Writer Wednesdays to discover new authors.
We have Creative Connections to explore things beyond books.
But what about people whom I’ve already interviewed. People I care about and whose work I love…
Enter the Author’s Kitchen
Now why don’t we start off with a bang by welcoming A.I. Winters back to the blog.
Author of the Strange Luck series which I read in full, Winters creates magical, mystical, and slightly mean worlds…and now she’s taking things up a notch, because why not.
Welcome back to the blog, Amie. So happy to have you here and to start things off, why don’t you tell us of what you’ve published and how you’ve shifted from dark YA to horror/mystery for your latest release, Summoner of Sleep.
Thanks for having me back, JD! Yes, I started out writing YA Fantasy and have published three award-winning books in that series (Strange Luck, The Nightmare Birds, and A Darling Secret). It was a lot of fun to write in that genre, but after taking some time off to reflect I decided to try something completely different —horror.
Just from the cover, you can see you’re going way darker. What prompted this shift?
I’ve always been a HUGE horror fan and like to write what I would read. I’ve been heavily influenced by H.P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, and Clive Barker and wanted to take a crack at something not only different, but a lot darker.
The YA and Horror communities are definitely supportive though it’s a different vibe and actually, my experience is that horror authors are some of the kindest people I’ve met. What has the experience been like for you?
There’s definitely a misconception about horror authors. People think they are these weird, ominous people that never interact. It’s quite the contrary. Everyone has been incredibly supportive and enthusiastic. I’ve made a lot of amazing friends in the community and it’s just the beginning.
Since this is the Author’s Kitchen, I have to ask, what are some things in your literary spice rack that’s unique to you, what are some go-to things you love to explore and what have you kept from your previous approach to writing?
I always like to explore the human psyche and dreams accompanied by some sort of dark magic. Summoner of Sleep has much darker concepts and definitely more gory descriptions.
Now that you’ve finished and published Summoner of Sleep, what’s next for you beyond a well-earned break?
I just started working on a new horror novel this week. I’m working with a very loose concept and title right now, but hope to start sharing details about the book soon.
I know that beyond reading, you’re a big fan of music. When Summoner of Sleep is picked up for a movie, what 5 artists/bands NEED to be on the soundtrack and why?
If you’ve read or watched any of my other interviews you know that I’m a big metalhead so I’m going to have to stick to that genre. My favorite black metal band that was inspired by the Lord of the Rings is called Summoning. They have a very epic, fantasy sound. Then, I’d say Type of Negative and probably Goblin for some atmosphere (think the original Suspiria). I’ll need to think on the other two…
Apart from writing, I also know you’re into martial arts. Can you tell us, which one you practice and how has martial arts influenced your writing if in any way?
Yes, I’ve been practicing Jiu-Jitsu for nearly two years and love it. It’s a great stress release when I need a break from writing and a great way to exercise your mind, body, and spirit. I think it’s also helped me in some regard to understand and write fight scenes. I can’t remember what my life was like before Jiu-Jitsu and I’m truly grateful that I found this practice.
From what I’ve seen, there have been plenty of comparisons to Lovecraft with your latest release. What aspect does that hone in on? The occult? Mood? Tempo? Or just writing something that’ll wake you up in the middle of the night?
Yes, which is such an honor for me since he’s my literary idol. I think it’s a little bit of everything (occult, mood, tempo, tone, etc.). I’ve been reading Lovecraft for so long and he’s had a major influence on me, so I really attempted to capture that essence, but in a contemporary form.
You are contacted by a spirit’s company that wants to do something based on your novel. What is the alcohol, the APV volume, and what goes into a Bloody Winters? (Cocktail name courtesy of moi, if you want to change it, go for it)
Ha ha. I love the name Bloody Winters! Vodka is my drink of choice and I recently discovered there’s a black vodka, so I’d go with that and call it something like Frozen Winters or Black Winters. Highest APV volume allowed without choking.
Gahahahaha here’s to enjoying a tipple and no choking. Ah that was good. And now all that is left is to roll that crimson carpet so you can tell us where more people can connect with you.
You can learn more about me and my books at aiwinters.com.
Follow me here:
Amazon Author Central: https://www.amazon.com/A-I-Winters/e/B00XZ88V5A?ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1&qid=1620073015&sr=8-1
Thank you so much for having my, JD! I wish you the best of luck with your books and I can’t wait to check out your latest. Thanks again. 😊
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There you have it, folks. The first visit into the Author’s Kitchen. Feel free to give Madame Winters a follow and check out her new book, Summoner of Sleep.
Good friend, good people, great writer. Til next we meet in words, dear frands.
Peace, love, and maki rolls