Trick-or-Treat Thrillers is pleased to present our interview with Kya Aliana, publisher and author!
Tell us about your new publishing house Aspirations Press? What types of books do you publish? What challenges have you faced?
I publish anthologies filled with stories written by young, aspiring authors under 18. In this first anthology, Dreams Come True: Stories for the Campfire, the youngest author is only 7 years old! The biggest challenge I’ve faced is finding time for everything. Between interviews, guest blogging, and answering questions for artcles on news outlets, it’s hard to find time to eat dinner! Haha, thankfully I have coffee to get me through.
What gave you the idea for your Dreams Come True anthology?
Growing up, I was fortunate enough to have an immense amount of support and encouragement from my amazing parents, family, friends, and the outstanding Watauga County Public Library in Boone, NC. These positive reinforcements have sculpted my goals and motivation. Unfortunately, I am sure you are just as aware as I am, not all kids get that kind of support. Many amazingly talented youths just fall by the wayside, feeling they are not enough, with the no one to turn to, and no one to support their efforts.
My goal is to positively support and inspire young authors ambitions by professionally editing, publishing, promoting their names and stories, and helping them get the recognition and the encouragement they deserve. They are the future voices of their generation, and I look forward to publishing them and getting their names out there as the new premier authors of fiction. I hope you will join me in this goal!
What got you into writing horror?
Stephen King, mostly. I remember picking up his book, Salem’s Lot, and reading all night long. It was enthralling and his world and characters came to life in my mind. I felt love for them, fear from some, and most of all my heart wouldn’t stop racing. I’d never had a book make me feel so many things before. So that’s when I knew that was my genre. It called to me.
The only thing was that I wanted to read about teenagers more than adults. So, therefore I started making up my own horror stories with characters my own age. Now, I’m addicted to writing YA horror/suspense. It’s in my blood and I love it!
What else have you written?
I’ve written and self published 5 novels, all YA thriller/horror/suspense. These I wrote as a teen in high school. Right now I’m working on a standalone novel, different from anything I’ve written thus far but still in the YA genre. I plan on pitching this one to agents and publishers in 2016.
What is the writing process like for you? What is your writing day like?
I’ve tried several different methods. Right now, I’m outlining. My writing day starts with a good, strong mug of coffee (cream, no sugar), then it continues as I sit down and collect my thoughts from the night before. I’m sure I’m not the only one who gets amazing plot twists and makes connections JUST before she falls asleep. Luckily I either write them down or remember most in the morning. I jot down some notes, and then I spend the next 8-10 hours either outlining, writing, or sometimes playing around with fun story prompts and exercises just to get my brain active and thinking about writing.
What is your favorite book (other than your own book, of course) and why?
Wow, that’s a tough one. I have so many favorite books and authors and all for different reasons. But, if I absolutely had to pick just one favorite book, I would go with THE OUTSIDERS by S.E. Hinton. That was the first book I read in one sitting. The first book to make me cry. The first book to rip out my heart and stomp on it and I still came back to read it again! It was the book that made me realize that you don’t have to write about teen jocks and cheerleaders for it to be YA fiction; you can write about realistic teens, with real issues, and it still be amazing. It also made me realize I didn’t have to wait to grow up to be an author because Hinton was only 16 when she wrote it.
What are you doing next?
I’m preparing for the next issue of The Dreams Come True Anthology by Aspirations Press, and continuing to work on my next novel to pitch to agents and publishers in 2016. J
What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Just keep writing. Put yourself out there. Be daring! Do what you love because you love it and never stop. J