Last update: November 10th, 2018
Welcome to my FAQ page! We've divided it in sections so you could find the information you seek easily. But if you do have a question that did not get answered here, feel free to contact me and I'll do my best to reply in a timely manner! ^_^
Have you always known you wanted to be an author?
More or less. I've always loved to read and write, but what I really wanted to be when I was younger was a singer. I still love to sing, but life has put me on the path of words and it's a road I still enjoy traveling. :)
How long have you been writing?
Gosh, decades! Does that make me sound old? (laughs) Honestly, I'm hardly pressed to remember a time when I wasn't writing. I still have journals from when I entered kindergarten! Then, journals turned into dark poetry when my parents divorced, my grandfather died and I hit puberty; not a fun period of my life. After that came fanfictions (Final Fantasy VII fanfics for the most part) and short stories. Then I moved on to novels. :) All in all, I think I've been writing seriously (with publication in mind) since 1998.
What is your literary path like?
I wrote my very first novel at 16 (was never published and never will be!), a second one at 18 (not published either), and about fifty or sixty short stories between that and my third novel. Some short stories were even published in e-zines in 2007 and 2009! Happy!! ^_^
But my first real, traditional publication was in 2012; a book about a spunky redhead who wanted to become a dragon rider, a career forbidden to women. It turned into a trilogy that was entirely published in 2012 (the books were written between 2009 and 2011.) It's all in French and unavailable now, but a fourth novel for that series has been written and I'm actively looking to resubmit it somewhere else.
What about your English career?
After six years and as many novels traditionally published in French, I still felt like I needed more. I wanted to reach more readers, have more control over my stories and even the looks of my books. I was reading Sarra Cannon's blog for indies when it hit me: I could be an indie writer in English! I had some knowledge about the craft now and English was spoken at home (it had been years since I'd last watched a movie dubbed in French or read a book in French for that matter.) So, I spent the better part of two years learning to be a self-published author. I attended webinars, read books and blogs and articles, researched the industry, worked a branding.
In 2016, I published The Lighthouse Keeper under the pen name Valerie L. Ravenscroft, but I still couldn't own that identity. The book was removed from sale when the platform I was using (Pronoun) closed (which was okay, I was just testing the water with it anyway.) And I took another two years to fine-tune the whole self-published thing (brand, goals, etc.).
Finally, during NaNoWriMo 2018, I heeded someone's advice who said that "if you have a story inhabiting you for a while, a story that means a lot to you (what I call a magnum opus), you shouldn't wait until you're a better writer to write it. Do it now!"
So, I did.
And that's how the first book of the Fairefolk series came into this world. ^_^
ABOUT MY BOOKS
— The Fairefolk Series —
How many books will the Fairefolk series have?
At the present, I honestly have no idea. I haven't planned beyond book 3, but I love the universe so much, I don't see myself stopping any time soon. The series might end up on the back burner for a while as I brainstorm new paths and ideas, but I know I'll return to it. Sign up for my newsletter or visit the News page to hear all about it!
When is book 2 coming out?
Right now, book 2 is still in the editing process. It will be out before the year is done, that I know for sure, but as far as a concrete date, I don't want to give any at the moment so not to disappoint anyone. But I can tell you we're all doing our best to release the book as soon as possible! Once again, if you wish to be notified when I have a date, sign up for my newsletter or check the News page regularly!
When is book 3 coming out?
At the moment, I have no date for book 3 but stay tuned!
Did you use real people as inspiration for your characters?
As a matter of fact, yes. :) I find it easier if I have a real person (usually a character in someone else's work) to base my own characters on. They feel more real and fleshed out that way. If you wish to know more about that, you might want to visit the News page and check the tags and categories for the Fairefolk mentions, character names, or info sheet! You can also enter the characters' names directly into the search bar and see what comes up! ^_^
The covers are amazing! Who did them?
Thanks! I love them too!! They are the work of incredible artist Consuelo Parra. You can visit her Facebook page here.
Who's going to be on the cover for book 3?
(laughs) I think Onyx should be on that one, but nothing's confirmed yet. ;)
— The Winged Sonata Series —
So, what is going on with the Winged Sonata series and its first book, Arias in the Silence?
At the moment, the series is on the back burner as I wish to really focus myself on launching and feeding the Fairefolk series, but don't worry; it's still on the cooking stove! I'm still adding to it, plotting it on the side, slowly. I just cannot give you any more information or a release date for now, but stay tuned!
How many books will the Winged Sonata series have?
Three books in total (so it's a trilogy, really, but I liked the word "series" better.) Of course, nothing is definite in life and anything is possible, but as of this moment, three books are planned.
— Out of Time —
When will this book be released?
The official launch date is September 9th 2020.
Will there be a second book?
For now, it's a standalone with no second book planned. But anything is possible, really. We'll see where life leads us.
Is it true that this book was inspired by your own experience?
(laughs) In a way, it was! Yes! I have always been a big dreamer. I dream a lot and remember most of my dreams and nightmares when I wake up. And if I'm not too tired when I crawl into bed, I can even "wake up" in my dream and take control ('lucid dreaming' I think it's called).
My dreams (and especially my nightmares) are really dear to me. They plant the seeds for many, many of my stories.
As for direct inspiration for Out of Time: when I was younger, I used to have this reoccurring nightmare, like Leyla. I dreamed that my cousin was really a werewolf and was planning on devouring us all. Of course, when I dream-tell our parents (his and mine), they just laugh and praise my imagination until he pounces and actually eats them! Needless to say I spent a couple of weeks with huge dark circles under my eyes, back then, because I was refusing to fall asleep. (laughs) But unlike Leyla's, none of my dreams have torn a hole in the fabric of reality...not yet, anyway.
— The Lighthouse Keeper —
Will the book become available again?
It has been brought to my attention by a few readers that the book was in serious need of editing. The book has been pulled out of sale by the closing of the platform I was using to publish at the time. If I ever can find the means for it, I will find it an editor and the book will come back on sale. Unfortunately, I cannot, as of now, give a ballpark for its re-release. Keep up with the News page to hear about it once I know more!
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE INFORMATION VENUES
I see you have a newsletter, a News page, and a Patreon page. Which one is best to stay up to date?
All of those options will keep you up to date with what's been going on with me and my writing. It's the timing that varies. For instance, my patrons on Patreon get my weekly updates (Creative Journals) a few days before it is posted on my News Page. The subscribers to my newsletter get a shorter summary at the end of the month directly into their inbox (I trim the less important stuff and leave only the meat) so it doesn't take too much of their time to read or even find the information on the different sites. For more information on each information venues, keep reading!
— Newsletter —
What can I expect to find inside your monthly newsletter?
My newsletter is a little like a VIP area. When I post some big news on my News page, you can sure that my subscribers already know about it. They also get pretty wallpapers of Secrets & Spells as a thank-you for signing up. But that's not all!
They also get:
monthly summaries of what's been going on directly into their inbox;
overviews of what's to expect for the following month;
full chapter excerpts;
polls that can actually impact my books and/or my career;
Which information do you collect when I sign up to your newsletter?
I and my email provider (Mailchimp) only collect your first name, last name (to avoid any confusion) and your email address. Attach to that are ONLY the options you have selected upon singing in (i.e. if you chose to subscribe to my newsletter or announcements, or both, etc.) Other information are automatically collected (such as country of residence and IP address) but are NEVER linked to your personal information. They are simply gathered for statistic purposes.
From there, we may add tags and labels to your profile (for example, if you choose to no longer hear about the Fairefolk series, we will add a tag to that effect so you never get irrelevant mail.)
Your information is NEVER shared with anyone else. Even in the event of a joint promo, WE'll be the ones to contact you and not the authors or publisher taking part into the promotion.
— Patreon —
What exactly is Patreon?
Patreon is a little like a crowdfunding website. Only instead of backers, you get patrons; people that actually support what you do on a monthly basis.
How does it work?
It's easy: patrons (you) pledge a monthly amount to creators (me) and in return, the creators offer the patrons fun, exclusive rewards!
What kind of rewards do patrons get?
It varies depending on your level of pledge (I have five different level, ranging from $1 a month to $50 a month.) Among the rewards are acknowledgment (your name in the books you helped bring into the world); early access to posts such as my Creative Journals or character sheets; signed paperback copies; a chance to actually collaborate with me on a project; access to my Vault of Forgotten Texts; and much more!
There are also Goals to meet all of us together as a group for special reward! (For example, if we reach $350 a month, I will appear on camera answering all of your questions!)
What do you do with the money?
I have very few personal bills, so most (if not all) of the money would be redirected toward my books. I always let my patrons know what they are backing and right now, it's an editor for Secrets & Spells (book one of the Fairefolk series.)
— News Page —
What is on the News page?
The News page is home to everything else. Basically, it's a hold-it-all mess. (laughs) But I'm a neat freak so I try to keep everything clear, labeled, and organized. There's a news part, a creative journals part, reviews, blog posts, etc. I've made it as easy as possible to navigate, but if you feel you need to know more about what this whole section entails, you can read the following post: What Are The Creative Journals?
— Which venue should I choose if... —
...I want to stay up to date?
As previously answered, all three will keep you up to date but at different times and in different ways.
Newsletter: monthly summary of what happened during the month
Patreon: weekly updates about my current work in progress through my creative journals
News page: same as Patreon, but a few days later (and shorter excerpts)
...I like excerpts?
If you like long excerpts: newsletter (full chapter every month)
If you like short, more frequent excerpts: Patreon (get them first) or News page (get them second and cut in half)
N.B.: Of course, none of the excerpts will immediately follow the one that came before; I want to keep some of the mystery alive if you ever wish to read the book! ;)
...I like cover reveals?
My cover reveals follow a very clear path: newsletter, then Patreon, then News page (then social media.) The announcements will have a few days between them so it's all about how fast you want to see it, really. ^_^
...I like to read reviews?
News page only. I might talk about a book or movie or TV series that particularly struck a chord with me on the other venues, but News page is where you're sure to find them.
...I want to help/impact your books/career?
Both the Patreon page and the newsletter offer good options. Every dollar earned through Patreon is a huge financial help in my career (who knew being an indie author cost so much, right?) and some of the higher rewards allow you to collaborate with me or impact my books in some other way. With the newsletter, you get to help on a more general level. For instance, if I hesitate between two books to write next, I will submit a poll to my subscribers and they can help me pick!
Of course, if what you really want to do is lend a hand, you can always sign up to be a beta-reader, receive ARCs or even become a part of my Street Team! Simply fill out the form here.
When will you come to my town/city?
Unfortunately, as I now live in The Netherlands and most of my readership is based in the U.S., it is very difficult for me (financially speaking) to make touring arrangements right now. But rest assure it is in the cards for the future; I LOVE to meet my readers!! <3
In the meantime, stay posted (sign up to my newsletter or visit my News page regularly) and keep in touch on social media or send me an email at email@example.com. I read all of them and try to answer as fast as I can! ^_^