I didn't discover my love of reading until I was 24.  I was working full-time and struggling to get through college when I discovered an urban fantasy series featuring vampires, werewolves, and a mouthy U.S. Marshall who could raise zombies.  I was hooked.  I devoured ten books over the course of a few months, and my family was ready to disown me.

One year later, I found myself on a fan fiction site posting new chapters daily.  At first, it was an escape from some hard times in my life.  But over the next year, I wrote half a million words, and it became clear this writing thing was more than a passing flirtation.

Real Story

I wish I could say I lived in a stone cottage in the heart of a misty wood, but here's my

It seems like every author's story begins when they were six years old and just knew they would be a novelist.  But life is messy, and the path is not always so clear before us.  Whether you're eight or seventy eight, when you find something that lights you up, grab on with both hands and don't let go.

it's never too late to discover your passion.

Lesson 1:

Over the next three years, I wrote my first two books, joined writing organizations, worked with a fabulous critique group, entered contests, and queried dozens of agents.  Anyone who has gone the traditional route will tell you querying is the long dark night of the soul for writers.  It takes rock-solid confidence and a lot of grit.  I like to think I have enough of both, but sometimes life shakes you around, and you have to put your dreams on the back burner while you weather the storm.  So, that's what I did.  I emerged a changed woman five years later, with newfound freedom, a new love, and a belief in my power to create the life I envisioned.  The publishing landscape had changed drastically while I was on hiatus, and I made the decision to get off the query-go-round and indie publish.

We can spend way too much of our lives chasing the brass ring that we've been told we should want, even if our heart is not really in it.  Manifesting your dream life starts with a clear vision.  The sooner you get in touch with your truest desires, the happier you will be.

Resilience is being willing to revise your plan.

Lesson 2:

Self-publishing has been quite an adventure!  I get to wear so many hats–from writer to editor to web designer to social media manager.  It wouldn't be everyone's cup of tea, but I love it.  I love having complete creative control, being able to make business decisions that fit my life, and collaborating with other independent creators.  I've never followed a conventional path, whether it was my studies, my life choices, or my spirituality.  My books don't fit conventions either, and being an indie author allows me to tell my stories my way.  Stories about young women discovering their path in the world, harnessing their magic, and finding the kind of love that only exists in fairy tales.  Just like I did. 

You can never be everyone's cup of tea, but there's a special someone or even a whole group of weirdos out there just for you.  Find them.  And if you ever face a choice between being true to yourself and going along with the crowd, remember that you have a unique gift to offer the world.

Always be the Unicorn.

Lesson 3:

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Welcome, Darling!

I hate this question because how can you pick just one?  I'll be a rebel and list the three  trilogies that give me all the feels and inspire me to write better books: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, Winternight by Katherine Arden, and Kushiel by Jacqueline Carey.

What is your all-time favorite book?

It's a tie between writing the last third and revising, and I know that makes me weird.  I love the downhill part of the book, when you know where you're going and you're sort of just along for the ride.  But in revisions I get to do a lot more embellishment with description and jazz up the dialogue, which is really fun.

What is your favorite stage of the writing process?

What is your least favorite stage of writing?

The middle is always the hardest.  I still love it, because it's like a puzzle or trying to weave an intricate pattern, but it definitely gives me the most headaches.

Do you have any other series ideas outside of the Zyne world?

I do!  I'm very excited to get back to a vampire steampunk story that I began writing over ten years ago.  It will be super action-packed, which goes back to my roots, but it will also have a quasi-historical aspect, which is a new challenge for me.

Do you ever experience writer's block?

I think you can have different reasons your creative energy is blocked, but they are easy to address.  Otherwise, it's just a matter of priorities.  I take a long time to write because I have months where I don't write at all, and that's okay–that's just what my process looks like.  Everyone's is different.

Which character of yours do you most relate to?

I think there's a bit of the author in every character.  I try to base characters somewhat off of people I've known or observed, but whenever you're filling in the blanks, it's coming from you.  That said, the character I'm most like these days is Astrid Edgewood–no B.S., and I'm nice until you give me a reason not to be, then look out!

What is your OTP?

Aside from my own characters, of course.  Jamie and Claire from the Outlander series are my absolute favorite.  Their relationship is goals.

Do you have any other hidden talents?

I love to paint and design, especially interior decorating and digital photo-manipulations.  I'm a pretty good cook, a fair singer, have a degree in Biology, and I'm quite gifted with animals.  I would be a veterinarian, except I decided my heart couldn't take it.

What kind of witchcraft do you practice?

I was raised in a Celtic (Welsh) tradition, but I don't follow any prescribed path.  I call myself an intuitive witch, because I design rituals in the moment.  I'm an empath and clairaudient, and I have a strong affinity with nature, earth, fire, the moon, and the cosmos. 

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