I am starting my SPFBO 9 Author Interview Series!
Just as a little intro to the interview series at large since this is my first one —
Goodness gracious, I had over 90 applications. I am prioritizing my own batch and then moving on in order of first come first serve for the rest. I hope I get to everyone but I really don’t know if I can fit nearly 100 interviews in. I tend to do deep dives into people’s profiles, their author blogs, websites, Goodreads pages and scavenge anything public for personalized questions. So, if you’ve signed up for this, please don’t be creeped out if I’m like, HEY we follow the same author/band/entertainment whatever. I’ll always ask for permission to share any pictures I may pull from publicly listed social media sites.
Anyway, here we go! Starting off with C. Borden!!! Her entry was Echoes of Dragons
How did you hear of SPFBO? Have you entered before?
A friend of mine entered his book in a previous blog-off. At the time, I was in the middle of writing Echoes of Dragons, but he insisted I should enter it the next time. I missed last years, so I was determined to try this year.
Have you read any past finalists or contestants from this year? Any favorites/shout outs?
I have read a few past contestants, and a couple of this year’s contestants. I had a hard time choosing between E.L. Haines’s and Anat Eliraz’s books when they were contestants for SPFBO7. They are both very good, for very different reasons. This year? Running against my own book? My favorite reads so far are Night’s Reign and Daughter of the Beast. Both are immersive and really inspire me to improve my own storytelling.
I went through your twitter and you post a fair amount about Christian novels or maybe Christian fantasy, any favorites?
I enjoy a good Christian fiction novel, but am not that familiar with Christian fantasy beyond The Chronicles of Narnia, which I do love. Within the Christian genres, I tend to enjoy more of the thrillers and science fiction: Frank Peretti’s This Present Darkness and The Oath and C.S. Lewis’s Out of the Silent Planet.
If you could import any fantasy creature from your novels to real life which would it be?
This is a tough one because I created some new species, races, and creatures for the world of Mythnium. Among them all, though, I think I would like to import either the Imperial Dragons, which are most like the dragons familiar to the fantasy genre, or the rana, a humanoid fish-people who are really a beautiful species.
What do you think dragon taste like?
LOL Hmmm… They probably taste like chicken, and when prepared correctly are crunchy and go good with ketchup.
What did you do in the Air Force/AFSC?
In the Air Force, I was a Medical Technician (4N071). I had the opportunity to work on an oncology ward, which was the absolute hardest yet most rewarding experience as I got to witness the power of the human body and spirit when faced with impossible odds.
What led you to writing?
I have always loved to write as an avenue of expressing myself because I am not a quick-witted speaker. Over time, I discovered that writing also offered me an outlet for my very visual and active imagination. In middle school, I began writing what is now considered fan-fiction – creating sequels to other books I had enjoyed, or changing storylines for shows and movies that I thought could have been better if… Somewhere between high school and college, I began to imagine what it would be like to be an author, but didn’t really start chasing this dream until 2009.
There are some folks who describe their characters taking control of the story, do you resonate with this, or not?
I absolutely understand this phenomena. I am a pantster, so I only very loosely outline any project I am working on. This allows, or maybe encourages, the characters in my head to really take on lives of their own. In many cases, these characters have altered the rough outline I had going on in my head. So far, they have not caused me much grief, but, well, there is always that one waiting in the wings ready to cause mischief.
Are you a structured writer in that every day you have a set time or amount you write, or is it ebb and flow all or nothing? Something in between?
I am a bit of both. I have better structure, schedule, blocks, and goals in the winter months when I am cooped up inside. But when the weather begins to warm, gardening, hiking, and exploring demand my attention, so I tend to write in the gaps.
Where would you tell people to visit if they found themselves near your neck of the woods? Could be anything, restaurant, park, entertainment venue etc.
Well, if someone happens to be in Northwest Montana, then they must first visit Glacier National Park. It is a bucket list kind of place! Then if they are already that far northwest, they should drive on over to this tiny little town called Libby, get breakfast at the Venture Inn, hike the swinging bridge over Kootenai Falls, have lunch at the Spur in the next town, Troy, and then circle down to Ross Creek Cedars and Bull Lake, and then have dinner near the lake at the Halfway House. Yeah, I am kinda in love with the area I live.
To keep this question short about favorite authors, lol, which two authors do you read frequently/are your favorites?
This is really hard to pin down to just two – Of main stream fantasy authors, I am a R.A. Salvatore addict, especially anything to do with Drizzt. The other would be Terry Brooks and his vast Shannara world, which I can read over and over again. But of the Indie authors, I am a fan of E.L. Haines and S.L. Barrie. I mean, there are SO many incredible Indie authors I follow and love to read, but I own everything Haines and Barrie have put out, and look forward to rereading them often.
What are some of your favorite tropes in fantasy/scifi? Something you never get tired of or really look for when you’re looking for your next read?
Above all, the epic and never-ending battle between good and evil, even when the lines are blurred in a myriad shades of gray. And if the lines between good and evil, much like in reality, are really muddled, I enjoy the journey even more. Another I really enjoy is the adventures of unlikely companions who are forced to set aside differences and find common cause to complete the quest or reach their destination.
Do you have any pets? If yes, do you want to share pictures?
I do have pets! I have two adopted cats, brothers, Simba and Sunny. Both are just over a year old now, and are the most affectionate and silly cats I have ever owned. I also have a Blue Pitbull, who we call Odin. He is ten years old now, going white on his muzzle. Silly doggo loves everyone he meets, to include the wildlife that frequent our property throughout the year.
Whatcha’ do in your spare time, what hobbies do you enjoy?
Writing is my main hobby, but I also garden, can, craft, and dabble in nature photography. I am not very good at any of these secondary hobbies. I learn as I go, but I enjoy them, because they are wonderful distractions when I am stuck on a writing project.
I see you follow re-knittery, something about taking old sweaters and making them into hats/beanies – do you crochet or knit?
Oh! Reknittery is a really neat project a friend here has been doing for a while now. I love her creations. However, while I do very basic crocheting, I am not at all good at it. It’s one of the secondary hobbies I keep practicing at because my Grandmother and her sisters all did it, and I really just want to keep their memories in action. Every time I try to make a blanket or a scarf, it is with their faces in my mind and their words of wisdom in my ears.
Thanks for taking the time to be here and best of luck!!
Thank you for the opportunity to share a little bit about myself.