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April Spotlight on Debut Author Chaeya ( Plus Contest)

This month's spotlight is dedicated to a wonderful new versatile author coming up with her debut novel entitled, Srae Iss-Ka-Mala. Chaeya is an author and a fan of science fiction and fantasy. She loves theorizing about science and theories among speak a number of different languages and praciting her skills at singing and songwriting.  She has a wonderful array of hobbies including gardening, hanging out at Renaissance Faires and making handmade beauty products for her awesome company Danaomi Scents. With the release of her novel based in speculative fiction, she'll be adding published author to her roster of talents.

Chaeya stopped by to share info about her writing process and upcoming book!

Check out the full Q & A interview and links to check out her work after the jump.

When did you decide you wanted to be a writer?

Chaeya: Right around the same time I decided to quit being a writer. It’s like a which came first question, the “chicken or the egg.”

Who is your target audience?

Chaeya: People who find themselves wandering around the entire bookstore looking for something. They go from the Romance aisle to the Science Fiction aisle to General Fiction and back because they don’t know where to find a book that spans across different genres.

Who would you say has influenced you the most?

Chaeya: Anne Rice.

What would you say are the biggest challenges that you face?

Chaeya: Being a self-published writer. There are people who still have a prejudice towards self-published authors. I’ve chosen to self publish because I believe I’m too difficult to fit inside anyone’s box. Plus, my word count is too high for most of the e-publishers. My first novel turned out being around 125,000 and most publishers don’t want new writers to write over 100,000. I find putting rules on people simply because they’re a new writer strange, especially since most of the fantasy books I read are around the same word count. Then there’s that “do-it-yourself” aspect to me. I figured out how to print the book and bind it myself and offer the book for much less than going through the main self publishing networks. I also plan on offering it as an e-published novel as well. It’s something about doing things myself which makes it more meaningful. I’m the owner of a handmade beauty business and I’m always putting things together, so I don’t see self-publishing as negative as many people do. It may not garner me Nora Roberts money, but I didn’t get into writing for the money or the prestige. I simply do the things I love to do.

 How do you deal with these challenges?

Chaeya: I try not to look at it as being an insurmountable problem. With maturity, I’ve learned to take baby steps. I think if I just write the books and put them out there, slowly I may find myself with a readership.

How many books have you written so far?

Chaeya: I’ve finished one. My debut novel, “Srae Iss-Ka-Mala” will be published this summer with my company, Electric Gentlemen Publishing. It’s about a middle aged woman whose life hasn’t panned out as she expected. She’s a failed musician and in love with a man who lives only in her dreams. A fateful meeting on the side of road leads her to another planet and a second chance to accomplish her goal as a musician and to finally meet the man who has haunted her dreams.

Do you write everyday? How much time do you spend on your writing?

Chaeya: No. I find that I have to walk away from it from time to time.

Which aspects of the work that you put into the book did you find most difficult?

Chaeya: Following the rules of fiction writing. My husband seems to think writing is easy. One just sits down and write a story. You correct all the misspelled words then you’re done. He doesn’t understand why it took me so long to get past the edit stage. Just because a person knows good grammar and can speak it, doesn’t mean they can write it. Many people think fiction writing and everyday business writing is the same. There are many rules involved in fiction that don’t exist in the everyday business world. I find readers of fiction much less forgiving whereas in the business world where I operate, people don’t care if you write a paragraph-long sentence or use misplaced punctuation. As long as the words are spelled correctly, that’s all there is to it.

Another difficult aspect to writing is deciding what scenes are significant to the story and which scenes simply weight it down. I believe there’s no sure way to do this because it really does come down to opinion. However, I cut a number of scenes from my book because I thought readers might have been bogged down with too much information. I find with the Romance genre, most people just want facts significant to the love story. In Science Fiction/Fantasy, the love story is secondary and more emphasis is placed on world building. I tried to stay in the middle.

Which did you enjoy most?

Chaeya: The fantasy. I love creating worlds from scratch. I found that the wormhole travel I wrote into Srae was corroborated by my favorite physicist, Kaku Michio, and others in a Science Channel show discussing time travel. I tried not to go off on the deep end with the technology so as to turn some people off, but what I did put in, I explained as simply as I could.

What would you say has been your most significant achievement as a writer?

Chaeya: Finishing my first book. I say this is another hard aspect to writing. When I first began writing, I would poop out in the middle of my stories and start writing something else. Although my other story, “The Guardian of Wands” was further along than “Srae”, I chose to start my career off with the hardest story. Srae was just a couple of chapters and I didn’t like what I had written. It would have taken a dive like my other stories. I also took like six months off and gorged myself on books about fiction writing and updated my grammar. I even took some online workshops for self-editing. I used to look at my writing and think no one would possibly want to read it. It read so amateurish, but now when I look at my writing, I can see how much I’ve grown. Still, I don’t think I’ll ever get to the point where I stop critiquing myself. I’m always researching grammar rules.

Learn more about Chaeya and her works on the web and don't forget to check out her upcoming debut novel Srae Iss-Ka-Mala coming soon!

Chaeya is giving away a $25 Gift Card to Danaomi Scents. To check out what Danaomi Scents has to offer click here: and add a comment below to be entered!


IR LOVER said…
Hey Chaeya!

Great interview! Can't wait for your book to hit the shelves and BIG CONGRATES on your first novel!

Stephanie Williams
Dyanne said…

What a great interview. I didn't know you were actually going to bind the book yourself. WOW!! you're definitely a woman of many talents. I applaud you.

Hey, it's not just your husband, everyone thinks it's easy to write and have no idea that there are certain rules or just plain dislikes that a writer has to observe. Good going, Chaeya.

A.M. Wells said…
What an insightful interview, Chaeya.

Congratulations and I wish you all the best on your debut release.

Elise Logan said…

Wonderful interview. No way am I talented enough to do the binding and stuff myself. Good for you!
Chaeya said…
Thanks all. As some of you know, I wavered back and forth about self-publishing.

@Elise, binding is very easy. I watched some how it's done on You Tube and you can make a book jig yourself. Print the pages up on a high quality laser printer and get the covers professionally printed. I found doing it this way, I can print copies as I need them and can charge less than if I did it through a POD company.
cinquetta said…
Wow Chaeya congratulation!!! You go girl your first book publish. WOW! Nice interview and very insightful....YEAH!!!!!!!
Anonymous said…
Chaeya, really an informative interview. I think interviews like this help others with the dream to write their own novel. Congratulations on finishing your novel and this interview.

While I'm self-publishing my novel, I don't think I can bind it.

Nice going.
Naran Leslie said…
What an interesting interview. It gives pause to self publishing and I applaud your courage to promote yourself.
Melanie said…
Great interview and congrats on your debut release! :)
Tawania said…
Great interview & congrats on your release! I look forward to your book when it comes out this summer.

kimmyl said…
Hi Chaeya! Great interview. I have can't wait to read your book, it sounds fantastic. I agree with you on the writing. I'm taking critical thinking and eng comp. It is so hard to come up with ideas. I don't think anyone realizes just how much work goes into your books.
i love meetin new author and stalking , uh i mean following them from then on, fromthe first book on. i rememeber sylvia day first and follwoed her ever since
Chaeya said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chaeya said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chaeya said…
Thanks all for all your comments, they truly warmed my heart!

I put all your names in my old sugar jar and for the $25 gift card to Danaomi Scents:

Naran Leslie!

Naran, I attempted to contact you, but I cannot find an email address or any other contact information. If someone knows her, can they please let her know she won. I will leave it open for five days; otherwise, I will have to draw another name. Thanks!

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