Sunday, 5 November 2017

Interview With Author Cassidy Taylor

Today brings an interview with Cassidy Taylor, another one of the authors in the anthology, Mirror & Thorns, which I recently spotlighted. Enjoy.

Interview With Cassidy Taylor

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

I’m a fantasy author who studied English and Creative Writing at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It was there that I found my niche in children’s literature, and won the Bill Hooks Award for Young Adult Fiction in 2007. My first novel, When Rains Fall, is forthcoming in December 2017. The prequel short story, The Dry Season, is available for free on Amazon. I live in beautiful North Carolina with my husband, two kids, two dogs, and one cat who thinks he’s a dog.

Could you tell us a bit about your latest book?

My story, The Life & Death of Cora Svanros, is exclusively available in Mirrors & Thorns: An OWS Ink Anthology. Amazon link:

Cora Svanros, a self-sacrificing slave girl with an iron will, wants nothing more than to protect her little sister. Sold into slavery after the death of their mother, she’s spent the last eight years being tortured by a cruel, young chief with an unusual ability. When a seer tells her that to defeat him, she must pluck three feathers from the Crow of Malos, she knows she must try, even if it means dying to get what she needs.

How long have you been writing, and how many books have you published to date?

I’ve been writing since before I could read. One of my earliest memories is making up a story to the pictures in a Peter Pan picture book when I couldn’t find anyone to read it to me. I have two short stories published in anthologies, and my debut novel is set to release in December 2017. They are all set in the same world and interconnected.

The Dry Season (That Moment When…):
The Life & Death of Cora Svanros (Mirrors & Thorns):

Why did you decide to write in the fantasy genre?

Writing fantasy is both incredibly freeing and incredibly challenging, and I write it for both reasons. I enjoy the challenge of creating an entire world—its history, its religion, its politics—and finding the characters that the world creates. And I enjoy the freedom of being able to explore today’s important themes without the influence of our world’s history and prejudices.

Can you tell us about your writing process? Where do your ideas originate? Do you have a certain writing routine?

My ideas can originate from anywhere. As a writer, I listen and I observe, and I take what I find and ask, “What if…?”
As far as my writing process, I’m a reformed pantser. My first four completed manuscripts were written without any planning whatsoever. After NaNoWriMo in 2016, when I sat back and looked at what I had written and found that I was so disappointed—it didn’t look anything like I had originally intended—I set out to learn as much as I could to improve on my craft. Using a combination of skills I learned from KM Weiland and Libbie Hawker and Joanna Penn, I found a way to plot and plan that works for me. 

What is your greatest challenge as a writer?

Time, time, time! I work full-time and have two young children. It takes real commitment to sit down and write after the kids are in bed, commitment that it took me years to develop and with which I still struggle every day. I’ve found that accountability is super-important to me, and having a community of fellow writers to back me up and encourage me has been invaluable.

What advice would you give beginning writers?

Read widely, and write often. You won’t improve without either of those things.

What do you like to do when you're not writing? Any hobbies?

When I’m not writing or working, I’m reading. My goal is to read fifty books each year, but this includes audiobooks that I listen to during my commute. I also have two active young kids, so I spend a lot of time reading or writing in the gymnastics lobby or during soccer practice. I’ve read 70 books so far this year!

Are you working on another book?

I’m finishing up edits on my first novel, When Rains Fall. It’s the first in a series set in the same world as my short stories. I’m currently seeking ARC readers. If interested, readers can sign up here:

Mirror & Thorns is available at:

About the Author

One of Cassidy Taylor’s earliest memories is flipping through a Peter Pan picture book and making up her own stories to go with the illustrations since she couldn’t read yet. It wasn’t long before she was writing her own stories, the first of which was called The Last Unicorn (not to be confused with the fabulous classic novel of the same name by Peter S. Beagle). As you might have guessed, it didn’t have a happy ending, and she’s been trying to make people cry ever since.
Cassidy attended Young Writers’ conferences as a child, and still has a copy of a poem she wrote about writer’s block that won her a place in one of those conferences, but she won’t show it to you. After completing a degree in English and Creative Writing at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Cassidy went on to get married and raise two wonderful children. Watching her kids grow and discover the magic of reading for themselves has inspired her to return to her own make-believe worlds. 

If you like YA fantasy featuring strong, dangerous women and mysterious magic, and you would like a **free** short story and access to **exclusive content** visit and sign up for Cassidy's Reading Warriors.

You can also find her at:

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