Please give LV Barat a warm welcome.
1. Can you tell us a bit about your book, Eye of the Hawk?
An island exists in the far north surrounded by an astral golden band, inhabited by Jaanaarians, a people descended from gods who possess unrivaled magical talent. They cannot leave the island because some of their people became corrupted, bidding themselves out to the highest bidder of the royal houses of Perthia.
A shapeshifter named Hawk is sent on a mission that is given to him in coded verses by a Jaanaarian druid. He must discover the meaning of these verses during the mission. He goes through an elemental portal to arrive at the correct destination.
In the Crystal Palace of Corvasa, the Fire Globe has been stolen. It is an ancient relic that controls elemental Fire. Each country holds an elemental globe and changes the element every twelve years. They were gifts from the gods at the beginning of time.
Sillisnae is an Adept’s Apprentice at the Crystal Palace who studies magic under the tutelage of Lord Korodale, the Daimon Direttore and head sorcerer to the King. After hearing of the Fire Globe’s disappearance, she decides to do a little investigating of her own.
2. When did you first realize you wanted to pursue writing as more than a hobby?
I’ve always known I would be a writer. It was just a matter of acquiring enough self-discipline and that began to happen about five years ago.
3. What modern author do you admire most and why?
This is a difficult question to answer because I don’t really have a favorite author whose stories I admire over others. I tend to favor the works rather than the author. Some of my favorite books are Dune by Frank Herbert, The Dark Tower Series by Stephen King, especially “The Drawing of the Three”, “The Hellbound Heart” by Clive Barker. I read George R.R. Martin and Terry Goodkind as well. Whenever I’m engrossed in one of their stories, they are my favorite author at the time but then I move onto another novel by someone else and fall in love.
4. Can you give us a brief rundown of your writing process?
I write between three and four thousand words a day. The story streams into my consciousness and I just write whatever I am experiencing in my mind. It is like writing down a daydream. At this stage, I don’t bother with selecting interesting words or making notes about the story. For the second draft, I fill out the story with description, clean up any discrepancies, and link events on the timeline. The second draft takes much longer than the first. The third draft is to correct grammar and spelling and check for mistakes in story and character development.
I’m what is known as a ‘pantser’, meaning I fly by the seat of my pants while I write rather than a ‘planner’ who makes extensive notes and follows an outline. Sometimes I’ll begin a manuscript in the middle, go to the end, then back to the beginning. I just go where the inspiration takes me.
5. What’s the hardest part of the writing process for you and how do you make it easier for yourself?
The most difficult thing for me is writing every day. Sometimes I’m just not feeling it. When that happens, I write some poetry and it usually gets my thinking into a mystical mode and I can move forward.
6. What’s your take on writer’s block? Does it exist, and if it does, how can you cure it?
I think writer’s block exists but I’ve never had it. I know some people experience it. I believe one reason I’ve never had it is because I don’t try to think the story, I let the story ‘think’ me. Like I said before, it is more like following a daydream, something called ‘journeying’ in the shamanic community.
7. Why did you choose an ebook publisher over a traditional publisher?
This is my first novel and I do not have a book agent yet. The manuscript was rejected by TOR and it took six months to receive an answer. Ebooks are the future and the great thing with Musa is if an author sells well, they will publish in print.
8. What was it like to work with an editor for the first time?
It was a very pleasant experience. I really saw how my writing can improve. The editor revealed the immense value of limiting repetition, propositions, and filtered experiences of the characters.
9. If you could give an aspiring writer one piece of advice and only one, what would it be?
Only write what inspires you, not what you think you should be writing. What inspires you will give you energy, what bores you will drain you.
10. What are you working on that readers can look forward to?
Currently I’m writing the third novel in the “Tears of Gods and Dragons” trilogy. The second is finished and waiting for content edits.
LV Barat has been writing fiction and non-fiction for twenty years. Epic fantasy is her genre of choice whilst some suspenseful mystery has managed to worm its way into her opus corpus.Jane Eyre was the first novel she read as a prepubescent. Its gray, mysterious moors and subdued emotions that raged under the surface of its characters called to her longingly, convincing something deep within her to become a writer.LV Barat lives in the Rocky Mountains, the spine of North America. An enchanted place of glistening pine needles, massive boulders, jutting gray crags, stealthy red foxes and antlered elk. You can find her at www.lvbarat.com.
You can purchase a copy of Eye of the Hawk here.