Leah Chiasson: Interview of an Author
I had the chance to meet Leah on Facebook and was intrigued by her novel Marked For The Hunt a Fantasy Fiction novel about a young woman named Diana Warren that is a Faoladh, or werewolf. Her vision magic that runs through the Faoladh is unique and a fun twist on werewolf culture.
Leah is a writer who loves music, writing, and creating interesting worlds for her readers to enjoy.
I hope you enjoy this interview with Leah, and check out her novels in the links listed below.
And as ever, May Magical Adventures Find You!
Q1. How would you describe your writing journey so far to readers?
My writing journey has spanned most of my life. It began with the beginnings of stories written on loose sheets of paper and indefinite characters in my high school years. In 2012, I wrote the first draft of Marked For The Hunt as a Nanowrimo challenge. Now, I'm working on the first YA book of a series that I'd like to have traditionally published. I've come a long way from those barely defined stories and cookie cutter characters. It was a road of practice and self taught lessons. The key, unfortunately, to keep writing.
Q2. What can you tell us about your present project?
As we speak I am working on Marked book two, putting together a series of novellas set in the same world (the first 'Bound By Blood: Evangeline O'Dair' released on May 13!), and my YA project. I wrote Marked 2 years ago and I am just now realizing how much work it needs, but I'm hopeful that it will become much better than the first as I grow as an author. Don't tell anyone, but I haven't actually looked at it in a while!
I have been amazingly inspired to work on this YA project. Whether it be a windfall of luck with my muse or the drive to become as popular as Sarah Maas, I don't know. The premise for this story starts with a question: What if the stars were alive? I've created a whole new system of magic and mythology for the world that we know while weaving in intrigue, action, and romance surrounding a magic school and celestial beings.
Q3. Which character have you enjoyed writing about the most? For what reasons?
This is really hard to answer. Honestly, I can't choose one. I sometimes joke that I have voices in my head. The characters that I currently write have been with me so long that they feel like fully formed people trapped inside of me. Diana, the protagonist of Marked For The Hunt, came from issues that I once had with anger. She has since developed into quite the voice, trying to circumvent her anger issues to do the right thing when her friends and family need her while still grumbling from time to time. Same with Evangeline, the protagonist of my new novella Bound By Blood. I think she came to me before Diana, actually. She wasn't formed from any source of trouble, but has recently helped me to overcome trouble. Her character has dealt with a lot and tries to look toward the bright side of things, to be the better person. Both qualities I really need in my life.
The newest protagonist, the one in my YA, isn't quite as loudly spoken as Diana or Evangeline. She's young, in comparison, but full of adventurous life that I can't wait to see fully fleshed out.
Q4. Who is your ideal reader?
The ideal reader is hard to define. There is hardly a gender or age range that can be classified as an ideal reader as people love to enjoy all kinds of written works. Perhaps it is better to say that my ideal reader is someone who needs a bit of courage. I like to show women who should be afraid in the face of their nightmares, yet rise to the occasion. If Diana can look at the face of her father's murderer and stand tall, then I hope to inspire my reader to find that kind of courage within themselves.
Q5. If you had the opportunity to invite four people of your choice to dinner who would you chose and why?
As I am a bit of an internet stalker when it comes to authors, I'll probably choose all authors. I would love to invite Maggie Stiefvater, author of the Raven Boys series, but I feel like she might not like me. I can't tell you why. It's just a feeling. My next invite would be Leigh Bardugo. She is a great inspiration to me and I would love to see what she would wear. Her witchy fashions are right up my alley.
Next, I would invite Patricia Briggs. She was a huge inspiration for Marked For The Hunt. I absolutely love how real she makes her world and her characters feel. I'd love to pick her brain on what she did to create that feeling.
The last person might be my biggest fan and friend, Kayla from Epicfied.com. She was the first to read Marked For The Hunt and has been my biggest supported from the beginning. Right now we are both working on YA books and I'm urging her to keep working so that we can go on a book tour together someday. I wouldn't want to leave her out of this magnificent dinner for five.
Q6. What piece of advice would you give someone who has just started tentatively gathering ideas for their first novel?
Don't let the bastards get you down.
This was something we just dealt with in my house. An idea may not seem fresh or even wanted by those around you or those with the loudest voices, but this isn't for those people. It is for you. Let that story inside of you grow and evolve into the story that you need to tell. No one else can tell the story that you are telling.
The best thing that you can do is decide what makes this story different from what is already there. That is what will attract agents, editors, and readers when you decide to make it public.
Thank you for checking out the interview!
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About Leah Chiasson:
Leah is a twenty something geek, wife, writer, and all around goofy girl. She is a freelance writer as well as the author of Marked For The Hunt, available on Amazon.com, and the coming sequel, Marked as Prey.
You can find her on Leahcorrinewrites.wordpress.com and on her Patreon site!
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Hi, I'm Yvonne Carder.