Sunday, June 01, 2014

Author Interview: Vanna Smythe: Fantasy Trilogy: Anniversary of the Veil

She is the author of the Anniversary of the Veil fantasy trilogy. She has been writing creatively since her early teens, though one could say her creative writing efforts started long before that. While still in kindergarten, she once tore up a library book to make alphabet soup, and has been fascinated with what words can do, the pictures and worlds they can create, ever since.

Welcome Vanna Smythe onboard!

About your education. What career did you plan during your education days?

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and a Mater’s Degree in Human Rights. But writing has always been my passion, so I started working as a journalist while I was still at school. On some level, I always knew I wanted to be a writer, and I still work as a copywriter at my day job. Though fiction is my first love.

What hurts you most in this world?

The one thing that can always move me to tears is injustice and oppression, especially on a wider, national scale.  Most of my books deal with some form of oppression, though more as an underlying theme of the story.

If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead personality, who would it be and why?

Since being an author is my primary goal in life, I’d love to get inside the head of one of the classic masters. I don’t have anyone in particular in mind, though Shakespeare’s would certainly be a mind worth exploring.

What is your favorite genre and why?

I’m very partial to fantasy and science fiction. Though I also enjoy a good spy thriller and anything written by Agatha Christie.

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

I wrote my first story in second grade. For me, the main purpose of writing is telling stories and getting into the hearts and minds of the characters that inhabit them. 

Which of your work has been published so far? Would you like to share a synopsis of your work?

I have recently completed a fantasy trilogy, titled Anniversary of the Veil. Since the description explains the story best, I’m pasting it below:

Kae always wanted to be a fighter. Now that he's made it into the ranks of the elite Protectors of the Realm, he discovers he isn't meant to protect his homeland but something far greater: the Veil.

The Veil is a barrier created 1000 years ago and it separates the world in two. On one side lie untold stores of magic. On the other--Kae's side--magic is all but gone, eradicated by the priests over centuries, and he's one of only a few who can wield it. The priests, who secretly rule the Realm, see Kae's magical abilities as both a threat and a tool, and will do everything they can to control him. It's a price Kae's willing to pay to be the Protector he's always dreamed of being, even though it comes between him and Issa, the girl he loves.

But the Veil has weakened over the last thousand years, and powers on both sides will do anything to prevent it from failing. Strangers have kidnapped Issa and intend to sacrifice her to strengthen the Veil. Kae is the only one who can save her before it's too late. But if he goes after her, he will lose everything he's worked so hard to attain. Yet if Kae chooses duty over love, Issa will die.

What are your forthcoming writings?

I’m currently working on a YA dystopian book, which will be the first in a new series. It is set on Earth in the year 2142, but the world is much different than the one we know today. The environmental crisis has reduced the world’s population down to less then a billion. The rich and powerful have retreated into a few remaining megacities, while the rest are left to fend for themselves in the dying wastelands of the world.  Countries and governments crumbled under the pressure of the environmentally displaced refugees, and the world is now run by powerful families, whose primary goal is holding power and making a profit. 

The story follows Maya, a young girl who believes she has the power to right the weather and heal the dying world. But her realizing this dream will come down to whether Ty, the son of the ruling family of one of the megacities will help her. The problem is, that Ty has never gone against his family’s wishes, nor does he really plan to do so now that Maya needs his help. But just maybe, falling in love with Maya will make Ty reconsider.

What are your future plans?

I’m planning to launch my new series in the next month or so, and then get busy writing the sequel. I have many more stories to tell after that :)

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

First, I usually come up with the characters, and their goals. After that, I figure out how the story will play out, what the climax will be, and how it will be resolved. Then, I start writing and complete the first draft all the way through from beginning to end. Last is the revision, which is not my favorite part of the writing process. I’m really working hard to become a one-draft writer.

Your favorite time of the day?

I like the evening and early night. That’s also the time when I’m most productive.

Your zodiac/ sun sign?

I’m a Scorpio.

Your favorite color and why?

It’s red. Though I’m also very partial to black.

Some quickies:

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

State your signature line/ tagline/ best quote

“To thine own self be true.” Polonius, in Hamlet.


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