Name: Vivien Reis
Congratulations on your book. How nerve wracking was it to finally see it in print?
I haven’t actually seen it in print but I’m looking forward to it. Should be in the next couple weeks!
When did you start seriously writing?
I would say July 2015, when I first started writing The Elysian Prophecy (TEP). I’ve written stories since I was in elementary school, but didn’t pursue it as a career option until I started TEP.
What genre are your books?
TEP is a YA dark fantasy. I had never written anything like this, and didn’t set out to. TEP was originally a first-contact story, and is NOTHING like what I originally thought it would be. While writing this mind-of-its-own story, I realized I have a knack for writing dark scenes and think I’ll give the horror genre a whirl in the future.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
I write in my spare time. I have a full-time job as a Mechanical Engineer with the Department of the Navy.
What inspired you to write your first book?
The first “book” I wrote was technically a Winnie the Pooh fan-fiction. I was eight. Pooh inspired me. And Tigger. And Piglet.
Do you aim for a set number of words/pages per day?
I don’t. It’s difficult for me to maintain a number of words/pages every day, as most often I’m not actually writing these days but marketing and working on the business side of writing. Hopefully when the house repairs and wedding planning dies down I can get back to writing every day. When I am in the habit of writing, around 2,000 words a day feels like a happy place. I don’t force myself to write this amount, but I usually feel best when I write at least 2k a day.
You have written The Elysian Prophecy, what was the hardest thing about writing?
The hardest part of writing is always writing for me. I have a full-time job, like many writers out there, and my fiancé and I are undergoing extensive house renovations (still no kitchen…*sigh*) while planning for our wedding in September. Unfortunately, my writing and my YouTube presence has suffered for it, but that’s life. Sometimes you have to catch up in real life in order to make time for your writing life.
Did you learn anything from writing your book, The Elysian Prophecy, and what was it?
Don’t switch POV after the first draft is written. I changed from first person to the third and it was horrible. My novel would be published today if I hadn’t made that mistake.
Also, don’t kill yourself to meet a deadline. I had this immovable idea that my novel had to be published by Winter 2016. It just wasn’t possible, and I learned that rushing publication wasn’t helping anyone. My book would suffer and my readership would suffer. So I had to remove that emotional attachment, and learn that no matter how long it takes to publish, my novel is going to be the best it can be. I’ll gladly push back publication now if I know my novel will benefit from it.
If you had to choose, which writer(s) would you consider a mentor?
Definitely Kristen Martin. She answers any crazy writing/business-related questions I have, and she’s an amazing resource for me because she’s been through it already. It’s taken me nearly two years to publish this novel, and in that time she’s published three. She’s amazing!
Another early on mentor was Stacey Grice. She writes adult romance, but gave me wonderful advice on self-publishing and writing in general. I’ll always remember that Starbucks meet-up!
What advice would you have for other writers new to writing, or thinking about it?
Research and keep reading novels. Read books as the reader, but allow your inner-writer to occasionally analyze those scenes that reached out and punched you in the nose. Learn from those that have already been through it. Listen and try new things. I romanticized being a “pantser,” and didn’t realize until TEP that it was holding me back from finishing a novel. I’m definitely an outliner now and it’s all because I was willing to try.
What are you reading right now? Are there any authors (living or dead) that you would list as influences for your books?
I’m currently reading 4 different books, but the two main ones at the moment are A World Without Princes by Soman Chainani, and the Black Prism by Brent Weeks.
It wasn’t until I got about halfway through TEP that I realized I really enjoyed writing the darker parts. Around that time I had read a couple books by Dawn Kurtagich, and she’s so talented at creating the creepiest settings and characters. She was definitely influential in me channeling some creepy vibes for TEP.
What influenced you to write The Elysian Prophecy?
Every book I read. I read a good book and know that if they can do it, so can I.
TEP has been an amazing ride, and early on I knew it was unlike anything I had written before. The story gripped me and practically wrote itself. I couldn’t not finish writing it.
Are you currently working on another manuscript?
I’m currently working on a secret novella project, set in the world of Elysia but about 500 years earlier. It’ll be released at the same time as TEP.
Where can we buy, or see The Elysian Prophecy? (* include American, European and any other relevant links. Free, free promotions or prices can be included)
My book is not currently for sale, but check back on any of my social media accounts so you don’t miss my release day announcement. You can also sign up for my newsletter (http://eepurl.com/bNawEn) so you’ll be among the first to hear about any big TEP news!
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I’ll target this toward my viewers for now: thank you so much for all the support you give me! I can’t believe how far I’ve come in this journey and it’s all because of my viewers. I’ve gained a confidence in my ability to do this as a career that I wouldn’t have if it weren’t for you all! Thank you so much!