Today I have the pleasure of having author Ashley Townsend pop over for a visit. Grab a cup of your chosen beverage – be it tea, coffee or something nice and cool – and settle down to a chat with Ashley, who is the author of Rising Shadows, and its sequel, Chasing Shadows.
I really have a heart for YA, because I love reading well-designed and -plotted books that feel relatable, and I really enjoy connecting with younger readers through my own writing as I (try to) provide that same engaging and emotional rollercoaster that I myself am drawn to. Also, I really love writing fantasy, because the world is your oyster, and reality has no limitations on what you can create.
Do you have a scheduled time to write?
I try to do a little writing every day, which is the best advice I can give to budding writers. Whether it turns into a full-blown chapter or two, a couple of pages, or just some plot ideas scribbled on note cards, I try to make time every day to write. Just being in the habit of writing and pushing through scenes has been a wonderful tool and has helped me in situations where writer’s block might try to hinder my progress.
Of all of the characters you have written, which is your favorite and can you give me three key words to describe them?
😦 Why must you make me choose?! I honestly adore all of my characters, and everyone knows I am in love with Will Taylor *swoons* and adore Sarah’s relatability and kind heart. But if I had to choose, I’d have to say that the character I always look forward to writing about is Damien Lisandro. He was supposed to have a brief appearance in “Chasing Shadows,” and then I made an oopsie and fell in love with my own character. Author No-No #1. The best way to describe Damien is broken, gentle, and lost. He is like this sad little puppy that I just want to adopt and make him feel better.
Do you find listening to music helps you write, and if so, what sort?
I have tons of playlists for different moods in a story. I love anything soft for more of the romantic interlude scenes, and then when I write instances where there is hand-to-hand combat or arrows flying or swordplay, then I really enjoying listening to trailer music or soundtrack scores. I love music, but I get too distracted by the lyrics if I’m in the middle of a scene that requires intense concentration.
All right, I’ve just given you an airplane ticket, where would you go?
Neverland because my next series is a take on “Pirates of the Caribbean” meets Neverland. But I suppose if fairytale lands are out of the question (humph), then I would have to visit Ireland. It has been a goal of mine for years to live in a cottage in Ireland and just write for the remainder of my days beside bubbling brooks and great rolling hills. So dreamy! (and those accents!)
Pen upon paper or fingers tapping away at keyboard?
My mind is usually moving too fast for me to use paper, and then I just get frustrated because it takes too long. Ah, the impatience of youth! I typically prefer to use my laptop because it’s faster, but I always have paper on-hand in case inspiration strikes.
A new piece of technology has been invented. It is a Writer’s Aid and can eliminate the trickiest of areas. Where would you use it in your writing process?
Ugh. Editing. I adore the creative process and everything about it, but having to meticulously comb over my manuscript to see what I did wrong is painful. I’d much rather be writing my next series than catching grammar errors!
Thank you, Ashley, for stopping by and all the very best for your future endeavors. I’m off to hunt down someone to invent a Writer’s Aid for the both of us … : )