Today is my blog spot with the Empyreal Fate tour hosted by AToMR Blog Tour. :) I was lucky enough to have Rachel Hunter, the author of Empyreal Fate to sit down and do an interview with. Let's begin shall we?
About you as an author:
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I breathe words, so I truly think the aspiration lies in my genes. Ever since I was but a child, I’ve wanted to write. It began with reading. My father read to me often, and the fascination with winding vibrant tales thus began. In fact, I started writing before I could even spell my own name! Curious, is it not? But I remember – quite vividly – when I would sit down (stand… I don’t like sitting), and I would think of a story I wanted to write, and then I would ask my parents how to spell each and every word. It was painstaking – let me tell you - but that’s where it all began. I would say I wanted to write since the womb, but, in truth, childhood hits the mark.
Where do you get your ideas or inspiration for your characters?
They speak to me, honestly. I hear their whispers against my ear – as if the wind were telling me secrets. But they are no secrets; they are my characters - begging to be written, telling me things that I must jot down or remember for the next time I write. It is the Muse speaking, and the Muse is not the same from day to day. Yet, like with all things, it must be maintained – preferably with a healthy dose of reading, game playing, and music listening. Such activities are the essence of ultimate creativity.
How do you decide what you want to write about?
Again, the Muse flows through me as it will; I cannot always know the way it will influence me any given day. Some days, I am inspired to write the fantastical; others, a gritty mechanical world. Yet, in all things, I tend to have a penchant for poetry; ‘I dance with words,’ as some may say. And as a poet, I have incorporated my fascination of speech within Empyreal Fate, thereby bringing to light the lofty language and mystical tongue of an epic world. Every sentence I wrote flowed through my head along with a beat, and I recounted my tale accordingly. Thus, I wish to share with all the beauty of words and the unique way in which they breathe. This is style I adore, and this is the style I hope to instill upon the reader. The specifics of what I write about are ever-changing.
About you as a person:
What books have most influenced your life?
All books have influenced me in a way – whether for good or for ill. Most particularly, speculative fiction works have inspired me the most, including fantasy and science fiction novels. Tolkien’s elves, as portrayed with a regal, majestic air, have always captured my fancy. The Lord of the Rings is an epic classic that will forever win my heart.
What is the first book you remember reading by yourself?
Oh, goodness! Nostalgia is my curse. But, if I must reveal such, I do recall quite clearly how proud I was to read PJ Funny Bunny well before kindergarten. A close second was The Little Engine that Could. These are classics for me to look back on, and I cherish every memory, every turn of the page.
What are you reading right now?
Currently, I am reading “I Will Fear No Evil”, by Robert Heinlein. Fascinating fellow, he. Intriguing work.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
Well, when I’m not studying or plotting my next attempt at world domination, I’m searching for various ways to expressive myself or connect with the divine. I find that nature is a great place to tune in to the Muse, so I take advantage of opportunities to bike, kayak, walk, or scale the occasional mountain. I also like to learn, so I often research the most random of subjects. But typically, one can find me reading, writing, painting, attempting to draw, whipping out the next role-playing game, doing yoga, or constructing an obnoxiously large puzzle. (I’ve recently completed and hung up an 8,000-piece puzzle of Raphael’s The School of Athens). I also want to try my hand at glass blowing, but from what I hear, great caution must be made in the endeavour.
What do you think makes a good story?
Vivid words and breathing characters. Regardless the genre and regardless the message, if these crucial elements are for lack, the tale will hardly hold together. Fantasy-speaking, I do well enjoy political references and spiritual subtleties. In fact, when I wrote Empyreal Fate, I sewed in some ties of my own spiritual quandaries. I would definitely say that having read other works throughout my life has inspired me to intertwine such concepts. The most important part I gleaned was how – despite the message or whether I truly believed it– the influence or ‘readability’ of the characters was key. In fact, I believe The Shannara Series – by Terry Brooks – was the first truly epic fantasy collection I read, and I was immediately intrigued by the character dynamics. Without that connection, the inner workings of the novels would not have been as profound.
Who would you consider your favorite author and why?
I don’t have a favorite, but as I mentioned above, JRR Tolkien inspired me with his epic prose. How one man contained so vast a world within his head will ever astound me.
What book, if any, do you read over and over again?
Rather than reread books over and over, I try to branch out and read as much of as many different works as I can. Mostly, I explore the speculative fiction genre, though I do enjoy dabbling a bit in almost anything.