Today I am excited to feature an interview with author Tara K. Young.
About the Author
1. What or who inspired you to start writing?
As a kid, I loved the way stories made me feel whether they were dispensed through books, movies, or video games. Then I got into the work of Christopher Pike as a teenager. The Last Vampire series and Road to Nowhere had a huge impact on my teenage mind and I began writing my own novels. They were pretty awful at first and most of them went unfinished but they fed my developing addiction to adventure stories.
2. Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?
My next project (working title: Courted Sanctuary) will be released this fall. It’s a historical fantasy that takes place in 13th century Europe. It follows Luitgard and Sieglinde, the High Priestesses of an isolated tribe hiding in Germany. When Justin, a Dominican friar, shows up despite the protections that should have kept him away, it naturally creates a bit of chaos. As Justin and Luitgard come to realize they are both being manipulated, they embark on dangerous a journey to Rome for answers. They discover that they have a shared history that brought them together while Sieglinde learns that her home is not nearly as well protected as she had thought. I had the idea for this story around ten years ago, even before I started Gods’ Masks. I mulled over it for a long time to get it just right and I have to say that I’m rather pleased with the outcome. I can’t wait to read it again and I wrote it!
3. What is the best and worst advice you ever received? (regarding writing or publishing)
Just get the words out and don’t think about them. Worrying about grammar or what other people will think on a first draft makes the writing stifled and bland. Grammar and worrying about an audience can come in editing later.
4. What is the best thing about being a writer? The worst?
The best thing is being able to get all these ideas out of my head and share them with people. I love letting my imagination loose. The worst feeling comes from publishing. Publishing isn’t just sharing; it’s business. I dislike having to sell myself along with the books. It goes with the territory but it does not come naturally to me. I have to work at it much more than I do the actual writing.
5. How do you conceive your plot ideas?
I have very vivid and weird dreams. I grew up thinking everyone does but it’s actually quite rare. The novella The Monstrous Hunt is from a dream in which a man told me the story of the woman he loved. I took it, tweaked it, and altered the ending from how it ended in the dream.
6. Do you outline your books or just start writing?
A little bit of both. Often, I will write a page or two based on single aspect from a dream. Trying to figure out what the story is about from that, I start outlining. I usually write a pretty loose outline at first and then polish it and rearrange it as I write more.My outlines are often boring before I start writing and my writing tends to be stifled when I stick too closely to the original outlines. My current process is messy but it seems to work.
7. What book are you reading right now?
Soul Bonds by E.M. Sinclair. I’m only halfway but so far it is quite good. It follows a slave girl who finds herself in the lair of hatchling dragons and becomes bonded to one of them.
About her Book
1. Please tell us about your current release.
Gods’ Masks is the first book of The Moirean Tapestry series. It is an introduction to the main characters who will appear throughout the rest of the series. You can read more about it on my website and download the epub for free there.
2. What inspired you to write this book?
I’m trained as an archaeologist but studied world cultures for years even before that. I began to muse about how to fit them to the archaeology. I rearranged them and mashed unrelated ones together. While considering that all myths might have a grain of truth, I also wondered what the real story would be if all those myths were wrong. The mixture I came up with led to the invention of the Thinkers in Gods’ Masks.
3. Which of your characters is your favorite? Do you dislike any of them?
At the moment, it’s Lapidus. He has turned into an explorer which makes him more interesting. I plan to spend most of 2013 working on the fourth book of the series which will be entirely devoted to him. It will be the first of the books that does not follow several main characters at once.
4. If this book is part of a series, what is the next book? Any details you can share?
Book 4 will be based on the Siberian archaeology I have done. I haven’t decided exactly when the story will take place but possibly around six thousand years ago. It will begin with Lapidus coming across one of the hunter-gatherer cultures there. He will begin to recall the past and learn how to overcome the goddess that has been hunting him. There will also be the return of a character that was lost in the second book, The Whispering War.
When an ancient prophecy resurfaces and is misinterpreted, Altruvia, the heiress to a utopian society of a race of godlike beings, is ripped from her home. Along with her twin brother, they discover that the political intrigues of their time have roots in events dating back possibly as far as the creation of our own universe.
Tara K.Young has written two short stories, one novella, and three full length novels. Almost all of her work includes archaeological references because she has spent the last decade as a computing archaeologist. She has assisted in the excavation or research of Neolithic and Bronze Age hunter-gatherers in Siberia, early farmers in Japan, vikings in England, and First Nations and fur traders in Canada. She currently resides in Alberta, Canada with her husband, daughter, and cats.
You can check out all of her books on her website.