Author: Ava Jae
Pub. Date: November 14, 2017
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
The world ruler is dead, technology foundational to their society destroyed, and Safara is on the brink of collapse. Half-human, half-alien Eros is the rightful heir to the world throne, but before he can return to the capital, he's abducted by a rebel group of humans who call themselves The Remnant--and won't release him until he swears to help them overthrow the very government he's inheriting. With Eros missing, ex-queen Kora is determined to stave off mad grabs for the throne. But as royalty from across the territories flock to the capital, and a new charismatic candidate takes the spotlight, Kora sets off into the desert with a skilled prince-turned-bounty hunter to find Eros before it's too late for both the future king and his kingdom.
Today we welcome Ava for an interview!
1. Did you always know you wanted to be a writer or did you want to be something else?
There was a time when I wanted to be a doctor until I realized I was squeamish and that wasn’t maybe the best combination. But since I was thirteen I’ve wanted to be an author.
2. How long does it take you to write a book from start to finish?
That very much depends on the book and what else I have going on in my life. If I can actually focus on it without life stuff getting in the way, then I can get a first draft down in 3-6 weeks. Revisions usually take a few months on that flexible schedule too. So if the stars align, maybe 4-5 months before it goes to my agent.
3. How do you come up with themes for your stories?
I don’t. Those develop naturally while I’m writing—it’s not something I usually put a ton of conscious effort into.
4. Do you have a schedule of when you write?
If “whenever I can manage to squeeze it in” is a schedule then yes.
5. How are you able to balance other aspects of your life with your writing?
Ha ha ha ha ha what is this balance you speak of?
In a more serious answer, balance is something I’ve been struggling with lately because I’ve had so many other commitments swallowing up my writing time. Hopefully I’ll be able to fix that soon.
6. What elements do you think make a great story line?
Characters that stick with you long after you’ve closed the book and a plot that matters deeply to the characters.
7. What was the hardest thing about writing a book?
Every book presents different challenges. For Into the Black, my biggest challenge was balancing Eros and Kora’s stories.
8. How many books have you written so far? Do you have a favorite?
I have written seventeen manuscripts, as of right now and I’ve got two more planned. Into the Black is honestly one of my favorites, though there are a lot of things I love about The Rising Gold (book three!) too. J
9. Do you have a favorite character?
Yes! He’s a new character in Into the Black, actually: Deimos. I think you guise will understand why once you meet him, but the short version is he’s been a joy to write.
10. Where do you write?
Generally, at my desk, where I find it easiest to focus. I just recently got a very comfy new desk chair that I am in love with and makes the whole sitting at a desk experience much more comfortable, so that’s nice. But as long as I have my laptop and noise-cancelling headphones I can, in theory, write anywhere.
11. When deciding on how to publish, what directed you to the route you took?
I knew I wanted both the support systems in place with traditional publishing through an agent and editor and a publishing team, and I also wanted the distribution power traditional publishing gets you, because it was important to me to be able to see my books at bricks-and-mortar bookstores. I also wanted to focus on the writing aspect of the writing a book without having to worry so much about designing the book and distributing it. So traditional publishing was definitely the right choice for me.
12. Have you gotten feedback from family about your book(s)? What do they think?
I mean, I don’t ask, but those who have volunteered the information have said they liked Beyond the Red. None of my family members have read Into the Black yet.
13. What kinds of things do you like to do outside of writing?
I haven’t had time to play in ages but I am a fan of my PS4 and Xbox. I particularly like Assassins Creed and the last Final Fantasy was amaaaazing.
Also I like movies and TV shows a lot.
14. What kinds of advice would you give to someone who wants to start writing?
Don’t put a time limit on yourself. When I first started writing I set a goal of being published as a teen—but I didn’t take into account how much time I’d need to really hone my craft and how much time publishing takes in general. So much of getting published is out of your hands, and I had to learn the important thing is to really give yourself the time and space you need to improve your skills as a writer.
15. What is your favorite book? Favorite author? Do you have an author that inspired/inspires you to write?
I have too many favorites to name so I’ll just name my most recent favorite: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee.
As for the author who has inspired me, Beth Revis was a huge inspiration to me during the long years of writing books and getting rejected. Knowing that her debut, Across the Universe, was her eleventh novel really helped me keep going through the rejections and disappointments (Beyond the Red was my tenth). Furthermore, Across the Universe is the book that taught me a) I like YA Sci-Fi b) I like first person and c) I like dual POV stories. So I really think Beyond the Red would not have happened—at least, not the same way—if I hadn’t read Across the Universe all those years ago.
16. Do you have any go to people when writing a book that help you with your story lines as well as editing, beta reading and such?
I tend to isolate myself while first drafting, so not really in that stage. But I have a great team of critique partners I turn to a lot for all of my revisions but also the anxieties in between and bouncing ideas off each other, etc. They’re wonderful. J
17. Are you working on anything now?
Yes! I’m revising book 3, The Rising Gold now. And after I finish that I’ll be revising a completely unrelated project. Then writing something new. J
18. Tell us 5 things that make you smile.
Warm, furry animals; tea; snow; holiday decorations; books.
19. Tell us 5 things that make you sad.
Our current president; bigots; temperatures above 75 degrees Fahrenheit; socks that keep sliding down; realizing after you cut into an avocado that it wasn’t ripe enough to eat yet.
20. If you could travel anywhere in the world to visit a place so you could use it as a background for a book, where would it be?
The Yucatán Peninsula, in Mexico. J
Ava Jae is a writer, an Assistant Editor at Entangled Publishing, and is represented by Louise Fury of The Bent Agency. Her YA Sci-Fi debut, , is releasing March 2016 from Sky Pony Press. When she’s not writing about kissing, superpowers, explosions, and aliens, you can find her with her nose buried in a book, nerding out over the latest X-Men news, or hanging out on her , , , , , , or .
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