Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Hi! My name is Clara. I'm a college student who is working toward finishing my English degree. I have written poetry and short stories over the years and "A Kingdom of Shadow" is my first completed novel, but I have more coming! I'm currently working on its sequel and another project.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My first (and latest book) is "A Kingdom of Shadow." I juggled with this story for a few months before I decided to write it. What inspired me to write it was I wanted to write a story where it isn't always the male hero saving the damsel in distress. I wanted to challenge that where the girl is the one that saves the man (or in this case, a king!) and the story unfolds from there.
In addition, Ellyn (the main character) struggles with her family and her own depression. I wanted to give my readers someone they could relate to on a personal level. Growing up is never easy, especially if you had a terrible tragedy in your childhood. Ellyn never had much in life, but it is her determination to do better that drives her to do more and be better. I believe where you come from doesn't dictate where you will end up and I wanted to make "A Kingdom of Shadow" about that.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Unusual… well, I do everything from listening to music, watching tv shows and movies while writing. I also have trouble writing every single day which I don't think is the best advice to give every new writer. More on that later!
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Sooo many! But I have to say, Sarah J. Maas, Leigh Bardugo, Kristin Cashore, and Marissa Meyer. I developed my love for reading through Cashore's Graceling series, so I suppose she deserves the most credit!
What are you working on now?
I am currently working on the sequel to "A Kingdom of Shadow" and an independent project which will hopefully be released in early 2018.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I find most of my sales come from Facebook and connecting with others. Other various promotional sites can help, but I find taking the extra time to connect with your readers is the best way.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
The famous advice you hear is "write every day." In reality, this can be quite impossible with all your other responsibilities such as your family, school, your health, and your job. The best advice I can give every new author is to THINK about writing every day. Even if you don't type that next chapter, just taking some time to plot, build your world, and develop your characters can have a big impact in the end! Perhaps, you will end up writing down a totally new idea you can flush out later when you have more time!
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
"All great things come in time." This is true I think especially for writers and aspiring authors. It's okay if you don't write very fast or have trouble promoting. These things take time and if you keep at it, you will reach your goals!
What are you reading now?
I have quite a stack actually! I'm finishing up the Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer and her new book Renegades. I am also reading "13 Reasons Why" with my fiance.
What’s next for you as a writer?
My main focus right now is to promote my current book and to write the other two works in progress.
What is your favorite book of all time?
I cherish all my books. As for my favorite… it would have to be between the Grisha Trilogy, Six of Crows Duology, Graceling Series, and all my Sarah J. Mass Books
Author Websites and Profiles
Clara C. Johnson Website