Interview with Autumn Nikki Cain

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I am currently growing up in the Poconos, Pennsylvania. I often write about forests and the winter time, two very prominent parts of this area.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing when I was about six. My very first story was about a vegetarian lion, and why he decided on that lifestyle. I started writing more seriously around age twelve, and writing is a now a core part of my everyday routine.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I have never been all that good at speaking my mind. I know a dictionary and a half full of complicated and beautiful words, but when it comes to simply speaking my mind in plain old English, I falter. The greatest joy of writing to me is being able to freely speak my mind in the way that comes most natural: through my words on paper.
What are you working on next?
I'm currently working on a collection of predominantly short stories, and a few slam poems that I have read at The Living Room, a nearby platform for local artists to share their work. I've also been intermittently working on a novel about angels and sin.
Who are your favorite writers?
I like a lot of classic authors, My all time favourite writer is Edgar Allan Poe. He has been a huge inspiration to me. I also enjoy David Mitchell, Dan Drown, Dean Koontz, Joyce Carol Oates, and William Faulkner.
Why do you get out of bed each day?
Well, the coffee maker is in the kitchen.
I also get out of bed because of my menagerie of activities, my energetic pit bull, Harpsichord, and the unfinished novel I probably fell asleep on top of.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I enjoy a wide variety of activities at school such as Mock Trial, Play, Odyssey of the Mind, and editing my school's literary magazine. Outside of school I like to kayak, hike, run, read, play guitar and save Hyrule from time to time (also known as playing any of The Legend of Zelda games).
What is your writing process?
This is a tricky question to answer. I usually start out with an idea that has been festering in the back of my mind all day, get home, and start writing the great hooks I'd been thinking up all day, have a strong page or two, then proceed to have a small scale mental breakdown, I then I happily continue writing my story as if I'd known it all along.
What are your three favorite books and why?
1. The Cloud Atlas (David Mitchel)- This book was so masterfully crafted, so versatile in capturing countless points of view, and over all demonstrating a deep understanding of the butterfly effect, and how we are all connected as humans
2. The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe (obviously)- We all know who he is, but reading each and every one of his works really gives you a complete understanding of who this man was
3. Slaughterhouse Five (Kurt Vonnegut)- We all have a little Billy Pilgrim inside of all of us.
Describe your desk
My desk is stained from coffee cup marks, a record player takes up a big portion of it, there is a candle holder with a nearly burned out tapper candle, it is littered by countless papers, and a wine glass full of water sits in the top left corner of it.
Why do you write such dark pieces?
A lot of people write about finding beauty in the dark. I like to write about how the dark things in life are beautiful by their nature.
Published 2015-02-09.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.