Here is my author interview with Monica Enderle Pierce for The Virtual Book Con Event featuring sci-fi and fantasy authors. We will be highlighting her book The Shadow & The Sun so make sure to grab your copy today!
What is your favorite thing about the fantasy/sci-fi genres?
I love exploring everyday emotions and relationships in the fantastical settings of fantasy and science fiction. This idea that you can create a character who lives on a starship, comes from another world, faces off with wraiths, or wields magic, yet she/he still experiences the sames loves, losses, highs, and lowes that we do in our ordinary lives.
What is your favorite fantasy/sci-fi based movie?
For fantasy, The Lord of the Rings trilogy. For science fiction, it’s a tossup between the Star Wars films and Alien. (Depends on whether or not I’m in the mood to be scared.)
How many books do you current have in the fantasy/sci-fi genres and which one would you recommend new readers starting with?
I have two fantasy novels and one sci-fi novel. Which book to begin with depends upon your preferred genre. If you want romance, then The Shadow & The Sun (fantasy romance/sword & sorcery) or Girl Under Glass (post-apocalyptic/dystopian/alien invasion with strong romantic elements) are your best bets. If you prefer something darker or rooted in history, Famine (dark fantasy/historical fantasy) is the book to pick up.
What one thing has changed about you or your writing from when you first started to now?
Ha! Just one thing? I’m more cognizant of writing for the readers than for myself. So I’m better at working tropes into my writing to give it a wider (commercial) appeal while still retaining elements that make it unique and challenge those tropes.
If you could vacation to any spot in the world with anyone where would you go and who would accompany you?
I’d take my hubby and my daughter to see Guédelon, which is a castle under construction in France. They’re employing historically accurate medieval methods of construction at the site. (http://www.guedelon.fr/) Then we’d visit Castle Chillon on the shore of Lake Geneva. (http://www.chillon.ch/en/castle)
What do you find to be the hardest thing about writing or publishing a book?
Every book seems to have unique challenges for me. My last novel (The Shadow & The Sun) was very easy to write and edit, but the print formatting was a bear. I’m working on the sequel now and finding it challenging to sort out and balance the intricacies of its plot, the characters’ evolving relationships, and the political pressures that are mounting from many sides.
Do you find that you sell more books during certain months or holidays versus other times?
If you had one redo in life what would it be and why?
I’d learn graphic design when the chance came up in college. It would make marketing my work go faster now.
What is your favorite part about being an author?
I love it when readers tell me that my characters really resonated with them. Especially if they’ve found joy or some understanding of themselves in reading my work. That’s priceless.
Do you have any specific reviews or comments that stand out that you have received over time?
I recently heard from a reader who’s a trauma therapist. She contacted me after reading Girl Under Glass. In that novel, my main character Rachel suffers from PTSD and this reader felt that my handling of her reactions rang so true that she plans to recommend the book to some of her patients. That’s a tremendous compliment and so uplifting for me because I worked really hard to get that aspect of Rachel’s experiences and personality right. She’s not always an easy character for readers because trauma colors all her actions and reactions. But she’s very real and gritty and I love her for it.