Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story that really impacted me was Ida B. by Katherine Hannigan. As a kid, it really touched my imagination side.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing at age 13, on fanfiction.net, writing Percy Jackson fanfiction. Then I grew into the Marvel fandom, and now I'm here writing my own stories.
What are your favorite five books, and why?
Hands down all of the Percy Jackson books by Rick Riordan. I grew up with him. My sister had Harry Potter, I had Percy Jackson. He was my go to happy place. Percy Jackson is really what got me into writing. I can still remember the embarrassing fanfictions I used to write. Not that fanfiction is embarrassing in-and-of itself, just the stories I wrote were horrendous. Without Percy Jackson, I wouldn't be a writer. So it's one of my favorite book series.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in California 'til I was seven, then New Hampshire 'til I was 12, and then I moved to South Carolina. I've lived in many diverse and non-diverse places. I truly believe that it does influence my writing because it helped me become aware about my privilege in certain areas, and my disprivilege in others. It made me more aware about other people than just myself and other's like me. I don't think my books would be as diverse as they are without growing up in the places I did.
What's the story behind your latest book?
It's really a self-reflect on me and my own life and dealing with the fact that I'm asexual aromantic agender. How I felt completely broken because I literally felt like I was nothing. So it come from a very personal place that I hope people like me can connect to.
How do you approach cover design?
I think about the character arc that my main character has, and try to reflect that onto the cover. Or an important event that happens in the book or a important setting. I always thought that a cover that goes with the story content helps people be more drawn to it. Especially if it's a mysterious cover.
Describe your desk
Glass and metal. A metal desk lamp in the cover where the desk meets wall. Movie posters hung all around it. Pencils and pens in my metal cup. Notebooks on the drawer meant for a desktop keyboard. A picture of my cat Tomy as a kitten in a cat frame.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I snuggle my cat, with a cup of chocolate milk, and I read Marvel fanfiction. Or I binge watch the new season of my favorite Netflix Original series.
What do you read for pleasure?
I reread the Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus series. It's nice to go back to my roots that lead me to writing. It's nice to spot something that inspired one of my character's arcs. It's truly amazing to see.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The next story. What's gonna happen today that I can use as character development or some hilarious backstory. If I don't get out of bed, I might miss something.
What do your fans mean to you?
They mean a lot. They inspire me to write more. They show that I am reaching people. And that's all I ever wanted my stories to do.
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