S. K. Anthony 2017 Novel of Excellence Winner

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"This is NOT a story you can every get comfortable in. Right when you’re sure you can or can’t trust someone, you’re not sure again. You feel this constant roller-coaster through the entire story, and I could not have enjoyed it more."

Hello! Please tell us a bit about yourself.


I’m a make-stuff-up-per who enjoys the world of imagination, both as a writer and as a reader. I’m a huge coffee lover—partly because it’s writing fluid, and partly because I’m a mom of twins. And, well, energy is something I’m always in search of, which is probably why my first book Kinetic deals with the MC being an unlimited source of energy lol.


What inspired you to become an author?

I’ve always had a passion for the art of storytelling. I was that little girl you’d find ignoring homework in favor of reading books or writing poems, lyrics, and re-writing shows on TV I didn’t agree with. Then in fourth grade, I got in trouble and was forced to pay more attention to schoolwork, pfft. So now I write to fulfill that kid’s dream, and I’m happier for it.

My inspiration for Kinetic, apart from my obsession with coffee and energy, was—as cliché as it sounds—a dream of an extremely strong girl who was broken and weak inside, and called herself a Luminary. So I woke up intrigued and had no choice but to write her story.



Can you tell us about your publishing journey? Why did you choose to self-publish?

My dream was to accomplish writing a book and holding it in my hands. For me, and just for me. My personal challenge was doing it in an entirely different language that was not my native one. I’ve lived in New York for half my life now, and yes I’ve learned English, but writing a book has its own complexities on top of constantly translating your thoughts from head to paper. So when I set out to publish my book, I chose the independent route. I didn’t want anyone telling me I couldn’t or shouldn’t publish my novel. I’m a perfectionist, and even though it was only for me, I still wanted to have a quality product, so I fed my inner control-freak, and went about it. Thinking back, I like having control of my stories, titles, and covers, etc., so no matter what my original reason was, being an independent author is still the right path for me. That being said, the awards and love from readers aren’t just icing on the cake for me, it’s all a total dream come true.


What was the inspiration for your characters? Were they based on people you know or acquaintances?

Were they based on the people I know? Nah, I don’t know anyone that cool. Kidding! Some names are based on people in my life, but I approached my characters in terms of powers. A super strong girl who loves to kick ass but has a big heart would be a quirky fun girl. Another who can run at cheetah-speed would be sassy, and a healer would be a sensitive, gentle soul, etc. So I guess my inspiration was their powers.


What is your day-to-day routine like as a writer?

Since I have young kids, my writing routine is full of interruptions! Just like many writers, I really have to squeeze out the time to get it done. So my most successful writing sessions happen between midnight and six am . . . on the days I’m not busy with my other creative endeavors, that is. Basically, my writing routine is pretty sporadic, but when it happens, I light my candle or incense, pour my wine or coffee, and hope for the best. Really, really hope for the best.


 How do you stay motivated and inspired to write?

Oh my goodness, by reading. That is my number one motivation, but also by watching Netflix and movies and such. Storytelling in all its forms is amazing! I’m always in awe of being that creative, so I never lack inspiration to sit down and write. Time on the other hand . . . well, that’s the real challenge.


Is there a “how to” writing book you recommend?

Oh yes!!! I recommend Save the Cat by Blake Snyder and On Writing by Stephen King.


What were the top three learning experiences or surprises you encountered throughout the publishing/writing process?

Let’s see, I learned that no matter how many books you write, insecurity will always haunt you. I’m surprised at how much people take for granted all the work, hours, sweat, and even financial investment writers pour into one book. And I learned that being an author truly is a work of love. Not many people give themselves homework for the rest of their lives like we do, and enjoy every second of it.


What types of authors have influenced your work?

I’m not sure that she’s influenced my work since we’re night and day, but J.K. Rowling has influenced my passion for writing, that’s for sure! As far as types of authors, I read almost all genres and I love learning from each writer’s strength. I hope to carry their influence to my work in a unique way, and to keep learning from them as I go.


What advice would you give to young writers?

Read. Go out and live. And don’t stop writing.
I’m surprised at how many writers say they don’t enjoy reading and then are shocked when their work falls short. I feel like the passion for writing and reading go hand-in-hand, and I find myself less inspired when I haven’t read in a while. So that’s an important one for me.

Make sure you go out and live, it’s the best way to get inspiration for your fiction, trust me, this is vital. I know this because I’m a hermit and see a huge difference in my writing when I suck it up and go out to enjoy the outside world.

And most importantly, keep writing. Show up every day, or every week, depending on your schedule, sit down and write. Even if it’s just for yourself, you’ll benefit from it.

Thanks so much for having me!