Interview With Author Tiara J. Brown
Looking for something new and magical to read? Tiara J. Brown’s debut, The Tales of Alexandria Stecklar: The Locket, comes out this month and is full of secret magic and adventure. I recently got to chat with Tiara about her book and her journey writing and publishing it.
What is the premise of The Tales of Alexandria Stecklar: The Locket?
The Tales of Alexandria Stecklar: The Locket is a young adult, fantasy novel about a telekinetic, fifteen-year-old girl named Alex that lives underground with her family. However, secrets unfold as she finds herself thrusted from her home and into a foreign world plagued by war between psychics, like herself and magical sorcerers. Forced to hide her identity, Alex must find a way home before someone else gets to her first.
What was your process for writing The Locket?
It was a pretty long process. I originally thought of the premise of The Locket when I was fourteen-years-old and I even tried to write it back then. I grew up reading a lot of fantasy books including Harry Potter, Ella Enchanted, Jeremy Thatcher: The Dragon Hatcher, and more which still influences my writing, today. This version of the book was me re-writing it as an adult, which took about six to seven years. I used what I wrote when I was fourteen as a skeleton and fleshed out the story by expanding the plot, adding/changing scenes, and providing more character depth/development. I am also the type of writer that bounces around to different sections or parts of the story, instead of writing in chronological order. And then I stitch everything together. Overall, the process was very exciting to watch my book come to life.
What was the path for publishing The Locket?
I am a self-published author. Originally, I did want to pursue the traditional publishing route. I researched agencies and publishers and sent out many query letters. However, nothing seemed to catch on. Thus, I had to make a decision on whether I wanted to continue pursuing the traditional route or try the self-publishing route. I chose to self-publish. I put aside money each month in order to save money to pay for editors, cover design artists, book formatting, etc. Although, at times it was a bit scary and I didn't always feel like I knew what I was doing, it was a rewarding route in terms of having full creative control over my work. I had to plan, budget, and have faith. I've wanted to be an author since I was child and I have prayed about it numerous times. I jumped into self-publishing, but the Good Lord caught me.
Your book comes out this month! Any exciting book launch plans?
Yes! My book comes out this month. I am very excited. Unfortunately, no book launch plans, though. Self-publishing was a new and crazy adventure in itself. I do plan to celebrate; just not sure how, yet. However, now that I have gone through the process of self-publishing a novel, I am sure that for Book 2 (the sequel) I will definitely plan to have more book launching plans.
What’s a piece of advice you’d give to aspiring authors?
Advice that I would give to aspiring writers is to stay committed and finish the book. Don't worry about writing the perfect novel or becoming the next Charles Dickson or Jane Austen. That will come with time. The more you write, the better that you will get. But you won't get there unless you finish the book. Writing takes time and requires a dedicated schedule. Be patient. Don't get discouraged. Find a writing schedule that works for you and your life that you can stick to. The hardest part is finishing the novel. That in itself, whether published or not published is a major accomplishment. Additionally, as a bonus piece of advice I would also say, don't forget to live life. Whether conscious or subconscious, our experiences always find a way to seep into our writing. Embrace the thrills, the heartbreak, and the ups and downs. Talk to different people and learn about different points of views and stages of life. You will be able to relate it to your characters and thus, become a better writer.
Where can people get your book?
The Tales of Alexandria Stecklar: The Locket is currently available for pre-order and will be available in a variety of formats on February 28th anywhere books are sold online including, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Walmart, Applebooks, and more.
Where’s the best place to follow you?
The best place to follow me is on Instagram @tiarajoybrown. There, I post all of my book updates and little tidbits about my life's adventures, including my hobbies and travel. But, you can also find updates of my book (including a sneak peak of the prologue) by subscribing to my website: www.tiarajbrown.com or by following me @TiaraJBrown on Facebook.