Thursday 11 August 2016

Q & A with A.M. Rycroft

The Taming 
Cathell Series #2
by A.M. Rycroft

Imps, ale, and intrigue… This dark fantasy tale follows the brash Thystle Moran, sword for hire. Only one job has ever bothered her, one that promised to be easy money, but ended in the death of her friend. Now, an imp with questionable motives says her friend's death was no accident. Thystle seeks retribution as her world spirals out of control. She faces off against her dark past, a betrayal, feelings for a young woman, and the interests of a shadowy group known only as the Immortals. Can Thystle complete her quest for vengeance before someone ends her first? 

Paperback, 122 pages
Published June 14th 2016 by Mighty Quill Books

Find the Cathell Series on Goodreads
Buy it from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

                                                                                                                              Read It & Reap: February 9, 2017

A.M. Rycroft is a dark fantasy and horror author. She lives in Pittsburgh, PA, and holds a B.A. in English from the University of Pittsburgh.

She has been writing since a young age, and though she attended art school for a time, she found her way back to writing again after art school. Her first dark fantasy/horror novel Into the Darkness was written while she attended the University of Pittsburgh. Her writing has been compared to the works of David Eddings and Stephen King.

When she is not writing, Rycroft is a writing coach and a periodic cartoonist. She enjoys keeping fit with weight training and walks through her local parks. During the summer, A.M. is frequently seen riding the roller coasters at the Kennywood amusement park.

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Q & A with A.M. Rycroft

Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
Thystle Moran is the main character in The Taming. She is a sword for hire and a vampyre, but not the Twilight or Interview with the Vampire type. The fact that she is a vampyre is more tangential to her character rather than a full definition of who she is as a person. Thystle doesn't like to over-analyze her life. Her past has its dark points, which she'd rather forget about and face each day as new. The events of The Taming kind of shake that philosophy, however.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
I have designed the covers for my last two books myself. I learned a lot about graphic design while I attended art school, prior to dropping out and moving in the direction of writing instead. It's a bit of a long process for me. I look for an inspiration for the cover and then try to bring that idea to life, while also tying one cover into the next in some way, since the two books I've published so far exist within the same series. I can't say whether I will continue to design all covers myself, but most people seem to like my work, so I think being able to do them myself has worked out alright.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
My home office. It's comfortable and quiet for the most part. Everything is arranged how I like it, and the feng shui of my writing space has to be just right. I've never been one who could sit down in a coffee shop or other public place and be able to write. I'm too prone to people-watching, so having other people around is too much of a distraction for me. And I'm usually writing very late at night, so most coffee shops are closed then.

What is the best advice you have been given?
I feel like I trot this story out to much, and I know someday soon, Joe Hill is going to come find me and tell me to stop telling people this story already, but his advice was the best ever given to me. I met him during a book signing at a small event in Massachusetts last year, and it wasn't long after the release of my first book. I was feeling really down, because the book wasn't receiving as much reader attention as I'd hoped. I asked him what he recommended for an author in my position. He thought about it a minute and then told me to just keep writing, because it's what I love to do, and eventually, the recognition will come. Writing is a long game, he said, and finding success with it takes patience. It was great advice and made me feel a lot better. Now, almost a year later and a second book on the shelves, and I'm actually starting to see a change in the recognition I'm getting. So, Joe Hill was totally right.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A police officer or a fireman or a fighter pilot or maybe a mobster. Of course, I didn't really know what that last one meant.

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
I know it's really disappointing to all those indie authors out there who only put ebooks out as a way to save money, but I don't buy ebooks. I will read a short piece in ebook form for a friend, if they ask for help with something, but that's as far as ebooks and I go. I just can't get into a book that isn't on paper in my hands. I feel like I just can't focus on the words right when I'm looking at an ebook. But I also understand the importance of ebooks for some people as a way to transport multiple books at once without having a stack of paper books, so I offer my books in ebook format too. I'm just not a fan of reading that way.

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
It took me a long time to figure this one out. I don't like flying, so the ability to fly was out. I feel like the ability to walk through walls is an invitation for trouble, like I'd get stuck someplace, so that's out too. I finally settled on super speed. I was always the slowest runner in my class as a kid, and I continue to be the world's slowest jogger when I'm at the track. I've come to terms with that in adulthood, but if I could be the fastest, even for a short period of time, I think that would be great.

What book are you reading now?
I'm juggling a ton of writing projects right now, so I don't have a lot of time for reading, however, I recently started reading the Sandman series by Neil Gaiman. I got a couple volumes of the graphic novel as gifts, so I'm working my way through those.

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