On the fourth day of the Hydra blog hop, Rachel Hunter joins me. Rachel is the author or Empyreal Fate, available on Amazon.com and directly from Hydra Publications.

Hello Rachel, and thanks for joining me today! I understand that in addition to writing, you are also a full-time student studying psychology. How does your major influence your writing process? Do you find yourself psychoanalyzing your characters?

How now, Tricia? Tis a pleasure to join you today! You’ve a lovely site, and I’m thrilled to be here~

You are correct in that I am not only an author – but a full-time student as well. However, I have recently changed my major to focus on the Nursing side of things, though Psychology absolutely fascinates me and always will. (The brain is intriguing, is it not?) As to your question, I find that I do indeed psychoanalyze my characters, as I do with many of the figures I meet in “real life”. (Don’t worry, I spare judgement. I merely observe.) Characters have motivations and goals, as does anybody you meet on the street or in your work or school environment. They have personalities, desires, dreams, and – yes – their own lives. So in order to create believability in my stories, I must create believability in my characters: I must make them fully alive – to the reader and to myself. I must understand them. And to understand them, I must delve inside their mind and determine how they work: what drives them, compels them. Nobody will read a story in which the characters are two-dimensional, lead extraordinarily perfect lives, or do things so unbelievable as to go against their personality-type or do something that didn’t seem ‘quite right’. Well – there are exceptions to everything, I suppose; we all have our preferences. But to create a character, one must create a person: a true, living being. I notice little inconsistencies in action and thought, and unless they serve a purpose or ‘fit in’ with the character, my attention ebbs. Besides, psychoanalyzing is an adventure in and of itself! Who doesn’t like to gauge the psyche or create intricate patterns of hormonal webs? It’s a thing of beauty. It’s creation.

Your recent novel, Empyreal Fate, is at its core, a story of forbidden love. Most classic fantasy stories have some element of romance, but it’s rarely the central plot thread. Do you find that readers love the prominence of the romance in your book, or are they unsettled by it? 

So far, I’ve heard only positive comments about the romance aspect. In fact, with the romance genre having such a large following as it does, I find that most people are taken in by it and show further interest. Of course, I can’t read everyone’s mind, but it seems to be a positive element to Empyreal Fate that attracts readers (as well as the ‘epic fantasy’ component as well). However, I must warm you: an unsettling event does occur in the story. This I have heard mixed things about; some say it was cleverly done and moved the tale; others were indeed unsettled. It’s all a matter of preference. (Just an ‘FYI’ in case you decide to check it out.)

You’re a very young author. At a stage when many of us are still trying to figure out what we want to do when we grow up, you’re already building a successful career. Where do you see yourself in five years? 

Now this allows for all sorts of whimsical and awe-inspiring answers! I could be leaping atop the moon or hovering over Saturn; I could be dancing with the glorious fishes of the sea; I could have the glistening waters of an ocean all to myself, chanting a merry tune as I write on parchment with pens of rainbow ink…. Ah! This question invites the imagination, of which anything is possible. But if we are to return to Earth for but a moment, I would say that in five years, I will be a Registered Nurse and an author of at least another novel or two – or three. And in my book, it’s one of the more satisfying results. From there, who knows? I’m only getting my feet wet, after all. 😉

What is one thing you would love to accomplish before your 30th birthday?

Besides the obvious writing and educational goals, I hope to be able to travel abroad in the near future. Where, you may ask? Anywhere. Everywhere. The psychology of cultures is ours to observe.

I’ll keep this interview short, I know you have a lot going on! Is there anything else you’d like to share?

Well, for those of you who don’t know me, I am an author, poet, student, and jedi knight. I’ve survived the clutches of anorexia (written about in my short story, Perfect Nothing), and although I tend toward the perfectionistic side of things, I am oft times spontaneous and downright random. As an avid delver of the psyche, I often question the mysteries of this world, the meaning of life, the reason for being… I ponder why we are, why we wonder, and why we cease to be. I ask myself who I am. I look into my inner being and mesh with its many forms, for there are many.

Colors. Swirling colors and haphazard rays of thought. All revolve within a central orb that comprises our soul. This life source is what holds us; it makes us. It contains us and protects. It is a womb from which we may never part – no matter how hard we resist. This orb is within every one of us, though no two are akin. That is the beauty of it. Diversity separates us.

And I… what can I do? I can influence the world – me. I can move mountains, embrace fate, and inspire the earth. But who… who am I?

I am Rachel.

I. Am. Me.

Thanks again for joining me, Rachel

*tips hat* The pleasure is mine~

More about Empyreal Fate: Empyreal Fate

Empyreal Fate: Elves and men – on the brink of war. Love. Betrayal. Lies. Greed. An ancient evil. A dark past. Will true love conquer? Will Fate..?

Filled to the brim with forbidden love, an ancient evil, and a nation in disrepair, Empyreal Fate is a tale of riveting bravery and mortal corruption.

The land of Llathala lingers on the brink of war between men and elves, a dark history surrounding each race. Stirred by tensions of the land, a shadow of the past reemerges, taking precedence in reality and consuming the very soul of mans’ mortal weakness. Darrion, the son of a poor laborer, is ensnared in a hostile world, forced to choose between loyalty to his king or the counsel of the elves. Yet Fate has other plans in store, tying his course to Amarya, an elven royalblood of mysterious quality and unsurpassable beauty. But this forbidden connection incites betrayal from members of their own kin, marking them as traitors to the crown. In a land torn asunder, only Fate’s decree can allow such love to coexist with an ancient enmity.

Behold: A Llathalan Annal: Empyreal Fate – Part One.

So I have one question for you… Do you believe in Fate? *Second question*…. Do you dare?