1) Tell us about your current or last science fiction novel. What is it about and how did you come up with the concept?

“Vanished” (working title) is my sci-fi novel in the works and is the first in a series about humans and aliens discovering each other in a very unexpected way, and how they work together to all their benefit. “Vanished” starts the story off with humans finding and colonizing the long-searched for Planet X, only for it to disappear entirely from our galaxy. It will follow three protagonists, one human each from Earth and the colony, and one alien that the colonist will interact with. I’ve been working on this story for a long time. It started as a very different idea about a planet being used as a prison colony, and was very much influenced by popular YA novels of the time (think Hunger Games, Divergent, etc). I played with the concept in that form for years but was never satisfied with it, and finally decided to try some different ideas until I finally found one that I felt I really liked and felt I could make work.

2) How did you get started writing science fiction?

Vanished is actually my first sci-fi novel. Fantasy is my main genre, but I’ve always loved to read all things speculative fiction. Writing sci-fi comes more from just exploring different story ideas and seeing where they naturally land than specifically choosing it as a genre.

3) What specific sub-genres within science fiction do you write in and why?

I write science-fantasy. Writing hard science fiction is beyond me, it’s too technical. I like the idea of science fiction and fantasy- technology and magic- playing alongside each other, and all the possibilities that opens up. And adding the element of magic to technology means I don’t have to try to make everything make scientific sense and gives me more freedom to play around and have fun with it.

4) Do you prefer to write in first or third person and past or present tense?

I don’t have a strong preference for any of them and have used all of them at one time or another. It just depends on the story I’m writing and whichever one tells that story best.

5) What is your favorite part about being a writer?

I love world-building! Creating universes, filling them with characters and stories, figuring out how the world works—all of this is just fun to me. It’s like playtime. Even though I know I can’t (or at least shouldn’t) include all of this background information in a story, I just enjoy building up as much detail into a world as possible. I have a fantasy universe that I’m working on that I’ve been working on for years. While I plan on eventually releasing books from it, right now it’s just a giant playground. Other than that I really love the actual act of writing. Whether it’s typing away at a keyboard or writing a story out by hand, writing is magic.

6) What is the hardest part about being a writer?

I haven’t gotten to the point of publication and marketing yet, but looking ahead to it I know that’s what I’ll struggle the most with. Even just being active on social media is something I’m not great at, so I know that promoting myself and trying to get readers is not going to be easy. I plan to take my time getting there and learn as much as I can before then to try to ease my anxiety about it and build up some confidence.

7) What stories or authors influence your writing?

Tolkien, Neal Shusterman, Brandon Sanderson, Suzanne Collins, and Garth Nix are some of my favorite authors and have written some of my absolute favorite books. I don’t know that they so much influence my writing, but they certainly inspire me.

8) Recommend a great science fiction book or movie that we might have missed you didn’t create?

The Pendragon Series by D.J. MacHale is a really fun science fantasy series and one of my favorites. At ten books (plus three prequel novels) it’s quite an undertaking to suggest, but so worth it.

9) What’s the best way to find you online?

At the moment Twitter is the only place you’ll find me