A little about Talia and her writing career so far:
I began writing in elementary school. I honestly don't know why. It was just something I did, liked, and kept on doing. I loved reading and there were many authors I looked up to, Lurlene McDaniel, VC Andrews were a couple. In high school, I had a wonderful English teacher who encouraged me to continue writing along with a creative writing teacher who always enjoyed reading my stories no matter how "dark" they were. As an adult, it has been a few of my friends and my husband who have inspired me and helped me. After my friends read some of my books and actually enjoyed them, I was thrilled and started sending in queries. I only got rejections back and that's when my husband suggested I try publishing them as eBooks.
Everything you need to know about Talia's novels:
Can you tell us a little about Damaged: Natalie's Story?
Damaged: Natalie's Story is about a girl who falls in love with the wrong boy. After the newness of the relationship wears off, she finds out he's jealous and violent, but by that time she's already in love with him. It takes a devastating event to open her eyes and realize it's too late. In the hospital, doctors tell her she'll never be the same, and she has a lot of problems trying to move on with her life. Damaged: Natalie's Story touches many different issues including teen violence and alcoholism.
Teagan's Story: Her Battle With Epilepsy is yet another powerful story, can you tell us a little about it?
Teagan has epilepsy and after her parents die in an accident, she moves in with her newly married brother. Because of her epilepsy, her parents had homeschooled her, but now she must attend public school for the first time. It's a book about changes, friendship, and falling in love. Teagan just wants to be normal. She wants to have friends and a boyfriend, but it's hard for people to understand her epilepsy. Her doctor wants to do surgery, but as in any surgery, there are great risks. Teagan must make the decision on how to handle her medical condition.
Both Teagan's Story: Her Battle With Epilepsy and Damaged: Natalie's Story are hard hitting stories, that deal with real life situations. Where did you get the idea for theses stories?
I believe they are both important topics. They are things that need to be talked about and teens need to learn about. Sometimes I think people don't want to acknowledge that teens go through bad things like abuse. They don't want to know. But, it happens and I hope that Damaged helps anybody out there in a violent relationship to get help. Teagan has epilepsy, a disorder that not many people know about. I wanted to bring epilepsy into the spotlight so maybe people wouldn’t be afraid of it. It goes into what people should do – or not do – if they see someone having a seizure.
Can you tell me a little about your novel, If I Die Young?
Caelyn is a normal 16-year-old girl and things are finally going her way. She has loving parents, a best friend, and the boy she has had a crush on finally noticed her. Then, she collapses in school one day and she finds out her heart is failing and she must have a heart transplant. Caelyn struggles with her fear of dying and worries about having someone else's heart.
Again If I Die Young is a powerful story, where did you get the idea for this story?
My family has a history of heart defects and problems. I, myself, had heart surgery as a child and my daughter had heart surgery as well. I have experienced it first hand. I began writing this story many years ago, but got stuck in the middle. In the meantime, one of my cousins died from complications of his heart condition. This gave me the extra push to finish the story. About 2 months after I released my book, my uncle got a heart and liver transplant. This was probably the easiest and hardest book for me to write.
After writing Damaged: Natalie's Story, Teagan's Story: Her Battle With Epilepsy and If I Die Young. Your next novel went a totally different way. The Ultimate Sacrifice has more of more if a fantasy/paranormal feel to it. Can you tell me a little about The Ultimate Sacrifice?
My husband is my biggest supporter. After releasing three real life dramas, he suggested I try writing a paranormal since they are so 'hot' right now. It took a while and then thoughts began creeping into my head. The Ultimate Sacrifice was born. I consider The Ultimate Sacrifice to be a YA drama with a paranormal touch. It's about friendship, love, and what you would give up for your loved ones. The characters in this series have supernatural gifts that play an important part in saving the world.
Is The Ulimate Sacrifice a series? And if so when can we expect the next in the series?
Yes, it is. Book 2 is titled Roots and Wings. I'm currently working on it and hope to have it released before the end of the year
Your lastest novel, Secret Bloodline again takes us down a paranormal/fantasy route. Can you tell us a little about it?
Secret Bloodline is my take on vampires. It's about a girl whose world gets turned upside down when she finds out she's a vampire. She thought she had been abandoned as a child only to find out her parents had died trying to protect her. Hearing this, she sets out to find their killer. On the journey, she meets Aiden, a vampire hunter.
I do put a recommendation on the description for my books. Damaged: Natalie's Story is for grades 9 and up. Teagan's Story: Her Battle With Epilepsy is for grades 8 and up. If I Die Young is for grades 6 and up. Both The Ultimate Sacrifice and Secret Bloodline are for grades 9 and up.
You have tackled hard hitting storylines and paranormal elements. Is there any other genres you would like to try you hand at such as dystopian etc.
You never know :) I love writing the real life dramas, they are my favorites. Paranormals are fun to write and I already have a few more ideas, so I will definitely release more of them in the future. I have thought about doing a dystopian, but I haven't had an awesome idea come to me yet. I'm open to whatever my mind decides to write. Young adult is my first love. I'm not sure if I'll ever stray from that, but perhaps readers will see some different sub-genres emerge within my YA books.
You also have a story in the THE HALLOWEEN COLLECTION FROM THE INDIE ECLECTIVE. How did you become a part of this collection?
I am one of the members in The Indie Eclective. We decided to do some holiday collections. This Halloween one was our first. It's an honor to be a part of this wild, glittery group.
Are you currently working on any new projects?
Are you currently working on any new projects?
I am in the middle of editing an edgy YA drama titled, Lost and Found. I'm about a third of the way into writing Roots and Wings (Book 2 of The Gifted Teens Series). The Indie Eclective will also be releasing a winter holiday collection, which I will have a short story in. I am also in the brainstorming stages of writing a YA book with another awesome writer. As for next year, I will be working on some books, but not pushing myself as much. My husband and I are expecting a baby in March, so I don't want to have a lot of deadlines hanging over my head.
Thanks to Talia for this awesome interview.
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