“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” Mark Twain
Today’s image and quote certainly inspire a writer’s imagination and reforces that no matter our surroundings we can always ‘escape’ into world’s of our own making. Inspiration can come from anywhere or anything and we need to remain open to the world around us.
Inspiration is, of course, subjective. Each of us could witness a scene and write completely different views on it. A book my writing group published confirms this fact. Writing Prompt Journey is compiled of prompts and the varied responses to them. It is intriguing to read another person’s slant on the prompt given.
You will feel the excitement radiating from Andi O’Connor in this interview. She has her first novel launching in March 2013 – congratulations! A fantasy author her story is sure to intrigue her readers. To accompany Andi I thought today’s word was apt – Mirth – definition: gaiety accompanied by laughter. I’m sure it reflects how Andi is feeling.
Of the characters you have created or envisioned, which is your favorite & why?
Wow, tough question! I would have to say that my favorite character is Jae from my short story, The Mé’Draak’s Redemption, which you can read on my blog: abookaffair.wordpress.com. I was able to get inside his mind on a deeply raw and personal level. The situation he is in puts him in an extremely vulnerable state, both mentally and physically, yet there is still an air of tenacity about him. Despite the unjust actions against him and the deplorable situation he is in, he still has compassion for others and a willingness to put the lives of others before his own. I actually find him to be quite inspirational.
Do you favor one type of genre or do you dabble in more than one?
I definitely favor fantasy, specifically epic/high, but I do experiment with different subgenres. My short story, The Mé’Draak’s Redemption, is on the darker side of things. It was a new style for me, but it turned out well and actually ended up being one of my favorites. You never know how something will turn out unless you try!
What do you enjoy most about writing?
I am able to lose myself in the characters and worlds I create. There are times when I look up from my notebook while in the middle of writing a scene and find myself taken aback that I am not in the fictional world. Knowing that my readers may experience the same thing is truly an awesome feeling.
Have you got a favorite place to write?
In my office with the door closed, surrounded by books, and with a few candles lit.
Do you plan your stories, or are you a seat of the pants style writer?
I definitely write by the seat of my pants! I generally have a basic idea of what I want to have happen. And when I say basic, I mean basic! I give myself a starting point, and let the characters direct me where they want to go. There have been many times when my husband has asked how something will end or what comes next, and I have absolutely no idea! A frequent exchange between the two of us is when he says, “I can’t wait to see what happens!” And my reply is, “Me too!”
What inspires your stories?
I know this sounds cliché (please don’t hit me with a stick!) but EVERYTHING! I have always been content to sit back and quietly observe what is happening around me, soaking up everything like a sponge. I am continually amazed at how many things have inspired me and influenced my writing. People, places, world events, controversial issues, conversations, dreams, pets. The list is endless.
I have a few habits, but I wouldn’t necessarily consider them odd. Annoying perhaps. But not odd. 😉
Do you have any pets?
Do you belong to a writing group? If so which one?
I belong to the online writing group, Fantasy Writers
What age did you start writing stories/poems?
I began my first novel while at college at the age of twenty as a fun side project, and it gradually developed from there. I have to say that when I began, I never imagined I would ever be published!
Do you have a book published? If so what is it called & where can readers purchase it?
My debut novel, The Lost Heir, is scheduled for release in March 2013!
If you could meet one favorite author who would it be and why?
If I could wave a magic wand and put myself in a room overflowing with good food, drinks, comfortable furniture, and the company of only one of my favorite authors, I would have to choose Mark Twain. I have been a huge fan of his writing for many years and love his witticisms and sense of humor and how he translated both in his writing. I wouldn’t bombard him with questions of his career, writing style, or life. Instead, I would simply want to have a relaxed evening filled with friendly conversation and banter. I have visions of myself crying and snorting from laughter. It will obviously never happen. But a girl can dream.
If you could live anywhere in the world – where would it be?
Ireland. I have been there twice and both times found myself experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms and planning my next trip while in the plane on the way home.
What’s your favorite movie of all time?
The Lord of the Rings film trilogy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Check out my blog at abookaffair.wordpress.com or follow me on Facebook at facebook.com/oconnor.andi
Do you have plans or ideas for your next book?
I am currently working on another fantasy novel titled Silevethiel and have begun work on the sequel to The Lost Heir. Once both of those are completed, I plan to expand my short story, The Mé’Draak’s Redemption into a novel.
Who is your best supporter/mentor/encourager?
My husband, who without which, I most certainly would have given up long ago. I truly would not have made it this far without his infinite supply of support, encouragement, and love.
My thanks to Andi and I wish her all the best for her debut novel.