book, Inkheart. There was something about the story, and the way it was a book about books, that awoke something in me that has yet to go back to sleep. It was just a little while after that book that I wrote my first legitimate novel. Albeit I was twelve but I think it counts. That’s probably when the passion really started.
As for advice? I guess I’d just say never stop imagining. Or reading. I’ve always found the two seem to coincide…
- Can you tell us what your writing process is like and how you handle the stress of writing?
I waste a lot of time. Friends and family will say that’s a lie, but I really do. And then I write in bursts. Long, long bursts that usually leave me exhausted and in pain (tendonitis is unpleasant. Make sure you stretch!). When I’m feeling particularly stressed about something I’m working on, I take a break to explore other works. I’ll watch a movie in a similar vein as my project, or read a book that falls in the same genre or theme. I find that helps me solve dilemmas or find inspiration to get back to it, and sometimes you really just have to blink and step back.
- The Light in the Dark is a super promising fantasy series. What are some of the themes in fantasy that you loved exploring in your novel?
I love fantasy in general, but high fantasy like this was a new road for me. I love using fantasy to explore real world issues, though, so I had a lot of fun working with that in The Light in the Dark. Racism, colonialism, war, sexism, abuse…I find it fascinating to explore themes we deal with in reality through the fantastic, and I’m pretty sure most fantasy novels do this too.
But also I’m a huge folklore nut. I’ve always loved Faeries ever since I was young, so getting to incorporate them into my work was endlessly fun. I got to craft them the way I wanted them to be, the way I always imagined they would be like, but I also did a lot of research for them as well. And magic. Boy do I like magic and ancient powers and the good and the bad, the light and the dark 😉
- Who were some of your writing influences and will we see anything that reminds us of them in your future books?
Because this was high fantasy, some of my favourite authors don’t necessarily apply here, but I’ll list some faves regardless. Cornelia Funke, Sarah J Maas, Rainbow Rowell, Leigh Bardrugo, Maggie Steifvater, Becky Albertalli, and wow so many more…
As to whether you’ll see anything that reminds you of them in my work? I mean probably? As they are influences, I’m sure there will be some aspects that might seem related. Maas, for example, is probably the closest you could examine for The Light in the Dark, but that’s just fantasy I suppose. You could even argue Tolkein was an influence. To both of us.
- In a world where traditional publishing is becoming harder to achieve, can you tell us the merits of self-publishing and why it’s such a great route for future writers?
I’d argue that it’s not harder to achieve as much as it just takes a lot of work. I’ve read some professionally published works that were pretty bad, but then I’ve read some self published works that were incredible, so I really have no idea how it works. I think it’s a very selective market, and it’s hard to sell yourself and your work, but self publishing is becoming a great way to start yourself off. A foothold or calling card that might even be better than a query letter. AND it’s beneficial for getting an idea of what putting your work out there is like. It can get you recognition and be something under your belt that agents and publishers can look at when considering signing you.
But also it makes you a published author. Whether it’s an ebook, a small stack of printed copies, or some big self publishing package, you are an author the moment someone reads your work and likes it. Would it be nice to see The Light in the Dark in a Chapters or Barnes & Noble? Absolutely. But seeing it on iBooks, Kobo, and Kindle doesn’t make me any less of a writer.
Find more from Dayla, like reviews and blog posts and great book pics, on her social medias:
And definitely check out her trophy collection on Goodreads 😉 www.goodreads.com/daylafm