There is nothing better than discovering someone who wrote a great book also has an exceptional personality as well! See for yourself.
I love Blood and Water! What was the inspiration behind it?
Thank you! There isn’t one thing that inspired it more than anything else. Mostly, I studied abroad in London for a semester and loved it there, so I worked with that. With all the post-apocalyptic fiction and film out lately, I also wondered what it would be like to do something in that same vein that focused more on the characters and their reactions to disaster, rather than on the disaster itself.
When did you begin writing?
I’ve honestly been writing for as long as I can remember. I think I was five when I wrote my first short story. Of course, I didn’t really attempt a novel until high school. It took me a few years to get it right. There are a lot of manuscripts I’ve written that won’t see the light of day.
Do you have any writing rituals or routines?
I make a playlist for each WIP, and I have to start that up every day when I sit down to write. I also have to block all my access to distracting websites with a program called Freedom, otherwise I’d never get anything done. And I’m not sure if this is relevant, but I try to write in fullscreen mode as much as I can in order to stay focused.
Do you have any writing influences; places, other writers?
So many things! I feel like I’m inspired a little bit by every place I visit, especially cities. There’s something about the hustle and bustle of downtown life that really gets under my skin. I love it! Writer-wise, I look up to a host of classic and contemporary writers, including George Orwell, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Oscar Wilde, Ksenia Anske, Paula Hawkins, Stephen King, and Gillian Flynn.
What are your publishing and/or writing goals for 2016?
My biggest goal at the moment is to publish my novel Reflections. Ideally, I want to publish two books this year, but I’d be content with just one if it means not stressing myself out. Other than that, I want to connect more with readers, write something every day, and do more interviews (like this one). Oh, and maybe teach some kind of online class or webinar!
Can you share anything with us about your current work in progress, Reflections?
Sure thing! It’s a YA urban fantasy novel that’s a murder mystery, but with shapeshifters. It’s a different take on overcoming trauma, self-image, and finding inner strength, and I’m having a lot of fun writing it.
How do you deal with writers block?
I never used to outline, but lately, I’ve made sure to lay out signposts (big scenes that the book needs) to guide me while I work. That cuts down a lot on the writer’s block—knowing where I need to go next. Otherwise, I just keep going. Even if I’m writing garbage, the only way to finish is to keep moving forward.
If you could live any part of your life again, what would you change and why?
High school. Like many others, I spent the majority of my teenage years trying to fit in and hating myself for not being like everyone else. There are a lot of things I gave up on because they weren’t “cool.” But then again, I don’t think you could pay me enough to willingly go back to being a teenager. It was hard enough the first time.
Tell us something about yourself we might not already know.
I’ve read The Great Gatsby thirty-six times.
Advice for aspiring authors?
Grow a thick skin, and don’t take anything personally. You’ll hear from a lot of critics, and it’s important to be able to handle them without losing your sanity. If you really love the work and you love what you’re writing, what they say won’t hold much weight, anyway.
Let’s play This or That
Cake or Ice-cream? Cake
Winter or Summer? Winter
Beach or Forest? Forest
Airplane or Car? Car
Paperback or eBook? Paperback
Cat or Dog? Both!
Country or City? City
Coffee or Tea? Tea
Late nights or Early mornings? Early mornings
Small talk or Deep and meaningful? Deep and meaningful
Briana is also an editor with reasonable rates so get in touch with her if you're looking for an editor or you know, just because she's lovely.
Where you can find Briana:
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"Light emanated from underneath the bathroom door. Jay took a step forward.
Squish. He froze.
What the hell had he stepped on? Jay looked down. Blood pooled dark and thick on the carpet at his feet. It was similar in texture to the blood in the sink.
There was a trail leading from it to the bathroom. He raised the knife, stepped forward, and opened the bathroom door.
His older sister Maia hunched over the white sink, retching. A string of saliva stretched from her mouth.
She was shaking.
When she turned to face Jay, she had blood on her chin.
He dropped the knife. It clattered against the tile. “Maia? What's going on?” “Jay,” she said. “Thank God you're home now.”
“How did you get in here?”
“You left your door unlocked.” She wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. “I didn't know where else to go. I think it's happening.”
Jay's stomach lurched. “How long?” “A week ago.” She looked into the sink. “I'm sorry. I should have called you.”
Jay leaned against the wall. His shoulders slumped.
One week. Their parents had been dead in four. The less he thought about the time frame, the better.
“Why didn't you tell me when the symptoms started?”
“I don't know,” she said. “I didn't want to scare you.”
Tears ran down her face, and her lower lip trembled. Her eyes were bloodshot with dark circles pillowed beneath them. Blood spattered her shirt.
“Jesus,” Jay said. “You need to get help.”
Maia coughed and spit something else into the sink. She wiped her mouth again. “There's no one in London.”
“We'll go somewhere else, then. We'll find you a doctor.”
Jay tried to think of some lead he hadn't followed yet. He'd been all over London in search of a cure. Nothing had turned up. He was running out of time—for himself and for Maia.
“It doesn't matter,” she said.
“Of course it does,” Jay answered.
Maia turned on the tap, cupped water in her hands, and splashed it on her face. Some of it dripped off her chin and landed on her chest. “I'm so glad you're immune to this.”
“Yeah,” Jay said, “me, too.” He'd been sick for three weeks.
She would never find out."
© Briana Morgan
If you are interested in an interview on my blog, please get in touch over social media or shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.