Interview with Amanda Wakefield

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I do, and ten years later it became my first published novel. "Caught in the Storm", a twisted supernatural tale of how one broken family is able to put their literal skeletons to rest.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Yes. My first story as a child was Alice in Wonderland. While all of the other kids my age were falling in love with the characters and the fantasy of it all, I was reveling in the realism behind the metaphors. I never could just "be a kid". :)
How do you approach cover design?
I create my own covers as well as covers for other authors. My stories often come from things I have literally visualized, so I find it easier to create what I see, rather than explain it to someone else. I already know how vivid my own imagination is, so I utilize it.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Oh, man...I love to read so this is a hard question! Though I am an avid reader of horror fiction and absolutely love anything written by the three greats: Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and Richard Laymon. I also have a guilty pleasure read, which is Nicholas Sparks, every now and then.
Describe your desk
A cluttered mess. I am very disorganized, but work best under immense pressure. In college, all of my papers were written the night before they were due...and I made the Dean's List with a 3.85 average. :)
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Smithfield, Va. for the most part. I was bounced around quite a bit in the foster care system. This had a huge influence on my writing, as I was gifted the chance to meet some really interesting individuals and live in some even more interesting parts of the country. Where you go and who you meet, often lead to what you write about and the characters you create. A writer feeds on this.
When did you first start writing?
I was 12 years old when I was first introduced to writing stories. I was 7 years old when I first started telling them. :)
What's the story behind your latest book?
Right now I am writing a collection of horror shorts based in part on death. Five years ago I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease, and became pretty ill. I was hospitalized for awhile and all I could think about was how I wasn't afraid to die if it came down to it. So many people in my life thought this was strange, so I set out to try to scare myself into being afraid of death. I'll let you know if it works. ;)
What do your fans mean to you?
My fans are what keep me writing. It's easy to think of a story and put it on paper, but the greatest joy in being a writer, is sharing the experience of a story with someone else.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Creating digital art, it's my therapy before writing. I create visions of new worlds, and characters and from these images I am often inspired to tell their tales. If you ever wonder where one of my stories came from, you have only to visit my site and it will be clear.
Published 2016-05-02.
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