Hailey Edwards to the blog.
Hailey, your blog banner says 'author of winged fantasy' which begs the question, why did you choose to write in this genre and classify it as winged fantasy?
The “winged fantasy” bit started out as a joke among my friends when they noticed each book I’d written up to that point had a winged hero. But the more I thought about it, the more I decided yeah, I do write winged fantasy. I currently have three series, and two of those have winged heroes throughout the series. The third, well, that’s a surprise.
Your new book A Hint of Frost is the first in the series you are calling Araneae Nation. Tell us in your own words what this book about and why did you feel compelled to write it.
Frost is a marriage of convenience story set against the backdrop of an almost medieval world populated by Araneaeans, people with spiderlike traits. They have fangs, some are venomous, and most spin silk. There are mercenaries, herbologists, and spirit walkers. Riding bears and lizards are how the locals get around, and, word to the wise, avoid the Mimetidae clan at all costs.
I wrote Frost because the characters—the world—they were so vivid. I couldn’t walk away from them.
Who are authors you read and why? Who would you say influenced you to become a writer yourself?
I read Kresley Cole for her humor and sizzling romance. I read Gena Showalter’s Lords of the Underworld for the same reasons. I love Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files for his dry sense of humor and—I’m seeing a pattern here.
The author who has most influenced my writing is Karen Moning. It’s not a comparison of my work to hers, but more that I loved her books so much they inspired me to sit down and write my own.
Tell us a little about your writing environment. Do you write in a specific room of your house that you've set aside for that purpose? Do you write freehand or on a computer? How do you lay out the structure of your book so you keep characters and their motivations straight in your head?
Yes. I have an office, and I can only work in there. Everything I need is right there, and I like having my work separate from the rest of the house (and my family).
I don’t freehand anything other than sticky notes. I usually go through a stack per book making notes as I write to remember what I need to tweak come editing time.
Since I’m a pantser, I don’t plot. I go into each book with a general idea of what needs to happen and I let my characters get me there.
Here's an odd question but I am often delighted with the response it gets. Does a character of yours ever surprise you? Meaning, do you follow a set plan of action for your story or does the character take wing (pardon the pun) and you find yourself writing a scene or dialog you hadn't planned that suddenly takes your thinking in a different direction?
Yes! Being a pantser means you never know what’s going to come out of your character’s mouth until they say it. Sometimes you’re left staring at the page, thinking “what just happened”. I have stopped books pages away from being completed because a character said or did something that made me see them differently. I thought it was in their best interest to rewrite the book with that information in mind than to force them into a story that didn’t fit.
Do you have specific people in mind when you create your characters? Meaning, does it help you to imagine a character as a real person you may know or have seen?
No. I’m not a very visual person in terms of characters and their appearances. I “see” them as their voice and the sum of their actions.
How many books are planned for Araneae Nation series? I know that you are working on the second which you have shared excerpts in Six Sentence Sunday.
I actually submitted the second novel in the series at the first of April. It’s Vaughn’s book. As for the rest of the series, only time and the characters will tell how many books there will be.
Thanks for stopping by Hailey.
Hailey has kindly offered to giveaway to one commenter their choice from her backlist titles (any digital format).