Author Interview: Alivia Anders


A little about Alivia:

Gladly! My name is Alivia, I'm 20 years old, and I'm just starting to dip my toes into the waters of publishing. My Mom got my name from a reeeeally old TV show called Knots Landing and her huge love for Olivia Newton-John. Sadly, I can't sing like Olivia and acting has never been my forte. But for as long as I can recall I've been spinning tales. One day after cruising through countless quizzes on Quizilla one of my test results had a link to a website which turned out to be an RPG Forum board based on Harry Potter, called ReQuiem vicTus. I was intrigued instantly. The idea of creating a character of my own and writing with other characters created by other people became so much more appealing than just writing in a notebook by myself. Essentially, I took the 'backdoor' way into writing.

Can you tell me a little about your debut novel Illumine the first in The Illumine Series?

Illumine is the first in The Illumine Series, which follows the story of Essallie Hanley. This poor girl has been through more than any teenager should- murder, a fallen family, social out-casting. No one knows just how messed up this girl is though, no one is aware that she knows the attacker who killed her boyfriend, a demon summoned to kill her! He soon picks up that she isn't exactly one hundred percent human, and it sort of begins this nosedive into her life of both present and past, revealing why she was created, what she is, and what is meant to do.

Where did you get the idea for Illumine?

Illumine first started almost as a joke. I wish I could say there was some magical click or connection or dream that set this whole thing off, but it didn't. It started when I had stayed home one afternoon from school, woke up from a nap, sat in front of the computer and just wrote what I would come to know as the first piece of Essallie. For months I had been trying to make Kayden, who was initially named Dimitri, into a vampire in my manuscript because of how much I loved True Blood, but every time I tried it felt so wrong that I'd grow frustrated. Eventually I learned I just needed to sit back and let the idea come to me, and it would write itself in my mind exactly as it was supposed to.

How does it feel to have released your first book?

It feels so surreal, there aren't even words for it. The first time someone approached me in public and said, "You're the author of that book, Illumine, right?" I almost fainted! Seeing it on blogs, on Facebook, on Goodreads, it all chokes me up and leaves me so breathless to know I have something to my name like that, that I finally stepped forward and did what I've dreamed of for years. I hope the feeling never goes away, not even when I'm twenty books under my belt.

What genre would you class your novel?

Illumine is a Young Adult Urban Fantasy/Paranormal novel, with just a hint of Romance.

I really like the cover of Illumine. Who designed it and did you have much say in the designing process?

First off, I'm so glad you like it, thank you! Second, you may giggle at this, but I designed the cover! In the years I was involved heavily online on RPG Forums and sites alike, I did a ton of graphic design for character banners, avatars, wallpapers, you name it! Now it's more of an occasional hobby. I like to dabble with it when my brain is stuck or I have this idea for a banner. If you want, I can always show you some of my pieces! Illumine's cover was created in mind with the intent of showing the fire off of Essallie's skin, sort of silhouetting her arm and making it a huge focus point.

How many books will be in the Illumine series?

Currently I can tell you without a doubt that four books are projected. Six would be the most I'd ever go- I don't want Illumine to be this twelve book saga that just drags out everything for extra book space. Besides, if Illumine were to go on forever then how would I have time to write all the other novels I have in mind?

Can you tell us in one sentence why we should read Illumine?

Illumine is a fast-paced, head-spinning tale that will leave you eager for more of Essallie and Kayden!

Illmine launches in paperback on Febuary 21st 2012! Available in Ebook format now!

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