In this week’s author spotlight its my pleasure to introduce author, Amanda M. Lyons!
1) Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m an author/editor from rural Ohio, I have a fiance who’s also a writer named Todd Misura and we have two great kids ages 8 and 19 months. I edit for J Ellington Ashton Press who is also the publisher of Wendy Won’t Go.
2) Where can we find you on the internet?
Website (where you can also find my blog): http://amandamlyons.weebly.com/
3) Why did you choose the genre you write in and how would you describe your writing style?
I didn’t really choose it in a lot of ways. I’ve always been the kid who was scared of everything, well not everything, of course, but of quite a bit. If it was risky or something unknown it scared me, things like big changes and death still do. Part of it’s my imagination it’s always been a bit too big for its own good and it sends my mind in logic circles. I have to have an escape plan for all of the big risks and changes, ways I can save whatever it is I’m afraid of losing.
I write character driven, literary horror for the most part but it’s also got edges of other genres like fantasy or fairy tales mixed in, little bits that make things just a little more interesting. My central focus is making you see what’s going on and getting you to respond to that in some way.
4) Tell us about your latest book.
My newest release is Wendy Won’t Go, a novelette about a family dealing with grief and a terrible ghost for several years. It’s a short piece but it’s very effective, there are nuances to the tone and some real surprises in the end. Billy is a single dad trying to raise his daughter Sara while coping with both the loss of his wife and the monstrous ghost that comes and attacks them on many levels, especially emotionally and physically. It’s as much about the dynamic between a parent and child dealing with the loss of a loved one as it is a ghost story. There’s real power in it and it’s as moving as it is chilling.
5) If you could live in any world from a book or movie which would it be and why?
Hmm I’m not sure I would. There are so many really great worlds in both fiction and film but when we’re reading about them they’re all in conflict aren’t they? There’s beauty there and adventure but would you rather be able to say you were safe and stable or live in a world where everything could be over at any minute? I suppose I would say Tolkien’s Middleearth only after all of the conflict is over and the world is back to being calm. I’m sort of a hobbit in real life anyway.
6) What was your favorite book growing up?
Even then I had way too many to pick any one book out. I had a rough start on reading but once it took off I was devouring books by the stack. It was not uncommon for me to pick out at least 60 books to bring home from the library. Some of my favorites: Grimms Fairy Tales, Beatrix Potter, Hatchett by Gary Paulson, The Indian in the Cupboard series, Romona, Mouse and the Motorcycle, Edgar Allan Poe, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, those orange and black monster movie books and just about any “true” ghost story or paranormal book I could get my hands on.
7) The infamous question- what advice would you give to any aspiring and new authors out there?
Read, Write, find readers that will be honest with you on what needs work, listen to them and make it better. Also never stop trying even if it takes years.
8) What are your preferred methods to use while writing and environment?
I write wherever I can get a hold of a pen and paper but I do most of my writing on my computer.
9)What are your favorite games (tabletop and/or video)? If you’re not too much into gaming (even monopoly counts!) what are your other hobbies?
I love puzzle games and Japanese RPGs. I also really miss the survival horror games, there are less and less of them from what I’m seeing. I used to be into AD&D, Vampire: The Masquerade and All Flesh Must Be Eaten (a zombie tabletop) but I always did have a terrible time finding other players for those.
10) What can we look forward from you in the future?
I’ve got quite a bit in the pipeline. I’m currently finishing up my work with 5 other authors on a collaborative novel called Feral Hearts, it’s been a great experience! I’m also working with my brother on a short horror collection called Apocrypha and expecting a re-release of my vampire novel Eyes Like Blue Fire (it’s in edits right now). I have a bunch of other works in progress as well: an Apocalypse novel about an author who writes the end and then tries to save her world, A novel about a girl with killer dolls, the sequel to ELBF called Cool Green Waters, a fantasy tale about a boy who follows his mother into another world, and a novel about a farm where the livestock and crops begin to change.
Thanks for taking the time Amanda for answering my questions!