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Interview with a Fangirl: Shay

I am continuing with my series of interviews with Fangirls that I have met through social media!

Today, it is my pleasure to interview Blogger, Podcaster and Fangirl Shay!

I became aware of Shay through the Twitter Star Wars Fangirl Community!

Welcome Shay to The Adventures of The Everyday Fangirl and thank you for taking the time to answer these questions about being a Fangirl.

When did you realize you were a Fangirl?

I actually didn’t realize I was a “fangirl” until fairly recently. I’ve always been really into sci-fi, fantasy, and the like, and I have that kind of personality where, if I set my mind to something, I pretty much never let it go. I’ve been crazy about Star Wars on and off for years, but only a few years ago did I actually really begin to be more open about it, discovering podcasts, fan sites, cosplay, and all the other awesome aspects of it.

How has social media helped or hindered you?

Shay with Sisters and Friend

For me, social media has been very helpful, though I’ve only had limited exposure to it. I just began with Twitter a few months ago, and it’s been a big help in keeping up-to-date on all the news, theories, and getting connected with all the other amazing fans out there.

One of the biggest things that got me back into Star Wars, and caused me to be as active in it as I am now, was getting to know several other major Star Wars fans about my age though a chat-board. All of us started talking about it together, and it was actually through people on there that I was first exposed to terms such as “fangirl”, “shipping”, and “feels”.

We all help each other grow in our love for the series, talking through all our theories, and sharing our knowledge with others who are new to it all. It was amazing. In fact, those guys are the biggest reason why The Elven Padawan even exists today; had it not been for their enthusiasm and overwhelming support when I first mentioned the idea of starting my own podcast, I probably never would have started that endeavor. Because of each other, we’ve all gotten way more involved in this stuff than we ever intended to be, and it’s been a fantastic ride all the way.

When did you first see Star Wars or other favorite fandom, such as Star Trek, Lord of The Rings, etc. and did you love it right away or did this grow on you over time?

I first saw Star Wars when I was very young, probably around the age of three. I still remember walking into our media room and finding my dad watching The Phantom Menace. I was immediately drawn in by the odd green guys with funny hats and no noses, and the girl with the enormous red dress who looked like she was wearing an upside-down chandelier on her head. I watched the prequels a lot over the next several years, and absolutely loved them, even though I didn’t totally understand all the details of the story.

For some reason, my love for the movies died away, and I went through a lapse where I could care less about Star Wars. I basically avoided it as much as possible. Then all of a sudden, several years ago, my dad bought and began watching through the entire saga with my sisters, and I found myself right in the middle of it again. Then came the announcement of work beginning on another movie, and by the time The Force Awakens released, I had become a big fan of the animated branch of the story though Star Wars Rebels.

What have you learned from the Star Wars fan community or other fan communities that has had a positive impact on your life?

You can always find something to talk to people about. There’s no excuse to not be friendly to people just because you’re completely different. To quote an old Jedi proverb we first heard from Bail Organa, “The smallest gesture of kindness can fill a galaxy with hope.” One of the greatest kindness I can show, or that you can show me, is taking the time to talk to me and listen to what I have to say. I’ve made very good friends with people I know only through internet correspondence, and had great conversations with people, all starting with each of us finding out that the other liked the same story. That’s amazing to me, how a teenaged girl can just walk into a random comic book store a state away from where she lives, and strike up an in-depth conversation with a middle-aged man who works there about Grey Jedi, whether Luke actually has to be the only Force-user in the Rebellion, and if Kanan Jarrus is technically a Jedi Knight (and yes, this actually happened to me this summer!).

What else do you Fangirl about?

I was introduced to The Lord of the Rings series a couple years ago, and immediately picked up with that franchise. It reminded me a lot of Star Wars in many ways, and I loved how deep and involved it was, with all the different locations, time periods, races, and cultures of Middle-Earth. Since I saw the movies first, they always hold a special place in my heart, but nothing compares to Tolkien’s original books. And yes, that includes The Silmarillion, Beren and Luthien, The Children of Hurin, not just LOTR and The Hobbit.

I’m also a huge reader, so if I’m not talking the ears off someone about something that’ll have an 80% chance of turning fandom or philosophy related, planning another cosplay, or trying to figure out lightsaber moves in the driveway with a bamboo pole, I’ve probably got my nose stuck in a book somewhere.

Anything else you want to say to others about being a Fangirl?

Don’t be afraid to get your voice out there because you don’t have the same opinions and thoughts as everyone else in the fandom! A lot of my own theories and the things I believe are totally different than the ones currently trending with a lot of the loudest voices in the fandom, but that’s OK. You’ll find that if you get your voice out there, there are a lot of people who think like you who will come out, too. I never thought I’d find other kids my age who were as involved in the deep aspects of the mythology of Star Wars as I am, and who draw the same connections to real-life things like history and theology, but I started talking and putting myself out there, and I’ve connected with some great people. And you’re going find a lot of people who might not agree with you all the time, but are still supportive and awesome and try to help you out anyway. There are still those out there that like to look down on you because you love a certain trilogy, or like Tauriel even though she wasn’t in the book, or just for being a fangirl in general, but don’t let that change who you are.

Where can others interact with you?

Interact with me via…
The Elven Padawan podcast and site or on Twitter: Elven Padawan (@ElvenPadawan

Interview with a Fangirl: Savanna Kiefer

I am continuing with my series of interviews with Fangirls that I have met through social media!

Savanna at the Solo A Star Wars Story Premiere

Today, it is my pleasure to interview Blogger, Podcaster and Fangirl Savanna Kiefer!

I became aware of Savanna through the Star Wars Fangirl Community and count her as one of my Fangirl inspirations!

Welcome Savanna to The Adventures of The Everyday Fangirl and thank you for taking the time to answer these questions about being a Fangirl.

When do you realize you were a Fangirl?

I realized I was a fangirl when I started to meet other fangirls that were just like me! At first, I didn’t know there were other girls who loved Star Wars! Thankfully I was welcomed into an online community when I was in my early teens and that group of girls really shaped who I am today. That’s when I learned I should be proud to consider myself a fangirl and celebrate all the other ladies who loved the same things as I did.

How has social media helped or hindered you?

Social media has really helped me become more confident in myself and allowed me to make lifelong friends! I joined Facebook and Twitter when I was around 13-years-old. That’s when I really started blogging and meeting other girls who were interested in Star Wars too. I’m super thankful that now I have a really supportive group of people, both men and women, following me across all my social media. It’s nice to have a whole army of people to have your back when times get tough and friends to celebrate with when things are good!

When did you first see Star Wars or other favorite fandom, such as Star Trek, Lord of The Rings, Harry Potter, etc. and did you love it right away or did this grow on you over time?

I grew up in a family that loved Star Wars and watched the movies pretty much every single day of the week. I always enjoyed the movies, but I really didn’t claim the fandom as my own or consider myself a fan until I started watching Star Wars: The Clone Wars. That show really catapulted my fandom into something bigger than I could ever imagine. All because of one animated TV show, I’ve had the most amazing opportunities in my life and met incredible people.

What have you learned from the Star Wars fan community or other fan communities that has had a positive impact on your life?

Gosh, I’ve learned so much from the Star Wars fan community! I think the best lesson has been the fact that I will ALWAYS have a family in the community. Obviously, I have my real family, but my Star Wars family is super special. I’ve met friends all over the world who love Star Wars just as much as I do and they’ve blown me away with kindness throughout the years. Sometimes I get hand-written letters from other fangirls that I’ve briefly met in person at a convention or just chatted with online and that’s really cool.

What else do you Fangirl about?

I’m a huge Indiana Jones and Disney parks fangirl! I grew up in central Florida near Walt Disney World and lived in Anaheim last year near Disneyland, so I think Disney definitely runs in my blood. Indiana Jones is great because A) Harrison Ford is the lead star and B) it’s just a really fun adventure series.

Anything else you want to say to others about being a Fangirl?

Never, ever be ashamed of loving the things you love. No matter what it may be, wave your geek flag high and proud!

Where can others interact with you?

You can find me on Twitter and Instagram @savanna_kiefer. My Facebook page is www.facebook.com/TheDorkyDiva and you can find all sorts of fun fandom related posts at www.TheDorkyDiva.com.

Interview with an Artist: Christine

Today, it is my pleasure to interview Christine Flanigan, who is an artist, mother and of course a Fangirl. In addition, she is personal friend of my husband and myself.

She sells her artwork at local events and on her website, designed by my hubby, at http://uniquebychris.com.

Welcome Christine to the Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl and for taking the time to answer these questions!

What first prompt you to become an artist?

Not being able to work because of an illness. I have always been an creative person with a good eye for color including which colors and patterns look good together.

What is your favorite piece and why?

The pieces I like the most are the ones with my favorite colors in. I like blues and greens and purples some pinks too.

What is your least favorite piece and why?

I have a funny way to answer this question…

I have a few pieces that I did not like just because it did not turn out the way I pictured it in my head, like my boxes, I plan what I wire wrap, but when I am done it is always turns out different.

However, those are the ones that everyone else ended up liking the best. So I guess all my pieces are made for someone and it is just waiting to be found by that person.

Who inspired and encourage you to continue to work as an artist?

I love watching YouTube, they are so many people out there that are so gifted. That is who inspired me and teaches me.

How do you decide on which median to create your work in? Is it something that you choose to do at first or does it come to you later?

Fell in love with stones! Always love picking them up at the beach, or on a playground. So I guess the first median for me would be with stones. Learning how to string them is fun, learning how to wrap them is very challenging.

The new median I like to work with now is resin and paints. I love how when it is harden your painting is set for life. The resin painting always turns out different no matter what I plan, and you know I think that why I like that median the best.

How has social media helped or hindered you?

Oh yes! Social media help me out a lot. The different sites give me not only some great ideas, but the right way to go. However, I don’t want anyone to think that what ideas I come up with are only from others on social media. A lot times, I find a different way to make things that is easier for me to do. For example, I hate to make earrings because they both have to be the same. However, I pride myself on how each earring is different.

What kind of research do you have to do before you create a particular art piece?

Everything I make I have teach myself how to do. I go to the internet for help! I look and YouTube and Pinterest for ideas.

What makes you laugh?

What makes me laugh?, umm let me think, my dog and my cat, they sometimes do some really funny things. My kids are so funny sometimes. Being with friends and playing a good board game.

What makes you cry?

A very sad show or reading a sad story. Really it doesn’t take me very long to cry at anything. Plus I am a cryer when I get very mad too, which is what I hate the most about myself.

Thanks Christine for the interview! You can find more about Christine and her artwork at uniquebychris.com. She will also be at several events in 2018 including PenguinCon!

Interview with Author Amanda Cherry

It is a pleasure to welcome Amanda Cherry author of Rites & Desires.

Welcome Amanda to The Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl and thanks so much for taking the time out your busy schedule to help us get to know you and your stories better.

Thanks a Million for having me!

What does the title of this novel, series or set of stories signify?

Rites & Desires is a distillation of what’s on the protagonist’s mind all the time. Ruby is obsessed with getting what she wants, the return of her lost magical powers most of all. And since the book is all about Ruby, I wanted the title to be a reflection of her inner world.

Do the names of the characters in your novel have some sort of significance or importance to you? If so, give a few examples…

The only character I got to name on my own was Arsho Barsamian, who is a minor character who I love in a major way. They are a genderfluid top-tier executive and part of the Armenian Diaspora. I think nonbinary people in positions of power aren’t often seen in fiction, so I gave them the name that means “Dawn” in Armenian, because I think of it as a beginning of a kind of representation that we don’t get enough of. Everyone else was already an existing character in the universe or in mythology.

What prompted you to write in this genre and who or what inspired you to?

My book takes place in the Cobalt City universe of heroes and villains. I had read several earlier stories and was already a big fan of the characters when I was invited to submit to their short story anthology in 2015. The character of Ruby Killingsworth, who became my book’s protagonist, was loosely based on me when she was first seen in a story by Dawn Vogel. After my short story sold, and I had set Ruby on this course, I really wanted to see her through it. I was thrilled when DefCon One Publishing said yes!

What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer and do your characters reflect some of these attributes?

There’s a balance to be struck between adequate focus to get things done, and being so hyper-focused you forget to brush your teeth or wash your kid’s clothes. Ruby is a champion of multitasking—I wish I were as good at it as she is. For me, sanity while writing (while drafting especially) lies in part in finding joy in your fictional world and being able to look forward to returning there day after day after day. Ruby is a practiced hedonist and she has a way of finding joy in every moment. If she’s not having a good time, she changes something until she is—and that’s a great metaphor for a story: if I’m not having a good time, the readers won’t either, and I should change something until it’s fun!

What kind of research did you have to do for the novel, series or set of stories that was different from others?

Most people who are familiar with me as a writer know that I cut my author-teeth writing fanfiction. So I am very accustomed to doing my research and having to get to know existing characters and their voices before sitting down to create a story. This book took things to a whole new level. There are multiple mythologies represented in this book. A Norse god is a featured character, and there are brushes with both Tibetan Buddhism and the Queen of Sheba. I had to spend oodles of time making sure I had things just so. I didn’t want to misrepresent anything with a basis in genuine tradition, so it was a lot of work—but it was worth it in the end. I’m very happy with the finished product.

What makes you laugh?

My four year-old. A good Star Wars joke. My dog.

What makes you cry?

The fact that my childhood best friend, my mom, and my lifelong hero aren’t here to read my book. Go out and create RIGHT NOW, people! Tomorrow could be too late for the people you love most to share it with you!

What are you a fan of and is this reflected in your writing?

I am a geek of the highest degree. I love Star Wars and Harry Potter the most, but my love for Star Trek: TNG. The X-Files, Buffy, and the West Wing have also spawned epic fannishness. I think I see a little of all of this in my writing. There’s definitely the kind of witty banter that my favorite characters are known for as well as elements of magic that you might find in the Buffyverse. There’s even a little politicking.

Is there anything else you want to add about the story, series that has not already been mentioned?

This is my debut novel and I am more than thrilled to be sharing this story with everyone. MY protagonist is objectively a villain, which is an interesting point of view from which to tell a story. I think it’s fresh and fun and I think people will enjoy it.

What is the best way for readers to interact with you?

I am super accessible! I am probably most easily reached via tweet @MandaTheGinger . I also have a Facebook Page, a Website: www.TheGingerVillain.com, an Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/author/amandacherry
and a Goodreads Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16099525.Amanda_Cherry

Amanda Cherry is a native of Pensacola, FL and an alumnus of UNLV who hasn’t been thoroughly warm since moving to the Seattle area in 2003. Amanda’s first love was performing, and she has had a successful career as a theatre, television, and film actress.

Amanda’s first book was penned in her family’s den and published by her father in time for Christmas in 1985, she was six years old. After the limited success of that first outing, Amanda turned to writing stories for fun. She spent the next twenty-odd years doing just that.

A lifelong nerd, Amanda joined the staff at her favorite Star Wars site, Tosche Station, as a contributing writer in 2016 and discovered that letting other people read what she’d written was actually pretty fun. Thanks to the encouragement of a friend, she was invited to submit to Cobalt City Christmas: Christmas Harder in 2016 while living overseas in Berlin, Germany. When she learned that her story was bought, she cried.

Interview with Author E.L. Roux

It is a pleasure to welcome E.L. Roux author of Unrequited Love, Book 1 of The Magic and Heartache series.

Welcome E.L. to The Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl and thanks so much for taking the time out your busy schedule to help us get to know you and your stories better.

What does the title of this novel, series or set of stories signify?

The Magic and Heartache series is meant to be about characters who must overcome a past heartache in order to move on and find the HEA.

What prompted you to write in this genre and who or what inspired you to? 

I read, a lot. And I’ve always love fantasy and science fiction romances, and I usually take from current events, and research projects to sculpt my stories. The idea for this series actually came from a thread from rainbow-femme tumblr rant about being sick of magical worlds not having coffee shops where you can get a shot of charisma before a big meeting, that and being asked to join an anthology group for Love Through Heartache, published in November 2017. I fell in love with the world I built, and the characters who lived in them, and had to write more.

What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer and do your characters reflect some of these attributes?

I think honesty and being loved for who you are, are very important attributes to being a better person, and staying sane, especially in today’s world, so I try and include those attributes into the characters I write, and the stories that I read.

What kind of research did you have to do for the novel, series or set of stories that was different from others? 

I wanted to create a fantasy world where you’d meet characters that didn’t meet your normal fantasy expectations while creating new ones to introduce you to. I actually did a lot of research on Greek, Roman, and German gods and spirits, and loosely based some of my fantasy races off of them. For instance, I have Trolls in my story, but they aren’t the hulking ugly things you’ve read about before. And since the series books will be about novella length, I haven’t had the opportunity to reach further away from euro-centric gods, but I’m hoping to add more characters unique character types later.

What makes you laugh?

I’m a sucker for puns and silly jokes. I laugh at a lot actually, and often crack myself up, so at least I find myself funny even if no one else does. My goal is to reach the apex of dad-joke level (parent-joke level), but my pun game is severely lacking.

What makes you cry?

I’m a sucker for animal videos, and dance mobs, but reading wise, I love when a soul has been bared and torn open for us to experience their pain and watch as they rebuild themselves, usually with help, into a better person.

Is there anything else you want to add about the story, series that has not already been mentioned?

Unrequited Love will be re-released as a slightly expanded and re-edited stand alone novel on April 19!

The second book in the series will be out by the end of May!

What is the best way for readers to interact with you?

My main author interaction is through Facebook, @ELRouxAuthor

Pre-Order Updated and revised Unrequited Love here.

Anthology Love Through Heartache, featuring Unrequited Love available via Amazon.

Interview with a Fangirl: Letetia

I am continuing with my series of interviews with Fangirls that I have met through social media!

Today, it is my pleasure to interview Fangirl Letetia!

I became aware of Letetia through the Facebook Star Wars Fangirl Community.

Welcome Letetia to The Adventures of The Everyday Fangirl and thank you for taking the time to answer these questions about being a Fangirl.

When did I realize I was a Fangirl?

I was finding podcasts to listen to and came upon Fangirls Going Rogue‘s first podcast. They were talking about being Fangirls and what it meant to them and while I was listening to them it dawned on me that I was a Fangirl.

How has social media helped or hindered you?

On Facebook in the Star Wars pages and groups that I’m on I have been able to speak my mind on Star Wars issues with little flack. Social media has helped me keep up with Star Wars news and have found a lot of podcasts to listen to. I haven’t felt hindered at all. Nobody has shut my voice down as of yet.

When did you first see Star Wars or other favorite fandoms such as Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, etc and did you love it right away or did this grow on you over time?

In 1977 when I was 23 years old  and married to my first husband, we were watching TV and a commercial came on for Star Wars and I thought to myself do I really have to go to see this movie? Well, I was 6 1/2 months pregnant and we decided to wait until the lines died down before we went to see it because of my condition. We went to the theater and sat down to watch it and I had to get up about 2-3 times to go to the restroom. But by the time the movie was over I was hooked! We went back about 2-3 times to see it so I could see the places in the movie that I missed by getting up to go to the restroom

What have you learned from the Star Wars fan community or other fan communities that has been a positive impact on my life?

Before I became active with JediOKC I did not have much of a social life. I have been divorced for about 15 years and had kept to myself except for family gatherings. It has given me friends that I can communicate with and do events together and give back to the community. I have learned that people do care for others out there. And that together we can make a difference.

What else do you Fangirl about?

I love the Indiana Jones movies, I’m a huge Fangirl about Harrison Ford! I love Wonder Woman. I like Stargate, Star Trek and Independence Day.

Where can others interact with you?

You can friend me on Facebook or I’m also on Twitter @OklahomaJedi.

Interview With Author: Eva Caye

It is a pleasure to welcome Eva Caye author of the The To Be Sinclair series.

Welcome Eva to The Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl and thanks so much for taking the time out your busy schedule to help us get to know you and your stories better.

What does the title of this novel, series or set of stories signify?

The To Be Sinclair series is about the greatest ruling family in the history of the galaxy, which means nobility. So I exemplify the ‘noble virtues’ or chivalrous code of honor in the titles, which describe the overall theme of the novel. The only one I couldn’t come up with to fit the brand was Evan’s Ladies; it was the first book made exclusively of novellas, although my most recent one, Integrity, consists of three novellas.

Do the names of the characters in your novel have some sort of significance or importance to you? If so, give a few examples…

Overall, I simply choose names I like. However, when the Sandy Hook massacre took place, a meme started floating around Facebook that said, “Here are the names of the victims so you won’t remember the names of their murderer.” I took that to heart and incorporated the first and last names, separately, into my next few books as tribute to them. They’re usually benevolent or highly responsible characters, like Sentinels, who are the equivalent of the FBI/Secret Service. I think I’ve gotten them all by now!

What prompted you to write in this genre and who or what inspired you to?

I’ve always loved science fiction, but I chose to write science fiction romance because they’re two ends of a spectrum running from ‘intellectual objectivity’ to ‘emotional reaction’. I even wrote an article called, “Science Fiction Romance: the Ultimate Fusion!”, found here, to explain why I felt it was necessary to bring ‘the feels’ to science fiction. And, preferably, the good feels aka love! After all, even if you’re a brilliant mad scientist, the most important decision you can make in life is who you’ll spend it with.

My overall goal, however, is to write science fiction in a way that intrigues the romance crowd – not too heavy on the science, but with consistent explanations that might encourage a young lady to pursue science as a career, or that’ll leave a romance reader satisfied that these things are indeed quite plausible and can happen in the future.

I think I’ve particularly pegged the characterization of each scientist, though! I’m sure anyone who is married to a scientist will recognize their spouse in at least one of the characters!

What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer and do your characters reflect some of these attributes?

I have no problem with ‘remaining sane’ as a writer. I do, however, incorporate a lot of psychology into my series, and several of my characters suffer depression like I do.

I rather object to depression being labeled a ‘mental illness’; there’s some real physical problem underlying it all, and I desperately hope someone figures it out soon. But, until then, I can at least write about how to deal with people suffering depression. In my most recent book, Integrity, I try to convey exactly what it’s like, and my editor praised me highly for it.

What kind of research did you have to do for the novel, series or set of stories that was different from others?

I research all kinds of things, from black holes and quantum gravity to how ancient Greek royalty was addressed. Authors make a lot of jokes with each other about how long our NSA files must be, from Googling how far pieces of glass would fly if you used X amount of C4, or how big an explosion an atomic bomb makes if the atomic part doesn’t go off!

What makes you laugh?

Clever intellectual mash-ups, like Doctor Who songs or Star Trek/Star Wars mashups. I detest slapstick because I see nothing funny about inflicting pain or embarrassment on anyone.

What makes you cry?

Animal cruelty. I occasionally warn people on Facebook about how I block ‘friends’ who post it, and I’ve blocked four people so far.

What are you a fan of and is this reflected in your writing?

Oh, I’m always including my interests in my stories! I love to tat, so in one book I have a lady who tats cute little creatures for her friends, and eventually creates emblems for the Imperial Family. I have another lady ‘teach’ her boyfriend, the Crown Prince, how to lounge on a couch because he’s been raised ‘properly’ and needs to loosen up. She even introduces him to junk food!

Is there anything else you want to add about the story, series that has not already been mentioned?

The To Be Sinclair series spans three generations. The first two books are about the parents of the protagonists in the next six books, and the grandparents of everyone after that.

Otherwise, one of the main undercurrents is how women can fight their way out of a highly patriarchal society to achieve their dreams. My next (probably last) novel, Civility, will be over one of the daughters and one of the granddaughters, and it’ll be a declaration for women’s rights, as well as the rights of intelligent alien species!

What is the best way for readers to interact with you?

I can always be reached by email, but I’ve been shying away from Facebook lately due to all the negativity.

Thanks again Eva for the interview!

Eva Caye, author of the To Be Sinclair series, can build a rocket stove, tat lace, handle a gun, design book covers and permaculture garden plans, and teach teenagers critical thinking. Her favorite activities include writing science fiction romance and playing with her doggie. She currently lives in a tiny, century-old farmhouse with her magnificent husband and a marvelous rescue mutt in Louisville, Kentucky.

Ways to connect with Eva:

Blog: http://evacaye.blogspot.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/eva.caye
Author Central: http://amazon.com/author/evacaye
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/evacaye
Payhip: http://payhip.com/evacaye
Twitter: https://twitter.com/EvaCaye
Google +: http://plus.google.com/u/0/106270772543621634687/posts

Interview with a Fangirl: Mel

I am continuing with my series of interviews with Fangirls that I have met through social media!

Today, it is my pleasure to interview Fangirl, Podcaster and Blogger Mel Perez, @jane_anon.

I became aware of Mel through the Black Girl Nerds blog and the Twitter Star Wars and Doctor Who Fan Communities.

Welcome Mel to The Adventures of The Everyday Fangirl and thank you for taking the time to answer these questions about being a Fangirl.

When do you realize you were a Fangirl?

I don’t have a specific moment that I can look to and say that’s when I realized it. I grew up loving 80s fantasy, science fiction and anime. Until maybe high school, I thought this was completely normal. It’s only later that I discovered that everyone wasn’t always watching Conan, Star Wars or some anime dubbed in Spanish in their free time. If I had to pick a time, I would probably say high school. That’s when I become involved in message boards, chat rooms and websites for the shows I loved. Shout out to AOL Chat. I guess that’s when my fangirling leveled up.

How has social media helped or hindered you?

For the most part, social media has helped me. It got me involved with Black Girl Nerds. It helped me find a group to start a podcast with. It’s how I find people who are interested in the same things as me. It’s not all positive though. There’s something about being a woman and especially a woman of color on social media that almost invites trolls. It paints a target on your back saying please question everything I say, assume I don’t know anything and basically treat me like an idiot. I’m not the best at dealing with them. It does make me want to leave sometimes. I’ve had periods when I had to lock my account just to avoid all of the people attacking me.

When did you first see Star Wars or other favorite fandom, such as Star Trek, Lord of The Rings, etc. and did you love it right away or did this grow on you over time?

I was really young when I first saw Star Wars so I can’t say exactly when. I think my first clearest memory of seeing it was when I was 10. I was riveted to the screen. I remember my cousins trying to get my attention to go play outside but they would have had to drag me to get me away from that movie. The moment I saw Luke watch the twin suns setting on Tatooine with the John Williams score swelling in the background, I knew I was in love.

Star Trek, on the other hand, is a more interesting story. My mother and my grandmother loved the original show. I didn’t. It took me until after college to start watching Star Trek: The Next Generation. It took some time but I did fall in love with it and Deep Space Nine which took me even longer to watch. I still haven’t seen the original series though I did take my mother and grandmother to see the first reboot for Mother’s Day.

What have you learned from the Star Wars fan community or other fan communities that has had a positive impact on your life?

I’m not as involved in the Star Wars fan community as I would like. The fan communities I think of fondly are Harry Potter, Supernatural, Doctor Who, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, even Teen Wolf. I think fondly of these communities made up of mostly women who loved to talk about the works, write about them, vid them, etc. Being involved in these communities helped me come out of my shell. It pushed me to start writing. These communities emphasized that my opinion mattered and that it was okay emotionally invested in these properties. I’ve met so many amazing fangirls who have become true friends. Fangirls have brought so much joy into my life.

What else do you Fangirl about?

I named a few of them in the last answer. I’ve spent the past year fangirling about Yuri on Ice. It rekindled my love of figure skating which I am also now fangirling about. I’m still an MCU fangirl though I may get superhero fatigue now and then. Also comic books, marine animals, 80s fantasy movies forever, Game of Thrones, Orphan Black, Bob’s Burgers and mid to late 90s/early 2000s anime. After Star Wars, Doctor Who is probably my biggest fandom.

Anything else you want to say to others about being a Fangirl?

It’s awesome. It’s empowering. It’s fun. It’s fulfilling.

Where can others interact with you?

I can be found tweeting about comics, Yuri on Ice, Doctor Who or Star Wars at @jane_anon.

Interview with Author: Carmen Webster Buxton

It is a pleasure to welcome Carmen Webster Buxton author of Alien Bonds.

Welcome Carmen to The Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl and thanks so much for taking the time out your busy schedule to help us get to know you and your stories better.

What does the title of this novel, series or set of stories signify?

The series is called Wakanreo because that’s the name I gave the alien world. The first book is called Alien Bonds because the protagonist finds herself tied to the world—and to one particular Wakanrean—in a way she never expected.

Do the names of the characters in your novel have some sort of significance or importance to you? If so, give a few examples…

I confess to a certain pettiness in that sometimes the bad guys are named after people I didn’t like, but other than that, I don’t tend to name characters with any scheme in mind. Mostly names pop into my head.

What prompted you to write in this genre and who or what inspired you to?

I loved science fiction and adventure stories when I was a kid, but when I look at the far future, I want something familiar, something I understand, so I add romance. Even my books that aren’t romances almost always have a love story or two. And I love reading about different cultures and customs, real or made-up. My favorite authors include Ursula LeGuin, Jane Austen, and Georgette Heyer.

What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer and do your characters reflect some of these attributes?

One reason I’m a writer is I want to control the story. I want the characters to say and do what I want. But left unchecked, this tendency can result in stories only I would want to read. So I have to be willing to listen to what other people think about my stories. Certainly, the more agreeable of my characters are willing to learn from others.

What kind of research did you have to do for the novel, series or set of stories that was different from others?

In making the aliens very like humans, but still different, I had to decide what could be different and what should be the same. For example, I was going to give the aliens “cat-eyes” with vertical slit pupils but in reading about evolution, I discovered animals with slit pupils evolved as four-footed creatures who hunted close to the ground, which helped them see in shadowy places like under bushes. Since the Wakanreans are slightly taller than humans, I opted to give them round pupils.

What makes you laugh?

The unexpected, especially when it includes a dose of karma. I love seeing someone who deserves it get their comeuppance when they least expect it.

What makes you cry?

Pretty much anything at all sad. I don’t just cry reading sad books or watching sad movies. A commercial on TV can make me tear up.

What are you a fan of and is this reflected in your writing?

I love to be amused. This is certainly reflected in my books to some extent, although they are not primarily humorous. But in terms of what I look for in a book, I want to be transported to a different time and place and I want to care what happens to the characters in the story.

Is there anything else you want to add about the story, series that has not already been mentioned?

Come visit Wakanreo!

What is the best way for readers to interact with you?

Comment on my blog (http://carmenspage.blogspot.com/). Or if it’s a private question, my email is on the ‘About’ page on my blog.

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Carmen Webster Buxton author of Novels: The Sixth Discipline, No Safe Haven, Tribes, The Nostalgia Gambit, Shades of Empire, King of Trees, Saronna’s Gift, Turnabout, Alien Bonds and Novella: Where Magic Rules

Connect with Carmen via:

Interview With A Fanboy Who Supports Fangirls: Woody

Welcome to another installment of the interviews with Fanboys who Support Fangirls series.

Today, The Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl interviews Woodrow Hull, who is a Fanboy from Alaska. I met Woody via the Star Wars community on Twitter.

Woody showing off his cool Superman baseball Cap via Twitter

Thanks so much Woody for joining us today and for letting us get to know you better and how you support fellow Fangirls, like myself!

What fandoms are you a fanboy of and for how long?

I have been a fan of Sci Fi in general but fell in love with Star Wars when it came out in 77. I watched Star Trek with my dad in reruns growing up. I also read and collect a variety of comics and Fantasy books. TSR is another favourite along with Knaak Asprine Heinlein. There is just so much wonderful things to geek out over.

When did you first learn about Fangirls?

When I finally got on Twitter. Growing up at my local comic store we never saw a woman inside and dating was taboo to be geeky….for decades I never knew of women who were into geekness. Then I saw all these amazing women when I followed the Star Wars Celebration last year. I was shocked amazed and excited to see how much love there is, especially with the ladies working on Looking for Leia.

Who are the Fangirls you support?

I follow alot of cosplayers, especially, @Xenadd, she is one of the best I have seen.

What do you do to support Fangirls?

I try to be supportive online and like the cosplay. I sent @xenadd a coffee thing through PayPal. I defend against the haters and give encouragement. Wish I could do more and meet more, but living in Alaska is hard to do.

How has social media helped or hindered you in this effort?

It helped a lot! I never knew this many people in all walks of life, all personalities, all genres loved in this geeky life, as I do.

Anything else you want to say to others about being a Fanboy who supports Fangirl?

Show love and support. There is no reason to be hateful or derogatory. Don’t bash on someone’s cosplay how they look or who they want to pose with. Ask before touching or posing. No one I met at my first con refused a picture and those who had time enjoyed talking about their cosplay.

How can others get in touch with you?

Find me on Twitter @woodysalaskan

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