Interview with Anne B. Walsh

When did you first start writing?
I've been telling stories since I could talk, and writing them down since my parents bought me Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing (my handwriting is AWFUL). Serious efforts at novels began for me in high school. Note that I say efforts. They, too, were AWFUL and have met their deserved fate of oblivion. My greatest writing watershed moment, though, has to be October 2004, when I began my fan fiction AU known as the Dangerverse (now completed after ten years and very nearly two million words). Writing the DV, more than anything, is what taught me how to be a writer.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
There is time which is not spent writing? I love to read, enjoy cooking and eating, and sing with my church choir. I also pet my crazy dogs a lot, and my new kitties when they will deign to allow me near them.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Author was never in question. Indie... I don't like to give up control, and if that means I have to keep my day job for a while instead of peddling myself to publishers, so be it. The good stuff always gets found out sooner or later, and I write good stuff (if I do say so myself).
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest published full-length work is my novel "Killdeer", in which a young lady named Elspeth, bored to tears aboard her brother's starship, searches the computer banks for some new music and instead finds an entirely new race of people called the Aelur, who need her help. She has to successfully navigate the pitfalls between their world and hers, conquer her fears and worries, and learn how to fight for herself but also accept help when she needs it.

I've continued this story in all of my holiday collections, with "Glorious Song of Old" in "Sing We Now of Christmas" (which was actually published before "Killdeer" itself!), "Enough" in "In the Bleak Midwinter", "The Tenth Lady" in "Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day", and "Sun and Moon and Stars of Light" in "Masters in This Hall". All of these stories are now available for FREE in the unitary collection "Star of Wonder", and a fifth story, "Carol of the Bells", will become available with the publication of "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" at the end of November 2016.
How did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
My family is close-knit and loving, though of course, like any family, we can irritate each other from time to time. I try to portray this same kind of family in my writing, because I think too often in stories that involve families, the irritation gets star billing and the love gets pushed to the side. Family drama is a classic for a reason, but is drama the only thing a family has to offer? Not in my experience.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Telling a familiar story in a fresh and amazing new way. Bringing the audience with me and showing them, however imperfectly, what I see when I sit down to write. And let's not forget being able to vicariously punch in my enemies' faces and throw them off cliffs by naming stupid evil peons after them. Saves me a bundle on court fees and bail!
What do your fans mean to you?
My fans are my friends, my support base, my cheering section... in short, they are awesome, and I will do everything I can to keep them happy. (Except reprieve that one character. You KNOW the one I mean.)
Who are your favorite authors?
I love Nora Roberts for her characterization (though not for her smut scenes) and Mercedes Lackey for her settings (though not, dear heavens NOT, for her internal consistency). I'm also fond of Poul Anderson, Gordon R. Dickson, Anne McCaffrey, Brian Jacques, Ellis Peters, C.S. Lewis... and of course one could never forget Madame J.K. Rowling.
What are you working on next?
The world I'm currently writing in, Dareva, has elements of both fantasy and sci-fi, and uses my slightly... strange sense of humor to explore topics like power and powerlessness, hope and hopelessness, and what you do when you feel like you have nothing left that you can do. It's definitely inspired by some personal experiences, as well as by some recent media exposures of mine, and it's turning out to be a lot of fun to write. The first novel, "And One Shall Cry", came together quite fast early this year, but I'm still cleaning it up so it's not ready for publication yet. The second, "To Follow Dreams", is my 2016 National Novel Writing Month project.

If you want a sneak peek into Dareva, why not check out "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" when it launches on November 29? The second story, "Ding Dong! Merrily on High" features two of the main characters of "And One Shall Cry", along with introducing the setting and one of the seminal plot elements.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The fact that I like eating and staying warm better than I would staying in bed all day. (Need paycheck.) If I were a full-time writer, I might not need to get out of bed, since the power cord on my dictation headset will indeed reach that far from my computer...
Published 2016-11-04.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Star of Wonder
Price: Free! Words: 52,260. Language: English. Published: November 3, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Four previously-published Christmas stories about the starfaring, music-loving folk known as the Aelur, who overcame their intended destiny to chart their own paths, now reside in one FREE volume. "Glorious Song of Old", "Enough", "The Tenth Lady", "Sun and Moon and Stars of Light"... will you sing along as you read, or at least hum a few bars?
I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
Series: Holidays with Anne, Book 5. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 49,770. Language: English. Published: November 29, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Jingle all the way to your favorite reading nook with this fifth holiday collection from Anne B. Walsh! Join a starfaring princess in her quest for bell-ringing Christmas beauty; ding-dong-ditch your way to Winterfest happiness in the cave-bound Hidden Cities; and meet Bran the Fool, magical Lord of Misrule for twelve days of Yuletide merriment at the court of Darius, King of Coliseva...
Week in Review 2
Series: Flash Fiction Collections, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 31,130. Language: English. Published: November 24, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Throughout 2015, science fiction and fantasy author Anne B. Walsh has continued her tradition of posting flash fiction on her blog, Anne's Randomness, on Fiction Friday or Made-Up Monday. Now all those posts have been compiled into one collection. From Fairy Tale Fridays to Madcap Mondays, these tales are suitable for any day of the week. Where will you end up? Pick a page, any page...
Masters in This Hall
Series: Holidays with Anne, Book 4. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 34,360. Language: English. Published: December 1, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
(4.00)
'Tis the season for stories by the fireside; why not read them from Anne B. Walsh's fourth collection of Christmas and winter-themed tales? Find out what the Winter Princess, on a journey to save her love, has in common with Amanda Evans, child of the greater galaxy; learn with the Christmas cat that any gift can be great; and discover the tales of Anne's own Spirit of Christmas (Cookies) Past.
Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day
Series: Holidays with Anne, Book 3. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 27,900. Language: English. Published: December 9, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Dig out the fuzzy slippers, turn on the Christmas songs, and settle in with a good story as Anne B. Walsh presents her third collection of holiday fantasy and sci-fi. Hurry to the manger with Starsong, princess of Free Sky; join Khor, director of drama, and Libby, lady wizard, as they try to save their home with a Midwinter tale of hope; and find out what hats are in for snowmen this season...
Week in Review
Series: Flash Fiction Collections, Book 1. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 17,920. Language: English. Published: November 6, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
For most of 2014, author Anne B. Walsh has been making Fridays fictional on her blog, Anne's Randomness, by writing flash fiction for her fans to enjoy. Now all those Fiction Friday posts are rolled together into one collection, featuring stories suitable for every day of the week: Fairy Tale Fridays, Thunder Thursdays, Worldview Wednesdays, Trycanta Tuesdays, and Madcap Mondays!
In the Bleak Midwinter
Series: Holidays with Anne, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 29,270. Language: English. Published: November 28, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
(5.00)
Anne B. Walsh presents five tales inspired by Christina Rossetti's classic poem, perfect for reading by the light of your Yuletide fire. Journey from the world of Trycanta, where a family celebrates the winter solstice; to the starship called the "Wild Rover", where gifts tell stories about life and living; to 18th-century England, where a young man must speak his lady's true name to win her...
Killdeer
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 87,010. Language: English. Published: November 28, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » General
(4.00)
She was looking for music. She found a mystery... Elspeth Kolesar only meant to search for new songs to relieve her boredom. What she finds instead are video recordings of a race called the Aelur, kidnapped from their home by her corrupt brother Anton. Though she is as much within his power as the Aelur, Elspeth vows to help them. Will the clash between her worlds destroy her?
Cat Tales
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 66,310. Language: English. Published: May 12, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Cat lovers rejoice! This collection of speculative shorts from the pen of Anne B. Walsh has something for all science fiction or fantasy readers who've ever suspected their cuddlesome companions of conspiracy...
Homecoming
Series: Tales of Anosir, Book 1. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 118,250. Language: English. Published: January 28, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » General
(4.00)
For this Cinderella, midnight is only the beginning... Is a life of luxury always preferable to one of hard work? What if one comes with loneliness and the other with love? Avani of Shroca, once a servant girl, now a lady in a land of magic, must answer these questions for herself, if she is ever to earn her happy ending and win herself a true Homecoming.
Sing We Now of Christmas
Series: Holidays with Anne, Book 1. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 25,870. Language: English. Published: December 7, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
(3.67)
Celebrate the holiday spirit with three very different, but very musical, short stories from author Anne B. Walsh: historical fantasy "Laeti Triumphantes", from her Chronicles of Glenscar series; science fiction "Glorious Song of Old"; and traditional fantasy "The Angel and the Rose".
A Widow in Waiting
Series: The Chronicles of Glenscar, Book 1. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 181,360. Language: English. Published: June 11, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Historical
(4.67)
Who killed Alfred de Maine, Lord Farnton? His pretty widow Eleanor knows the truth, but she also knows the value of a secret. Will patience, love, and Eleanor's magic of moving win her the man of her dreams? Or is she doomed to live and die a Widow in Waiting?