Emma CrowE has been writing short stories for as long as she can remember. Speaking to the Literary Express in an exclusive interaction, the nineteen-year-old author, who is currently studying English: Professional and Creative Writing at Central Washington University, the US, says she would write fantasy stories that were not more than two pages long when she was younger but as she got older, she began writing more elaborate stories. ‘It was last summer when I decided to finally take the jump and write the novel I had planned out,’ she tells us with a smile.
Debuting With an LGBTQ+ Fiction
Talking about ‘The Mayor’s Daughter’, which was self-published last November, Emma CrowE says it is a YA LGBTQ+ Contemporary Fiction novel. ‘It follows the lives of seventeen-year-olds Chloe Carp and Ash Martin, and the story alternates between the two POVs,’ states the author, who dwells in Wenatchee, a city in north-central Washington.
She explains, ‘Chloe Carp, daughter of Sallea Valley’s conservative mayor, is an open lesbian. As her father is running for re-election, Chloe must put aside her own political views in order to keep out of trouble. Ash Martin, on the other hand, is the bad girl of Sallea High. She likes her reputation and doesn’t seem to have any friends. Is it all an act, or is she as bad as the rumours say? What happens when the Mayor’s daughter and the town rebel cross paths one night? Will their lives change for the better, or will their greatest fears come true?’
Inspired by Rick Riordan
When we ask her if she flies by the seat of pants, Emma CrowE says she often writes out a detailed outline before putting pen to paper. ‘I take the time to develop character arcs, the setting, and several rising action plot points,’ she tells us.
And does she have any authors that she derives inspiration from? Says the author, ‘I have several favourite authors in varying genres. One of my childhood favourites is Rick Riordan. The way he built such complex worlds in his books inspired me to write my own stories. I may not write fantasy as he does, but his creativity helped foster my own.’
Write Here, Write Now
While Emma CrowE tends to write every day if she is working on a particular story, including what she calls ‘tough days’, she makes it clear that inspiration strikes at different times. ‘So I end up writing down a lot of notes throughout the day. Sometimes I find myself waking up in the middle of the night with quotes or pieces of a new character,’ she shares with us.
Stressing that becoming an author was what she was meant to do, the author, who feels it takes a lot of time-management skills and pre-planning to juggle all her tasks, emphasises that she doesn’t think she could stop being a writer even if she wanted to. ‘It is difficult to be an indie author. Self-publishing, nonetheless, was a conscious decision I made. It took a lot of thought and processing to decide to self-publish my novel,’ the author, who also tends to write on her breaks at college, lets on.
Eye on Why
As the conversation draws to a close, Emma CrowE, who can also speak German, gives us a glimpse of her personal life, stating that she enjoys reading, spending time with her family, and playing with her cat Winston. ‘I also currently have a YA Murder Mystery in the planning phase, and I plan on working on it more after the release of my debut novel,’ she shares.
And does she have something to tell budding authors? Says Emma CrowE, ‘I think it’s important to evaluate why you are writing the stories you are writing. It can be hard when a work doesn’t do well, but if that’s the story you wanted to tell then that’s the story you were meant to write.’
Be that as it may, the author, whose routine differs based on which day it is, says there are so many things she would like to change in the world. ‘The thing I would most like to change is the lack of diversity in entertainment. Many people still are unable to see themselves in the movies they watch or the books they read,’ she tells us, signing off with a smile.