Meet the lovely Alicia Rades


Hi Alicia! Can you tell us a little about your latest book?
Fire in Frost is my first full-length novel. It's a young adult paranormal about 15-year-old Crystal Frost. Crystal thinks she's going crazy when she starts seeing the ghost of a girl who died a year ago, but she soon comes to realize that her abilities are real--and that her mom is psychic, too! When people start coming to her for help, she has to figure out how to use her abilities to help them all while trying to keep anyone else from finding out.

What inspired you to write it?
I've always been interested in the young adult paranormal genre. Fire in Frost was actually a NaNoWriMo project (that took over a year of revising!). When I chose to participate in National Novel Writing Month, I knew I wanted to write in the YA paranormal genre, and this is the story that emerged.

How did you come up with the idea for the cover?

I don't remember! I drew up a mock cover for my designer, and she really made it come to life, but I can't remember where the initial idea for the eyes and crystal ball came from.

If it was made into a movie, who would you like to play the main characters?
That's a tough one. I actually investigated this a while back so I could create a "cast of characters," but I ended up creating my cast out of stock image models because I had a hard time finding actresses and actors who are the right age and have the right "look" for my characters. If it was a movie, I think it'd be made up of new actors no one has really heard of before. (Here's the link to my cast of characters)

Is it part of a series or is it a stand-alone novel?
It works as it's own novel. You won't have to go on to read the other books to see how the story ends, but I am writing two other books using the same characters.

Where is the novel set and why did you choose to set it there?
It's set in the fictional town of Peyton Springs in southern MN. I chose southern MN because that's where I was born and I'm familiar with the area. I made up my own town because I didn't want to have to get super technical with real places. This way, I could describe the town and businesses however I imagined.

What is it about this genre that appeals to you so much?
I'm a sucker for YA paranormal. That and YA dystopian is pretty much all I read. I love the pace of the stories. They're not too long, but it's not like you're rushing through the story, either. I also love the creativity and out-of-the-box thinking that paranormal authors come up with. It's so cool that you can create your own world out of the unknown.

What made you want to become an author?
I've always been a writer. Since I was 8 years old, I'd write poetry and short stories, and my teachers were constantly encouraging me to keep writing. When I was 17, I became a freelance writer. I didn't really get into long-form fiction writing until I was 19. I surround myself with writer friends, so when I saw them writing fiction, I decided that I really wanted to be a part of that.

How do you come up with character names?
Sometimes I use a Google search to browse through names until one feels right. Other times, I take the first name that comes to mind, and if that doesn't feel right, I'll change it. At first, I was going to name Crystal Charlotte and have everyone call her Charlie, but as I started writing, it just didn't feel right, so I changed it.

Name one of your all-time favourite books?
I absolutely love "The Seer" series by Linda Joy Singleton. It's what sparked my interest in the paranormal genre.

Who, or what, inspires you?
Pretty much every author who crosses my path inspires me! When I read books, I get this feeling like, "Dang, this is good. I wonder if I could write something this good." Just seeing other people's successes helps push me forward as I realize that things like being an author is possible.
I have to say that Linda Joy Singleton has really inspired me, though. Last summer, I flew out west to visit family and then drove 12 hours (one way) just to have lunch with her. She's so sweet about answering my questions and encouraging me to keep writing. I own every one of her books in print, and a dozen or so of them are signed!

Where is your favourite place to write?
I do most of my fiction writing right on my living room couch! I'd love to write outside, but I have such a tough time seeing my computer screen then.

What is your favourite movie that was based on a book?
That's a tough question because I don't tend to play favorites with movies. :) Although I've only seen it once, I have to say that I really enjoyed the movie "Safe Haven." While the book was very well done, I actually liked the movie better.

Name two of your favourite authors.
Linda Joy Singleton and Emerald Barnes.

Tell us a random fact about yourself.
I graduated high school early.

Who would play you in the movie about your life?
Toronto International Film Festival via photopin (license)
People tell me I look like Rachel McAdams (pictured), and I think she'd do a great job portraying my personality, so that'd be pretty cool if she played me, although she's quite a bit older than me.

Tell us an interesting fact about where you live.
The nearest Wal-Mart is 45 minutes away.

What are your (writing) plans for the future?
It's my goal to continue making writing my full-time job (which it is, just not fiction writing). For my book plans, I have two more books in progress for the Crystal Frost series, and then I'll be working on a stand-alone novel (also YA supernatural/paranormal with a bit of scifi). Mostly, I just want to wait and see where my writing takes me and hope that's somewhere good. :)

Tell us one thing that's on your bucket list.
Visit the Redwood National Forest.

Favourite myth / fairytale?
I can't say that I have one...

Who/What did you want to be when you were a kid?
Honestly, when I was little, I used to wish I was Pocahontas. :) In 6th grade, I was really into being an author, but for most of my life, I thought I was going to be a nurse.

Alicia Rades has always had a passion for writing and wrote her first poem when she was 8. Although most of her writing continued as poetry and eventually as song writing, she wrote a few short stories along the way. In 2010, Alicia began freelance writing, creating blog posts and other online content. Today, she is a freelance writer, blogger, and editor who lives in Wisconsin with her husband. When inspiration strikes, she's also an author who loves exploring YA paranormal ideas.

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