H. C. Playa is the author of Pirates of Happenstance, one of the many fine stories appearing in the soon to be available Dark Oak Press anthology, A Tall Ship, a Star, and Plunder.
She is a writer, a mad scientist in training (translation: full time graduate student), a mother of three, and an animal wrangler. Although, some days she wonders if maybe she's the one being wrangled.
An avid reader since the precocious age of four, she devoured books from numerous genres, but science fiction and fantasy hold a special place in her heart. A rambling, late night phone conversation with her sister sparked an idea, which led to discovering a new passion. Bitten by the writing bug, at last count she had seven novels in various stages of completion, and a growing collection of short stories.
Her favorite activity is to play in fantastical worlds, as
it's the best adventure there is.
She kindly stopped by Krogfiction for an interview. Here it is.
Why do you write at all? What made want to spend your life on work to which a smaller and smaller percentage of Western culture is receptive every year and for which most folks doing it receive very little monetary remuneration?
I’m contrary. J I am, but in truth, once I discovered writing, I couldn’t cease writing. Sure, it would be nice to make tons of money, but that isn’t why I write. There’s a joy, an overwhelming excitement when you craft a story and it all comes together. I get much the same buzz after reading a good book, or watching an excellent movie, but this comes from a deeper place because it is mine.
Who is your favorite author? Why?
Sherrilyn Kenyon. Granted I love many, many authors’ works, but I adore her. She creates vivid characters and complex plots with story arc across multiple series. I envy the depth of her creations. Every book takes you on a roller coaster of emotion. I think, in part, I admire her even more, as I’ve had the wonderful privilege to meet her on several occasions and she is such a genuinely nice person.
What is your favorite book?
I could never pick only one.
What’s the best response a fan or critic has ever given to your work, and how did you respond to it?
I’ve had a number of people read my work. The most common reason given for why they like it is that they love the characters. It’s an amazing thing to bring life to this fictional character and have others see them and love them. I always thank people, even while I’m still rather thunderstruck by how much some have enjoyed my work.
Is there a book you read again and again? Why?
I have entire shelves of what I call “re-readers”. There’s everything from Sherlock Holmes to Sherrilyn Kenyon’s series to A.C. Crispin’s Sarek. For me, it’s all about the characters. Rereading a beloved book is like sitting down and visiting with old friends.
How much do you read?
I used to be voracious, reading a book a day sometimes, but then life happened. I’m in school and have three kids, so my reading time has greatly decreased. I still make time to read, but I’ve had to learn to read in small spurts rather than devouring books all at once.
Where did you get your start in writing?
I’ve always loved stories, be it the written word, oral stories, or movies. I never wrote, never really tried until I sat down to write Daughter of Destiny. I was up late one night discussing books with my sister, complaining about the sharp divisions between certain genres. She joked, “Why don’t you write one then?” Blame it on sleep deprivation from just having had my third child, but I decided to take on that challenge.
What is your most current project that is close to publication?
I just released Fated Bonds with InkStained Succubus, which I’m thrilled about. In addition, ProSe Press will be releasing Daughter of Destiny in the next few months. I’m very excited for this release, as it is the first novel I wrote. It looks nothing like that first draft I hammered out. I learned what it meant to be a writer with that manuscript. It’s been eight years since I first sat down with this nebulous idea and this challenge to myself to see if I could write a whole story, so it’s very satisfying to finally see it in print.
Do you have a routine for writing and, if so, what is it?
I can write anywhere when my imagination is fired, which is helpful considering I’ve got a busy schedule and a houseful of not-very-quiet children and critters. I do my best writing when I’ve visualized my scenes first, sort of like a movie playing in my mind. When I’m folding clothes or cooking dinner, I may be playing, rewinding, and revising that scene so that when I finally sit down to write the words flow.
Do you like to read your own work out loud to an audience?
Books, for me, are very intimate experiences. You bond with the characters. You see through their eyes, feel their emotions, and for a time your mind lives in their world. If asked, I would read my work aloud, but in general that isn’t something I like to do because I feel that it intrudes on the intimacy of the experience.
Thank you for stopping by.
You may find out more about H.C. Playa at hcplaya.wordpress.com