Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Author Interview : W.I. Zard

  I like this photo so much Drishti! 

Hye! Thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
Thank you for offering, this is so exciting!  My name is Drishti, I grew up in Sydney and completed all of my formal education there, but have recently moved back to Indonesia to be closer to my family. I love Reading and watching TV and movies. Writing is like my version of therapy. I go by the pseudonym W.I. Zard for my writing, mainly because I have experienced the difficulty that people have pronouncing my name and hence wanted to forge a name for myself that would be easily recognised and remembered. I took inspiration from the likes of Lemony Snicket.

What authors do you like to read? What book or books have had a strong influence on you or your writing?
There are so many! I love Stephanie Perkins, Kody Keplinger, Rainbow Powell, Veronica Roth, J.K. Rowling and so many more. Vicky Angel by Jacqueline Wilson and The Promise by Danielle Steele are the two books that I think have had the most influence on my writing so far.

Which writers inspire you?
Shakespeare, Jane Austen and Danielle Steele have probably been the ones to have the most influence on my writing. Shakespeare is my Messiah! While I have since grown out of Twilight, Stephenie Meyer is the author that begun my writing journey through fanfiction.

 So, what have you written?
My greatest achievement so far is Enchanted Incognito, which is a young adult fantasy romance novel. I started writing the Sequel to EI earlier this year, but have since put it on the back burner to work on a novel that is a little closer to my heart, one inspired by some of the greatest challenges I have faced in my life. I will go back to finishing the Enchanted story at some stage though.

I have also written a few short stories and articles for local newspapers and blogs.

Where can we buy or see them?
Enchanted Incognito is available on most major online bookstores as well as via E-book. Although the best place would be my website. www.w-i-zard.com. Here under the Enchanted Incognito heading there is a link to purchase the novel. There are also tabs with access to my short stories and articles.

What genre is your book ?
Young Adult Fantasy and Romance. The one I am working on now will be Young Adult Romance as well, but without the fantasy.

What draws you to this genre?
I have always had a in interest in fantasy and the supernatural; since the days when I used to wish I was a charmed one as a kid, I always like the idea of being able to escape into another magical world whenever reality became too much to take.
The young adult genre, well I will be 24 in just a few weeks now, but in many ways I still feel like a teenager and that is something I hope I never lose, so I think that is what draws me to the young adult genre.

Do you write full-time or part-time?
Part time. I have dabbled in several different areas of work from Admin, to retail to the travel industry but am now heading down the teaching and training path.

Personally I don't think I would have much to write about if I didn't have another job or other things inspiring me and giving me stories.

 What do you think makes a good story?
The best books I have read are the ones that make me see myself or my world a little differently after I turn the last page. So while the usual things like character development, conflict, resolution and all of these things are what draw us in to a novel, I think books have so much power over us and hence the best stories are the ones that really make us think about the world we live in.

When did you decide to become a writer?
I first started writing when I was sixteen years old. I started by writing articles for my school newspaper and then I found fanfiction.net. There I met my editor and one of my best friends, and I started writing Twilight Fanfiction. After about a year I realised that I wanted to write something that I could actually take full ownership of, so I started Enchanted Incognito- it took me six years to finish!

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
A lot of people say that the best way to go about writing a novel is to plan it all out, write a five page synopsis that covers everything that is going to happen in the novel and then use that to give your book direction. I tried this for the sequel to Enchanted Incognito and found that once I was done writing the synopsis I felt bored of the story. I felt like I had already told it in a way, so it was done. That is why I had to take a step back from it and decided to first pursue this other story.

I realised that in my case, slowly uncovering each piece of the puzzle is where the fun comes in, that is what keeps me passionate about the story.

Who edited your book and how did you select him/her?
My friend that I met on Fanfiction was and still is my first editor. She is the one constantly telling me to show, not tell. Actually we both used to beta read for each other as we were both writing fanfiction at the time. She gave such good advice and it helped that she's a writer too, because whenever either of us would get stuck we would bounce ideas off each other. So it was a no brainer when I started writing Enchanted, that I would ask her to edit for me.

How are you publishing your books and why?
So far I have self published. The why is simple really. I got tired of waiting for a publishing house to do it for me. I believed in my story and my writing and knew that I could only continue to improve on it, the more I wrote.

Do you have any other advice to other authors on how to market their books?
Marketing is tough. I have sent Enchanted Incognito to international book fairs and to publishing houses and agents and it still isn't where I want it to be. My sister taught me to use Instagram just a few weeks ago and that seems to have generated the most amount of interest so far. I don't think there is an exact science to it. I think its just about not giving up. Every rejection is another step closer to an acceptance.


♥ AWW HER PARENTS MADE HER AN ENCHANTED INCOGNITO CUSHION FOR HER BIRTHDAY! I really love how they are so supportive and proud of their daughter. 

Thank you for aggreing to this interview Drishti! It means a lot to me.