Nam: Elizabeth O. Smith
Age: I was born December 19
Where are you from: Baltimore, MD
A little about your self `ie your education, family life, etc:
I’m currently in college and when I’m not writing or going to school, I develop indie games with my friends. I think I’m a pretty funny person but that might just be me! I’m an only child, and have moved a lot over the years, so most of my friendships have been forged online. Also, my Mom is my world.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I just published my first book! I’m very excited about it. It’s called “Imago Dei” meaning Image of God. It’s a collection of gothic horror (among other things) containing short stories and flash fiction. Do check it out.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I can’t really remember a time when I wasn’t writing to be honest. I think one day I decided I was going to get the ideas and voices in my head onto paper no matter what.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Always. Professionally when Imago Dei was published.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I’ve amassed a lot of writing over the years and wanted to finally get it out there.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
Is purple prose still an insult? More seriously, I tend to focus on exposition to set the scene, and switch in-between first and second person depending on the story. I write in a variety of genres and styles. I also like to add rhythm to my sentence structure, even when I’m not writing poetry.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
From a couple of theology courses as well as my early years. I’ve always been fascinated by the question “were we created in God’s image or did we create God/god(s) in our own”? I try to consider what that implies about human nature in my book.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
We are a fickle species prone to anger but, can be quite beautiful in our rage.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic ?
I think a great deal. While some of the situations are unrealistic, even fantastical in nature, the emotions and experiences I based them on aren’t.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Some are what I’ve gone through and the rest are made up.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? A mentor?
“Something Wicked This Way Comes” by Ray Bradbury.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
“Eden’s Ore Secrets” by B.V. Bayly. I’m enjoying it so far!
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
None in particular! I consume so many novels that I start grouping in genres that spark my interest more these days.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
Right now I’m in the process of starting a new YA/Sci-Fi series dubbed “Glass Wings”. There’s two planned books (Cicada’s Trap and Hornet’s Nest). It features a diverse cast, solarpunk themes, and a lot of drone warfare!
I’m also planning a novella called “Sweet Cyanide & Empty Tombs”. I’m hoping for it to contain three short stories that are interconnected, two of which are in the title, and the other being A Time for Everything. I get a kick out of overly long titles, and obscure references, so figured if I put the name of the short stories in it, I’ll have no excuse to go over.
I have a children’s book and many other works on the back burners as well.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
The church, in the broadest sense of the word.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I sure do! It’s hard work and under appreciated. Regardless, I want it to be my full time career in the future.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Some of the stories. I think one or two don’t fit the overarching theme as much as I’d have liked them too.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Reading, mostly. Books were a good substitute for friends when I was younger, and I always thought how cool it would be to create worlds like that for other people.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Sure! It’s very rough, I’m in the early stages of this project after all.
An excerpt from Cicada’s Trap:
Not too much, not too fast. Triniti runs her fingers across the mark of the beast on his face. She’d seen him once before up close like this yet, this is the first time the town’s wild man has ever let her touch him before.
He takes her hand after a while, placing it on the dirt on the ground, demanding her to write. She frowns. All these years spent together and Triniti has only heard him speak a handful of time. Goliath, so they call him because of his height, can’t read. Well, more accurately he can’t read well.
“Okay… repeat after me. T. r. e. e. Tree,” She traces out the word with a nearby stick. She would laugh at how intensely he stares at her hand motions if not for the fact he might get mad. After doing it a few more times, Triniti hands over her makeshift pencil as he repeats the word tree in all caps.
Suddenly, however, his whole body tenses. His dark face shifts in the direction of the sun, casting even darker shadows across the words. Triniti waits, watches, while he frantically tried to warn her of what’s to come. Goliath writes a simple command in the dirt, his face tense. Triniti shivered under the setting sun tracing the word…
“RUN,” Triniti mouths, her eyes shooting up the length of Golaith’s body as he stands.
“Don’t forget me,” he whispers, his voice thick with an emotion she’s never heard. A horrified scream escapes her throat as hordes of Yellowjackets, soldiers for the enemy state, come flooding into the area.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Dialogue! I get so caught up trying to make it sound realistic, only to question if there’s such a thing as “realistic” when it comes to speech patterns in general.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I can’t say I have a favorite but, the ones I really enjoy (Dan Brown, Toni Morrison, and Ray Bradbury in particular) have the ability to transport me somewhere new, while also making me reevaluate the world around me.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Not right now! I’ve traveled around the U.S a lot and the Glass Wings series will partially be set in a dystopian, futuristic part of Alaska I’ve been too.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Finding the time to edit and format it.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I have much more patience then I thought I did! Also, MS Office formatting tools can either be your best friend or your worse enemy.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Don’t forget you’re human too. Sometimes we get so caught up in the worlds we create, we forget to take care of the one we live in.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thank you for giving me the chance to realize my dreams!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Not really but the one with the most lasting impression has to be “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
I have a pretty dark sense of humor but also enjoy cute animal and baby videos. I think I laugh the hardest at people messing up, and cry for the very same reasons.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
One of my ancestors. I want to ask them what it was like crossing over in the slave trade.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why?
“Rest in Power”
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
Reading, sleeping, and making games. Rinse and repeat.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I’m a fan of foreign soap operas, and am really enjoying “Fallen Skies” right now.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
My favorite foods are hamburgers and chocolate. My favorite color is pastel and dark blues. I’ve been jamming to “Melody” by Oliver Heldens for weeks now, and all sorts of remixes to “Adagio for Strings” by Samuel Barber.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I’d probably be a couch potato. But, in all honesty, I can’t imagine myself doing anything that doesn’t involve writing full time, or and teaching others. So, maybe a professor or something akin to that.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Amazon Authors Page
Elizabeth O. Smith is a young author trying to pin down her ideas
before it’s too late. Elizabeth dabbles in a bit of everything but has
a fondness for young adult literature, horror, and short form fiction.
Diversity is a must in her creative endeavors. Elizabeth lives in the
Midwest and hails from the East Coast. When not in college
contemplating life, she’s people watching, investigating innovative
ways to shape old stories. Visit her website elizabethosmith.com for
more information, or follow her on Twitter @Author_ESmith.