Monday, December 30, 2013

Author Interview: Kya Aliana: Just 19 With 4 Novels Already Published

Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers
Kya Aliana, a 19 year old author, carefully contrives her craft, morphing the characters and plot into a twisted web full of intoxicating suspense. Her wickedly insightful characters, combined with a plot full of twists and turns of all extremes, offer the perfect scenario for chills, as she steadily masters the several dark layers of horror. Her books offer an intelligent, refreshing, and clever thrill-ride for all readers.

She has a great expressing power in choosing rights words to put right impact at right place with right vigor. Welcome Kya on board and wish you all the best for all your upcoming ventures in life.

Your real name and pen name?

My real name is: Kya Andrea Aliana Stillson. I’ve always loved my middle name, “Aliana”, a lot so when I started writing I decided that’s the one I wanted to go with so on all my books it says “Kya Aliana”.

Please share some of the best memories of your childhood

I’ve always been really close with my little brother and sister. My best childhood memories consist of playing pirates or spies with them in the woods. When we were really little – I was about 8 years old – we lived out in the middle of nowhere. We had two ponds and a whole forest in our backyard. I can’t begin to tell you how many adventures we had! It was basically our introduction to roleplaying, character developing, and then when I started keeping a journal and writing all our adventures down I realized that I enjoyed it. When I was about 13 I decided to make something up; it turned into a novel and my career took off from there!

About your education

I had a wonderful and determined mom who decided to homeschool all three of us. I really enjoyed it and wouldn’t want it any other way. It was fantastic to have one-on-one time where I could really absorb what was being taught and not only the fundamentals in “education” but the fundamentals in life as well. “home ec” was canning food, learning to make bread from scratch, helping out with homemade dinners, and keeping the house clean. As I grew older and into high school, I was able to pick and choose other courses as well. In addition to all the required reading, courses, algebra etc. etc., I also took a communications course, tons of writing workshops, psychology, and anything else I was interested in. I loved it because it gave me time to focus on what I loved to do instead of being preoccupied with the “image” I would have worried about if I went to public school. I also had a great group of friends and practically lived at the public library where we had all sorts of writing and reading groups where we weren’t afraid to be ourselves and gave all kids a chance to not be so worried about their “image”.

What career did you plan during your education days?

I’ve been all over the map. When I was really little (about 2 or 3 my mom tells me), I wanted to be a garbage collector to help save the environment. I remember wanting to be a school teacher when I was around 6, and then I wanted to be a swashbuckling pirate at age 8 or 9. When I was 11 I started getting serious and wanted to be a school teacher that worked with the special education kids. Then, when I was 13 I started thinking that I wanted to reach out to everybody and give something for everyone to think about and enjoy. I started writing a novel for fun; when I finished I realized that I could publish it and it would reach a lot of people. In my following novels I try to give important underlying messages through the fun of fiction. My hope is that one day I will give people something to think about, experiences through characters that will help them in real life situation, and I hope to one day write the novel that has something for everyone.

What languages you can speak and write?

Currently I’m only fluent in English, but I’m learning Spanish. I also have a basic understanding of Latin that I hope to expand. And for some reason I have a thirst to learn French. A few people have told me it’s a worth while language that I – as a writer - will love because there are a lot more words to describe emotions and feelings.

What is your biggest source of inspiration in life?

I have many inspirations from supporting and loving family & friends, to aspiring authors I meet and discover! But my biggest source of inspiration comes from the love of my life, Zariel Shore. We’ve been together since I was 14 and he was 16. We moved in last year and our relationship has grown so strong since then. He’s a glass artist that’s focusing on marbles, and starting to branch out into goblets and sculpture work. It’s truly amazing because we both work from home, we’re both artists in very different ways, we support and encourage each other the best we can, and we keep each other going. He inspires me as I inspire him. We believe in each other and are building the life we want: we’re working hard to secure a happy and successful life for us as well as our future kids. I think it’s just so amazing that we found each other, are so young yet know what we want to do, and are doing it!

What hurts you most in this world?

Selfishness. It hurts my heart to see people who are so selfish and care only for themselves. I’m very lucky and grateful to have the life I do; and whenever I can I help people who need it. I’m a very empathetic person and hate to see someone suffering. I encourage people to follow their dreams, am always here to talk to my friends who are going through a hard time. I give to the homeless whenever I can. I hardly ever buy things for myself, and instead always want to give others meaningful gifts. It’s a hard balance to find: I have to be careful to realize when giving starts to hinder myself and what I need in life. Zariel and I try to give a lot, but also be conscious of what we are working to achieve. We’re saving money for our future so we can one day buy a house and give our children the life they deserve.

What is the biggest challenge you have faced? How did you overcome it?

The biggest challenge is losing my Grandad. He passed away last April and it’s been really tough on me. We were very close and I could talk to him about anything and everything under the sun. He would help me solve any problem I had and gave me a lot of the communication skills that I have today. He loved that I decided to become a writer and would always encourage me. He believed in me like no other. I’m so grateful that he lived long enough to see me publish a couple novels, win an award for a short story, but most of all to read “Adrenaline”, the novella that I dedicated to him.
It’s been a long year and I’m still struggling with grief. I’ve been doing a lot of journaling to get through it and sift through my own emotions. I haven’t stopped writing, and if anything my writing has gotten a lot better through pouring my emotions into it: Just like he would’ve wanted!
Zariel and I moved down to Florida and into his house with my grandmother (his wife). It’s been a comfort to be here and I can still feel his energy floating around. I feel that sometimes I get inspired for seemingly no reason at all and I like to believe it’s because he’s smiling down on me.

What is your favorite genre and why?

I absolutely love horror! It’s probably my favorite genre because it’s really imaginative and I love the adrenaline rush it gives me. The characters are so creative and usually well developed. They offer an array of psychological intrigue, as well as a great variety of emotions. It always makes me think, gives me a thrill, and a whole new world to escape to when I want.

When did you start writing? What is the purpose of your writing?

I’ve been writing ever since I can remember (starting with stories in a journal). I started writing my first novel at 13. I was very inspired by S.E. Hinton’s “The Outsiders” and how her characters went through so many emotions. They felt like real people to me and I wanted to create my own characters. So I started jotting down some paragraphs and before I knew it I had a whole novel. I didn’t really think I would write again, but after a couple weeks I couldn’t take it. I picked up my pen (yes, at this point I didn’t have my own computer so I wrote by pen. My entire first novel of 70,000 words was written by hand in school notebooks!) and started writing about vampires and not the kind that sparkle as I’d just finished reading “Salems’ Lot” by Stephen King.
My writing has matured so much since those early days. I’ve now realized that I will influence every single person who picks up my book (after all, isn’t that the beauty of a book?). So now, I’m working hard to develop my writing skills and offer something more for the reader to think about.
In the novel I am working on now, “Sleepwalker”, I’m going between two different realities. My hope to is showcase interpersonal relationships, communication problems, and current issues that are reflected in our society. Of course my fictional book won’t have all the answers, but hopefully it will make others think. It’s also not written in a cheesy way or documentary way: it’s action packed, full of thrills, suspense, and completely fictional with just an underlying and particular essence of “think on a bigger scale”.

Which of your work has been published so far?

I published “Impending Doom” a vampire novel when I was 15 years old. I’d say it’s pretty good for a novel written by a 15 year old, but compared to my latest stuff it’s absolutely ridiculous. So I made it free to read on Smashwords.com

I have three published novels for sale on Amazon (available in paperback and Kindle e-book).

“Sly Darkness” which is about four kids who set off in the woods to find a missing boy… only to get lost themselves and realize how much they don’t know each other.

“Adrenaline” which is basically a mystery about death itself. It’s also the novella I dedicated to my Grandad and featured a character inspired by him.

And last but not least, my latest published work, “Lost Souls” the first in a trilogy. It’s about world domination, prophecies, fighting, action, escaping oppression, freeing yourself from constricting beliefs, learning who to trust and why, betrayal, oh and did I mention zombies? And a whooole lot of mystery! It offers a new take on zombies: I hope to offer a brand new reason as to “why” they are here, “how” it happened, and a few new spins on what the species can do.

Would you like to share a synopsis of your work?

Sure! I would love to, thank you for asking. Here is the first chapter in the novel I’m currently pouring my emotions into, “Sleepwalker”.

This is the end. Dark shadows spread their slender fingers through the bedroom and push open the door. Outside my window, the sky is painted with vibrant pinks and purples as the sun slips under the sea. The time is upon us; soon she will be here, ready to take me away. My lungs fill with the salty air that drifts through past the curtains and I hold it in. This is it. This is how it ends.
            The shadows from under the desk reach out as they slowly take over the floor. I return my attention to window. The children’s laughs fill my ears as I watch the parents pack up the picnics. Waves crash down, taking a little more beach each time. The sky’s watercolor painted appearance slowly fades. It’s the moon’s turn to light the way. The innocent children splash through the water, darting around with no direction.
            “This isn’t just another sunset, you know.”
            I remain silent, but my thoughts boom in my head. Fear tears at the edge of my sanity. What’s next? I wonder. Her cold grasp clutches my shoulder. I catch a glimpse of her yellow fingernails through my peripheral and shudder. I’m not ready for this.
            “Just remember,” her icy voice rasps, “you summoned me here.”
            I keep my gaze on the sea. The golden tint fades, the colors vanish: night takes over. My heart sinks as the waves lap over the small footprints on the shoreline.
            “So this,” I begin, “is how it ends.” I turn to face her. She glides across the room, confined to the shadows. Her black dress flows in the sea breeze, her hair masking her face.
            “Everything must come to an end eventually.” A breeze drifts through the musty apartment; it catches her left side, spreading her long black hair across her face. Her electric green eyes glow behind the natural mask.
            I feel my face go hot as my hands clutch the sides of my wheelchair. My elbows beg to cave as I force myself up. My shaky knees struggle to hold my weight. I refuse to release my breath and gather all the courage left inside of me. I release my grip from the wheelchair and a sharp pain shoots down my leg as my knees begin to buckle. My hand darts to the dresser and clutches the edge.
            “This is what you wanted,” her voice drifts past me; I’m too focused on standing again to pay attention. My hand thumps against the dresser with each wobbly step my feet take.
            “There’s another world out there.” My voice sounds different to me; it’s smaller than it used to be. The dark angel’s eyes lock with mine and a smile tugs on the corners of her blood red lips. “A world that’s different. It’s the reason you don’t want to get out of bed in the morning: the reason you don’t want to wake up.” I swallow hard. “The reason you never want to leave once you go unconscious.”
            “That’s why I’m here.” Her voice echoes throughout my mind, ricocheting between the corners of rationality and absurdity.  “Insanity hit you like a plague. It fills your mind and controls you. I’m the cure, Shane.”
Her pasty white arms extend forward. Her boney fingers clutch my torso as she pulls me in. Her hair flaps back out of her face in a frenzy. My heart lurches as she levitates off the ground. Her sunken green eyes illuminate the terror I strive to hide behind my own.


What are your forthcoming writings?

Glad you asked! 2014 is going to be filled with new publications. As you know I’m working on “Sleepwalker” which I’m actually hoping to get published by a publishing house (my previous books have all been self-published). I’m not sure who to go with, or where I will submit. I have a lot of research to do, not to mention finishing the novel (the easy part), but hopefully it will be released in 2014.

I’m also definitely going to publish the sequel to “Lost Souls”. Due to reasons beyond my control, I was unable to truly participate in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month in November, where one writes a novel of at least 50,000 words in just one month) this year, I’m going to start writing it on New Year’s and hopefully finish it in the month of January.

I have already written a vampire trilogy – again, keep in mind these are not the kind that sparkle – and just need to revise all three books before publishing: I’m hoping to do that in the early months and release the first one for my Summer publication.

And who knows what else will find it’s way to me: I’m sure there will be more!

What four top most things you take care of while writing a book?

First and foremost I develop the characters. I’ve found that you can have a brilliant writing style, and epic plot, and 100,000 words but it means nothing if your reader doesn’t attach to your characters. If the reader doesn’t care or can’t relate to the characters in your novel, why would they care to read it?

Next comes the plot line. I feel I have to have a good plot line, something that avoids clichés, and is riveting to keep the reader turning the pages.

Then, I have to build interpersonal relationships. The characters have to able to “feed” off each other, affect each other in every move they make. Otherwise the plot can fall dry, predictable, and therefore the reader looses interest.

Finally, REVISING! Revising can be the hardest part, but probably the most important. A writer needs to reread (after they finish the first draft) to make sure they stay consistent. I found that a lot of times I start out with one idea, but then it develops and morphs into something else. So revising becomes of upmost importance.

Your dream destination on Earth?

I haven’t found this yet… I don’t think it exists. There isn’t one place I would love to be or strive to get to. I more dream of a state of mind. I will happy anywhere on earth as long as I am with loved ones, feel comfortable raising my kids there, and can find friends.

Your favorite time of the day?

My favorite time of day isn’t really “day” at all. The night inspires me, fills me with a sense of curiosity, and keeps me awake. I do my best writing at night, and usually sleep through the day. Hence why most of my friends think I’m something of a vampire.

Your favorite color and why?

My favorite color is a deep purple. It’s soothing to look at and I find it calming.

Your favorite celebrity and why?

Hands down, Russell Brand! He has some great ideas, he isn’t afraid to point out what’s going on in the world when most people don’t want to see it. Even if I don’t agree with him all the time (though mostly I do) he always makes me think about things in a different way: a necessary way. I hope to one day meet him; I just know we would have a fantastic conversation and hopefully both be able to open the other’s mind a little bit more.

Your favorite food?

Sushi! Oh my God, sushi! I always find it rejuvenating and I feel like I can take on the world and get everything done after I’ve eaten it.

Some quickies: Sun or Moon, Laughter or Smile, Morning or Evening, Coffee or Tea, Mountain or Sea, Long Drive or Short Drive, Silence or Conversation, Water or Fire, Air or Earth, Mars or Jupiter, Moon or Sun, Tulip or Rose, Red or Blue, Left or Right, Glance or Stare?

Moon: Everything looks so beautiful and unique when in the moonlight caresses it.

Laughter: smiles are great, but when you laugh you feed your soul and add years to your life. One of my favorite things to do is laugh until my abs scream in protest!

Evening: The perfect time to relax and reflect on life as you chill on the back porch.

Coffee: How else am I supposed to stay up and write the books I do?

Sea: I grew up in the mountains and I love them. But there’s something about the sea that balances me, sooths my bad days, and keeps me inspired with fresh, ever-changing ideas.

Long drive: with lots of music, junk food, and good friends!

Conversation: While silence is good sometimes, conversations build me up, make me think, and hopefully – if they’re truly worthwhile conversations – make me question something I was previously certain about.

Water: soothing, flowing, allowing you to drift through life in a calm way but an unnoticed way: you can rush, you can fall, you can make noise, or sit perfectly still. Water is an amazing form that allows you absolute freedom.

Earth: It’s important to stay grounded and not get too carried away. Know who you are.

Mars: That’s where I find the Martians, right?

Rose: The only thing that can smell beautiful.

Red: A vibrant color!

Left or Right: Whichever way the path takes me.

Glance: Just a quick glance to see how somebody responds. A glance lets someone know that you are interested, intrigued, but not yet absorbed. A welcome invitation in my world.

What three words come to your mind for each – Technology, Life, God, Humanity, Terrorism, Racism, Childhood Abuse, Love, Parenting, Old age.

Technology: Growing, Changing, Advancing.
Life: Adventure, Changing, Unknown.
God: Judgmental, Comfort, Possible.
Humanity: Naïve, Learning, Emotional.
Terrorism: Unfortunate, Sad, War.
Racism: Confusing, Unnecessary, Sad.
Childhood Abuse: Heart-wrenching, Terrible, Outrageous.
Love: Involuntary, Unconditional, Surrounding.
Parenting: Tricky, Fun, Learning.
Old Age: Kind, Gentle, Grandparents.

State your signature line/ tagline/ best quote

“Fear will do one thing and one thing only: Hold you back.”


The last line of your autobiography would be…

“Every new beginning is some beginning’s end” (also my favorite Bon Jovi quote from the song “Welcome to Wherever You Are”.

Links:







badge buzzoole code