One of my blogging friends Krystal Wade has just had her first book released. Wilde’s Fire is the first book in the Darkness Falls series was released on Monday March 12th.
She let me bombard her with questions. So without further ado – I give you:
-Wilde’s Fire was published on Monday March 12 2012. How do you feel about being a published author?
The last seven or eight days—who’s counting?—have been a whirlwind. Part of me wants to hide from the world now that my book is out there. What if people don’t like it? What if they make fun of me? You can tell I was ridiculed as a child, no?
In all seriousness, being published feels great, but a realization dawned on me: what little time I had to write before is all gone now. So if you ever visit my house, you’ll see my laptop is attached to me. If I’m cooking dinner, I’m with the laptop answer interview questions. If I’m sitting outside with the kids, I’ve got the laptop fired up for when a story idea hits me. A writer’s life is busy.
-How long did it take from first draft to polished draft before you started submitting Wild’s Fire?
First draft took six weeks. Revisions took three months. I submitted to a publisher in late May 2011, but kept reworking the story (in case they rejected me). Well, they didn’t respond, even after I sent inquiries, so after my tenth rewrite, I subbed to Noble Young Adult in August. So I guess the entire process took about eight months.
-Was there any specific inspiration which led to the creation of the Wilde’s Fire world?
I’ve shared this with many people. All I had was an image of a young girl reaching out to touch something shimmering. She was in a dense, lush green forest. That was all I had.
-What was the hardest part about writing these novels?
Time. Being a mom of three and working so far from home, I have had to give up a lot of things to make time for writing. Sleep and TV are the most prominent…and makeup. I’d rather sleep in than paint my face.
-Who is your favourite character?
Flanna. She’s a fiery redhead who doesn’t care what anyone thinks about her. She’s not afraid to speak her mind, and if you lie or fudge the truth, she’ll be the first to call you out. Publicly!
-What would you compare Wilde’s Fire to?
Oh. Wow. Tough question. I didn’t compare WF to anything when I pitched it. Not one single thing. I didn’t write Wilde’s Fire to be like anything else, and I’m certainly too modest to ever compare myself to some of the amazing writing talent out there.
What sort of method did you use to develop the Wilde’s Fire magical system?
There is no method to my madness. *muahahahaha*
How did you go about creating the lore for the book?
I researched a lot of Old Norse mythology. While my gods and goddesses are not anything you’ll find in Old Norse, their structures and fundamental ideals came from that system.
Do you have any favourite snippets of the book? And if so, would you like to share?
Honestly, the prologue might be one of my favorites. I wrote this well after I’d finished the book, and I felt so evil and sinister when doing so. (I swear I’m not as mean as I seem.)
I’m standing in the middle of a meadow, surrounded by tall wheat grasses. Dotted along the hillside are thousands of purple and yellow wildflowers. Bending down to pick one, I catch sight of him. Tall, strong, with looks piercing straight through me.
Stepping away from the dark shadows of the forest, he crosses into the meadow, then stops in front of me.
“Katriona.” He utters my name as if there’s no other name in the world he’d rather speak.
He reaches out to hug me, the way he has so many times before. His work-worn hands warm my skin with their touch. He leans in, closes his eyes—
The sun disappears. The sky turns black. Emerging from the forest, gray beasts with hollow eyes surround and watch us. Before Arland can turn and fight, a mangled creature rushes forward, then stabs him through the heart with a long, dagger-like claw.
My screams fill the darkness.
I love your trailer – did you have creative license over the stills used in it? Was it a fun part of the promotion process?
The trailer was quite a wild ride. I was in talks with two production companies to do it for me. We were going to film three teens swimming, then pitch blackness and a lot of screaming. But when my publisher released my schedule, neither company was able to work with me.
So, I made it myself. This involved combing through the Free Music Archives database, browsing the internet for pictures I thought would be neat, then realizing nothing out there really fit my world or my monsters. My friend Michelle Johnson, an amazing artist (Alex & Me Design- https://www.facebook.com/pages/Alex-me-design/190567480986754) listened to me ramble on for hours about what my little creatures looked like, and she made all but three slides for the trailer. The first two photos were released to me by photographers I found via Flickr, and the last image (of the fire) I bought the rights to through a stock photo site.
It was definitely fun, but by the end of the process, I said I never wanted to watch that trailer again!
Now, I know there’s at least a second book in the works, Wilde’s Army – how many books long do you anticipate the series being?
Wilde’s Army is with the publisher and Wilde’s Meadow is over 50% complete. It will be the last in the Darkness Falls series. I’ve come up with a couple spin off character ideas, but don’t know if I’ll ever write them. There’s this other story I’m DYING to write. 😉
Is there anything else you’d like to let prospective authors know about the process?
Don’t stop writing. When someone marks your work up in red, listen, don’t get mad. When you feel like you aren’t any good, read a few books, write some more, drink a margarita, then stop comparing yourself.
Just like everything else in life, keep working hard!
Thank you 🙂
Moral of the story – never give up. How’s that for some #WriteMotivation?!
And isn’t that a GORGEOUS cover?