Many of us spend most of our lives searching for inspiration. We seek out inspiration from family, friends and at times, from people that we just meet. Have you ever had the opportunity to talk to someone that was full of life and ready to conquer the world? Has someone ever made you look deep within yourself to want to be something more? Has someone ever made you re-think your goals and ambitions that have been locked away? Well, I can honestly say that the young and upcoming horror author, Kya Aliana, does just that!
Kya is a twenty year old Young Adult/Paranormal/Supernatural/Horror author who recently released her first published book Bloodborne. Kya has turned her reading and writing addiction into a full blown, passionate career. Kya has had an amazing support system over the years that has allowed her to grow into a exceptional author. Kya and her husband, Zariel, encourage each other to follow their dreams everyday. The two continue to support, encourage and inspire one another to grow and achieve everything that they set out to do.
Bloodborne follows Hailey McCawl, who returns home from college with some terrible news. She is not going to finish college; she is dropping out. Hailey is unable to rekindle the once healthy relationship she had with her parents. The only family member that she continues to bond with and seek comfort in is her little brother, Christopher. As everything in Hailey’s life is upheaved, she now has the undaunting task of discovering what she has become and how she must adapt to her new lifestyle.
Kya’s unique storytelling, character development and descriptive details lured me in. Kya is a very developed author for her age, and the book speaks for itself. I was able to gain that glorious feeling of anticipation I once had while being enwrapped in novels by such authors as R. L Stein.
iHorror has an exclusive interview with Kya Aliana, so sit back, relax, and “Say Goodbye to Your Reflection,” as we read her inspiring-fun story.
iHorror: Can you tell your current fans and future fans a little about yourself?
Kya Aliana: Certainly! 🙂 I’m Kya Aliana, a twenty year old YA/Paranormal/Supernatural/Horror author. I wrote my first full-length novel (85,000 words) at thirteen years old. It’s EXTREMELY bad and still unpublished. It’s poorly written, but it got me started and for that I’m grateful. Thankfully, since then I have constantly worked on improving my craft. I am always eager to learn more about the many aspects of writing and story telling. I’m almost always taking a class or workshop to help me to improve my skills and think about my stories on a broad level. I read my first Stephen King book (Salem’s Lot) at thirteen and I absolutely loved the way it made me feel (sweaty palms, racing heart, wide eyes, unable to sleep). I knew right then and there that I would write horror fiction. So I started and I never looked back. It’s what I love to do – it’s my passion in life and I will never stop working hard and writing books. Hell, I couldn’t stop if I tried!
So, there’s the horror side. Where does the YA come from? Well, I started writing as a teenager. I knew that I couldn’t write from an adult perspective, so it made sense to try and click with teens. I have always been an avid reader and I love how the YA genre speaks to me and how I can almost always relate to it. I wanted to create books that could not only scare people, but make them connect with the characters as well. I knew that I could best do this from a teenager perspective with teenager characters. While the genre is definitely YA bordering on NA (New Adult since my main character in Vampiress: Bloodborne is 21), I’ve been told that readers of all ages like it and can relate to the characters. Nothing makes me happier and feel more accomplished! 😀
iH: What inspired you to write Bloodborne? Is your character Hailey based on anyone?
KA: I initially wrote Bloodborne when I was fourteen. It was the second book I wrote. Since then, it has undergone countless rewrites and edits. The story and characters are very different from the beginning; it’s almost as if I’ve grown with them over the past six years. I started writing it for my little sister, Lexi, and little brother, Kinden. Lexi is dyslexic and was having trouble getting in to reading. So I thought I would create a story just for her – it worked! I wrote it chapter by chapter and read it to her each night and now she’s hooked on reading and audio books. I also needed an outlet to connect with my little brother, so I created Hailey’s little brother, Christopher, and as I wrote it chapter by chapter and read it to both Lexi and Kinden, Kinden helped me sculpt Chris and through the characters we actually bonded a lot. Now, Hailey and Christopher are very different from Kinden and I, but it offered a brother/sister outlet to talk about things and while we figured out how to develop the character’s relationship, our relationship developed as well.
After Bloodborne, I went on to write and self-publish quite a few novels. Writing Bloodborne started as a fun story for my little siblings, but as I wrote it I fell in love with writing and I knew I needed to pursue it as my career. It’s a passion that runs deep in my veins… Shoot, it’s probably a borderline addiction. I knew I couldn’t stop, so I might as well try to get published. As I wrote and self-published my other novels, I continued to work on Bloodborne. I took classes to improve my writing and foreshadowing, I heavily researched vampires from all around the world and the various folklore, and I polished, polished, polished! I want Vampiress: Bloodborne to shine (not sparkle) in the vampire genre, so I knew I had to make it different. I bring back some old myths, new myths, and different types of vampires from all around the world. I worked hard on it and it got picked up by Winlock Press – as did my other previously self-published books (they will soon be re-released with previously unpublished material). It’s been a wild and awesome ride and I’m so happy to be where I am today with not only the Vampiress Thrillogy, but my other books as well.
iH: What books have been the most influential in your life?
KA: The top 2 books that come to mind are S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders and Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot. The Outsiders was particularly inspiring to me not only because of the realistic characters and story, but because I found out that S.E. Hinton wrote it when she was only sixteen years old! I was amazed and thrilled. I then realized that I didn’t have to wait to grow up to become an author (And Thank God for that because I don’t think I will ever grow up haha). So, I started taking writing seriously and studying it. If she could write a book at sixteen, then what was stopping me? Nothing!
Salem’s Lot was particularly influential because it was not only my first Stephen King book, but it was truly my first horror book (aside from the massive piles of Goosebumps books that I devoured and laughed off because they never really scared me). I loved the way reading King’s book made me feel – it was so different than how other authors/genres/books I’d read. I actually read Salem’s Lot on a camping trip which made it even more terrifying! It was perfect. I fell in love with his style, the genre, and soon I would read as many King books as I could get my hands on. I knew this was the genre for me, all I had to do was start writing.
iH: Do you see writing as a career?
KA: Absolutely! It’s my passion and what I will absolutely love to do for the rest of my life. I’m working hard to build up my presences, my books, my skills, and my name. I’m doing my best to put myself out there as much as I can in high hopes that people take a chance on reading my books and love them. As far as careers go, there is nothing I would love more than to be a professional and successful author and I will stop at nothing to get there.
iH: Bloodborne was well constructed and full of twists, turns, and surprises, what was the most challenging part in constructing this book?
KA: Thank you! I love coming up with twists and turns, but surprisingly enough I owe it all to my characters. Sometimes they just take control and it surprises even me. The hardest part was going back through and foreshadowing all the surprises. I don’t want readers to see it coming, but I know that it needs to all make sense. It’s actually the hardest part of writing the second book as well. By the end of the first book, you’re left with a sort-of cliff hanger and a lot of questions, so I’m doing my best to go through and address each one of those while still keeping the pace and twists in the second book as well. Not to mention I have to think about building up to the catharsis of the third and final installment.
iH: Bloodborne is the first book in a trilogy. Any other ideas or projects in the works after the release of your next two books?
KA: I have tons of ideas and projects in the works. The problem isn’t a lack of book ideas and outlines, the challenge is to pick which one to go with next. I am also re-writing and extending my Sly Darkness series to be re-released with previously unpublished material through Winlock Press. After Vampiress, and Sly Darkness, I have a zombie series in the works, I also have a werewolf series that takes place in the mid-1800s that I am plotting. I have a few stand-alone books in mind as well. I suppose I will follow my heart and work on whatever I’m inspired to after Winlock releases all the books I’m contracted for (eleven total, in case anybody is wondering). I also have this idea for a spin-off trilogy about Christopher (from Vampiress) all grown up, but I haven’t decided whether or not I should actually write it yet.
iH: Will you continue to work with Winlock press as your publishing company?
KA: I can say with 100% full confidence – YES! If things keep going like they are, Winlock Press is sure to make it big! I love everybody I work with – my editor, my marketer, and fellow authors! I mean, we are a team and we’re a great one. I have complete faith in Winlock Press. Not to sound conceded but I am pretty damn determined to make it and I wouldn’t have signed with them if I didn’t think they would be a success. Winlock has a great and very professional team and I honestly feel so lucky to be with them.
iH: It is amazing you are so young and you are a published author. Has your age helped or worked against you as a new author?
KA: There have been instances where it helps, instances where it hindered, and instances where it made absolutely no difference at all. I would say it helps me stand out a lot – people are often impressed and they are more willing to share my posts, spread the word, interview me for their blogs, and find out more about me. This is all great! However, I notice that while they are very curious to learn about me and my journey, they are hesitant to actually buy my book and read it. I think they worry about it not being any good because I’m so young and they assume my writing is unrefined. Now, I’m sure that in some ways that can be very true. I know that while I have improved a lot and worked really hard since I first started writing, I still have a very long way to go until I am at the level I wish to be. However, those who do read the book almost always leave a good review and say that they were impressed with my writing style. I also love it when those who are less impressed come to me with constructive criticism – I try to learn from everything and listen to all feedback. I am always striving to improve; it takes the good reviews and the constructive ones to keep me on the right path. Those who have been with me since the beginning and read my writing all the way through say that I improve with each book which makes me feel pretty accomplished. After all, that’s one of my main goals: to continue to get better and better with each book regardless of my age.
Thank you Kya !
Continue to check out iHorror.com for more exclusive stories as we follow Kya on her journey, she has much to offer us!
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