Today we are privileged to have my dear friend and fellow fantasy author, Candace J Thomas, here on the blog. Candace has been my cheerleader and spirit animal from the first day we spent time together behind Xchyler Publishing’s sales table at the 2015 Life, the Universe, and Everything Symposium. At that point, she embodied everything I wanted to be. She had two amazing books and was working on the third, she radiated warmth and confidence, and she knew the industry.
My big question for her is:
How has creating new worlds and characters changed your world view?
This is a beautiful question.
There are two answers that I came up with.
My first answer – It’s all in the details. I am an observer of life. I’ve always been a people-watcher. People fascinate me, their mannerisms, drives, motivations. When building characters, I focus on these kind of things and strive to make them real, as real as if I knew them in high school.
Also, as an observer, the world becomes a more vivid and interesting place. I search for the interesting peculiarities to bring a more human experience – or basically, the Charm of things.
Currently, I am writing a story that takes place in Chicago. When I visited, there were little things I noticed, like how sidewalks wind around where trees are planted. It’s a charming fact that makes it interesting and human. Maybe the casual reader wouldn’t notice such a little detail, but I find it fulfilling and necessary to my stories. Adding charm is attractive to me.
When in Austin, I saw a side wall outside of bar completely littered with industrial staples where band flyers once hung. I admired the dreams that once were and wondered what happened to the thousands of dreams that came and went.
Nature is a big fascination to me. I like the veins in leaves and how they change color. I like watching fuzzy caterpillars slink across the tree branches, just wandering about their day. I like broken sidewalks and aged cobblestone. As an author, I have a responsibility to bring an experience to the reader. If I don’t add the little details, the bits of charm, I feel like I’m failing. You can find little details in everything I write.
As to the second answer – being an author, in general, has changed my world view. I’m a simple person, with a very simple idea of life, but I am driven by creativity. I view things differently and communicate in the language of art. I am also dyslexic, but that never changed my desire to be creative and write. It did bring challenges and insecurities to what I was trying to do.
I have always ached to be a writer and had the drive to do it and be successful. There are pros and cons to authoring. Becoming an author has pushed my private writing public. It takes me out of my comfort zone and brings this out-going character to the stage. As an author, there is no hiding your mistakes and insecurities in writing. It’s out there for readers, and every reader has an opinion.
I’ve had to learn that not everyone loves reading fantasy, and not everyone will like what I’ve done. I’ve really grown and matured over the last five years being published. I’ve become a confident author and mentor to others. I’m much wiser and more conscientious about how my name, as a brand, is perceived. It’s like I took the blue pill in the Matrix and I can never view the world as general as I did before. But on the flipside, I get to influence readers and creators every time they open my books. That is the very best feeling in the world.
Want to connect with Candace? Of course you do, she’s awesome.
News! Candace’s book, Everstar, will be released in Audio very, very soon. Watch these links:
Candace J Thomas is an award-winning of Young Adult Fantasy and Sci-fi. She is the author of the Vivatera Series and Hawkweed, published by Xchyler Publishing. Her debut novel Vivatera won the LUW Diamond Award for Novel of the Year. Her Paranormal Satire, Vampire-ish: A Hypochondriac’s Tale, was published July 2016.
Candace is a freelance editor of the award-winning Billy Blacksmith series by Ben Ireland. as well as founder of Shadesilk Press.
Candace is known for her extreme fanatical love for both Count Chocula and smart, witty writing that expands her imagination and makes her wish she had thought of the idea.
Candace also hosted me on her blog in an Author Spotlight, go check it out!
Interested in doing a blog swap? Send me a line! Don’t worry, I don’t bite.
Love staying in touch? So do I! Let’s connect. You can follow here on WordPress, or choose your favorite social media – I’m on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.