In honor of the anthology, I'll be spotlighting different contributors between now and its release in May. Today's blog post features fellow author Erika Beebe, who contributed the story "The Wheat Witch" to the anthology. Read on for an interview with Erika.
Interview with Erika Beebe
Hemingway summed it up in the quote: “Imagination? It is the one thing besides honesty that a good writer must have. The more he learns from experience the more he can imagine.”
Writing is imagining problems and solutions, breaking and rebreaking until your character’s story is told in a satisfactory manner from your own perspective. The more life you cram into your own personal world, the more human your characters and the worlds you write become. Not that I wish tragedy on anyone. It happens regardless to all of us. But don’t be afraid to live. And those around you should fear you’ll use their stories at any given moment (politely of course).
What do you like to write about or what drew you to this anthology? Is there anything interesting about your background as a writer you’d like to share?
I’d like to stay the course in Young Adult Contemporary or Urban Fantasy. Teens need all the magic and hope they can get. They’ll be in charge of the future and I like working with them, and writing for them. Hope is my motto. I write to bring hope when the world feels desperate and dark. I’ve been down plenty of deep rabbit holes and had to dig my own way out. The fallen hero theme of the anthology seemed perfect, envisioning a hero at the bottom and then writing the way back up to the top. Ethan, the main character in my own short story “The Wheat Witch,” doesn’t allow himself to succeed. His fall caused a lifetime of failures due to his own lack of diving deep and listening to his heart.
Anything interesting about me? I volunteered and worked in a zoo for a good 8 years. I shoveled hippopotamus dung, and welded the lion exhibit. I cleaned the gardens, hoisted away the trash, drove the train, boats and survived many hot days in the blazing Kansas summer heat. All of these experiences helped sharpen my awareness of the senses. Imagine what I smelled like after a morning cleaning the dung in the African Veldt, or the fear I felt climbing a small metal pathway from under the lion exhibit nearly peeing my pants when the lion lunged at me, way too close? Turkey vultures stalked me and one attacked me, trying to grab my hair in his feet. I think I picture the senses and I paint them well because I’ve been there.
What’s your favorite recent book and/or one from your teen years or something from your to-read pile?
My all time favorite series was Becca Fitzpatrick’s Hush-Hush Series. The second series? L.A. Weatherly’s Angel books. I like the balance of character and the creativity in both worlds. The series held strong through every book, something that dies in others I’ve read.
Writer, author, dreamer, she envisions the possibilities in life and writes to bring hope when sometimes the moment doesn’t always feel that way. Working in the field of public relations and communications for more than fifteen years, she has always been involved with writing, editing, and engaging others in public speaking. In 2013, her first short story “Stage Fright” published in One More Day anthology. Her two young children help keep her creativity alive and the feeling of play in the forefront of her mind.