A.E Decker @_BookMistress
I did my first interview EVER on behalf of my favorite kind of mistress… The Book Mistress.
Hope you like it and check out the book, will ya? It’s sounds awesome to me!
The Meddlers of Moonshine
Series * 94,000 words / 344 pages * Fantasy
A.E. Decker hails from Pennsylvania. A former doll-maker and ESL tutor, she earned a master’s degree in history, where she developed a love of turning old stories upside-down to see what fell out of them. This led in turn to the writing of her YA novel, The Falling of the Moon. A graduate of Odyssey 2011, her short fiction has appeared in such venues as Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Fireside Magazine, and in World Weaver Press’s own Specter Spectacular. Like all writers, she is owned by three cats. Come visit her, her cats, and her fur Daleks at wordsmeetworld.com.
1) What inspired you to write books?
Boring car trips! My family took a lot of those when I was a child, and this was the era before handheld devices and other such distractions. I can’t read in cars without developing a headache, and after your father’s yelled at you to be quiet to the twentieth time, it finally sinks in. I told myself stories just to alleviate boredom. I enjoyed them so much, that I developed an ambition to write them down.
2) What do you love about writing in general?
The company I keep. I love my characters, and I love watching them explore new worlds. It probably sounds mad to a non-writer, but I can see them and hear their voices very clearly, and the choices they make frequently surprise me. It can be like having your own, private movie viewing in your head, and at the same time, you control the action. What isn’t wonderful about that?
3) What advice can you give aspiring Authors in your genre?
Write. Seriously, it’s the hardest part. I’d suggest to any author just starting out to write for at least an hour a day for a solid year. You need that kind of discipline; need to know you have it. You also need to know you can finish a story. I often suggest starting with fanfiction. If you can develop a following, it often inspires you to keep going, and that’s half the battle.
4) What’s your favorite part of being an author?
There are a lot of good parts to being an author. Waking up in the middle of the night with a fantastic idea can be both maddening and delightful. Having a character simply stroll into your head and introduce himself makes you laugh and question your sanity at the same time. But perhaps the best of all is when you connect with someone—when someone says they can’t wait to read what you write next. It’s like your dreams have taken wing into another person’s head.
5) What is the worst part about being an author?
Book brain. It’s a nasty, knotted feeling where you know you have to get from plot-point A to plot-point B, and the path between them won’t un-gnarl. It’s not writer’s block, exactly, but it makes my head ache. There’s also the frustration of trying to reach out to readers. There are so many stories out there, you often feel you’re shouting amongst a crowd. All you can do is put forth your best work and try to help readers find it.
6) What do you do for fun?
Videogames. I love the Dark Souls series, and I’m currently trying to follow the titular advice in Don’t Starve, with a modicum of success. I listen to music—I’m currently part of the national Hamilton obsession. I also read a lot, of course, knit, draw, and sew fur Daleks. (Don’t ask—you’ll regret it.)
7) How do you find time to write?
I make time. I write every morning, as soon as my dose of coffee kicks in. If you really want to be a writer, you have to put in the time.
8) What is in your WIP or next book you thought about writing?
My WIP is Into the Moonless Night, Book three of the Moonfall Mayhem series. I fear I left off with a bit of the dreaded cliff-hanger at the end of The Meddlers of Moonshine. Into the Moonless Night continues the story of Ascot and her friends, with Catch as the co-protagonist. It’s a riff on the tropes found in Tolkien, with a smattering of The Hunger Games.
9) Where do you write?
At a desk in my room, with a collection of Daleks set around me, and usually a cat or two sleeping on the bed behind me. I use a laptop for my every day writing, and keep a notebook by my bed for those unexpected flashes of inspiration that occasionally strike.
10) Are you a full time author?
Yes. I’m still working on earning enough to make a living on it, but I have savings and support. I’m very lucky, and I’m not going to waste my good fortune. I have a lot of stories to tell!
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Something is rotten in the town of Widget, and Rags-n-Bones knows it’s all his fault. Ever since he snitched that avocado from Miss Ascot’s pack, things have been going wrong. Armed with a handful of memories he never realized he had, Rags-n-Bones searches for a way to put right whatever he did to Widget in the past. If only he knew what it was! Unfortunately, the only person who seems to have answers is a half-mad youth that only Rags can see.
Widget is also suffering from a ghost infestation that has the townsfolk almost as spooked of outsiders as they are of actual spooks. While Rags-n-Bones seeks answers in the past, Ascot offers the town leaders her service as an exorcist, only to be handed an ultimatum: banish the ghosts or be banished herself!
Who’s meddling with Widget? To catch the culprit, Ascot and Rags-n-Bones must match wits with a shifty sorcerer, a prissy ex-governess, and a troublingly attractive captain before the town consigns itself to the graveyard of history.
There was a hand in the forest, and it held an avocado.
“Miss Ascot bought it for me,” said Rags-n-Bones, clutching it to his chest as he ran. The dead leaves crunched softly underfoot, thick and bouncy as a crispy cloud. “That means it’s not stealing.”
On his shoulder, Nipper squeaked. Being a rat, Nipper was hazy on the concept of “stealing.” Generally, he felt if you could get something in your mouth, it was yours.
Rags-n-Bones wished he were a rat. It would make dealing with guilt much easier. I should never have rummaged through Miss Ascot’s pack, he thought, ducking around a birch. His thumb caressed the avocado’s soft, pebbly skin. If I’d waited, she, or the Captain, or Sir Dmitri, or the Mighty Terror from the Deepest Shadows would’ve awakened and given it to me. He leaped over a log, mouth watering in anticipation of the avocado’s rich, buttery flavor. I should go back right now and—
Squeak? Nipper stuck his nose in Rags-n-Bones’ ear impatiently.
Rags-n-Bones gave up. He’d take whatever punishment arrived later. Right now, the torment of not eating the avocado was too great to bear. “There’s a grove up ahead,” he replied. “Around that cone-shaped boulder. We’ll eat it there.” Avocados required privacy for proper consumption.
How could you possibly know there’s a grove ahead? asked a small part of his brain not drunk on avocado-lust. You’ve never been here before.
He shrugged. Ahead just seemed like a convenient place for a grove. A small circle of beech trees, with an old oak smack in the center, its gnarled, moss-covered roots gripping the hummock it sat atop like an old man clutching a tea cake.
A foot skidded out from under him as he rounded the boulder, kicking up a trail of wet leaves and the smell of tannin. That’s a lot of detail for a mere hunch. Why, you can visualize the oak, can’t you? That thick, knobby trunk. Those bare, crooked branches. And carved into the bark—
Six feet into the grove, Rags-n-Bones stumbled to a halt and stared vacantly at a patch of earth. Something was very wrong. Was he being watched?
He whimpered. He was being watched. A disapproving stare pressed almost tangibly on the top of his bowed head. Branches swayed creakily overhead. He watched the wind skitter a fallen acorn across the carpet of leaves.
Squeak? Nipper scrabbled at his cheek.
I have to do it. Slowly, Rags-n-Bones lifted his gaze to meet the watcher’s.
The avocado hit the leaves with a soft crunch as his fingers abruptly slackened. Punishment had arrived sooner than expected.