MAIAM came late this month, but it seems appropriate after ringing in the new year. But what better way to start a new year than by discovering a new indie author. Azaaa Davis writes urban fantasy and her Demon Hunter series has already begun.
First things first, what’s the name of your current book?
This Time is my debut fantasy novel and it was published on 10/01/2018.
New ideas are always cropping up. Give me your best book title that doesn’t have a story.
I’m the worst at coming up with book titles! The titles I’ve brainstormed sound like they belong in the contemporary romance or erotica section. Unfortunately, I write fantasy.
Words are kind of our thing. What’s your favorite word?
My husband is the only person I know that says, “Outstanding!” sincerely. I think it’s cute. Reading the word can make me think of him and smile.
Some people need the light of day to function and others prefer the quiet of night. When do you write?
I’m a night owl and this was reinforced when I was waking up to nurse my baby girl throughout the night. It wrote This Time at night when my family was blissfully asleep.
Names really help set a mood. What’s your process for picking people and place names?
I have a unique name. Azaaa is Arabic and means “to console.” To show appreciation to the many names that Americans might consider “different,” “weird,” or “foreign,” I think of the meaning first and then I find a name to match. I like knowing that my characters have names that hint at their personality or fate.
Even finishing a scene feels like a reason to throw a party. Have a favorite way to celebrate finishing a project?
I reward myself all the time for victories big and small. Because my family eats home-cooked meals regularly, I like dining out to celebrate big moments in life. For the smaller ones, like finishing a scene or chapter, I simply tell my husband and he kisses me.
We know writing is primarily a creative endeavor. Tell me something you never expected to get from writing.
I’ve developed a deeper understanding about what motivates people. I’ll admit that my background in social work helps because many of my college courses were about human behavior. Putting yourself in the mind of all of the characters you create really forces you to think about the goals and motivations that can influence each person’s actions and words. As a writer, I’ve reconnected with my more empathetic side.
Tell the truth. How many notebooks and journals do you own?
I rarely use the notebooks and journals that I own. I mainly type up my thoughts since paper is so easily damaged or lost in my house.
Writers keep their eyes open for inspiration, which makes us notice a lot more than most. What random piece of everyday beauty do you love?
How people say goodnight to each other says a lot about the closeness of their relationship. Is it a distracted, “okay, later,” or is it a softly whispered “sweet dreams” said with a smile? I’m trying to include little actions that speak loudly into my stories as much as possible.
As much as we love to write, some parts of being a writer can be a chore. What’s your most tempting distraction?
I watch way too much Gordon Ramsay tv shows when I should be writing. I think it will simply be background noise but I get sucked into the drama, even the reruns.
We indies need to stick together. Any indie writers on your radar right now?
I’ve placed your book, A Smuggler’s Path, at the top of my to-be-read pile! I’ve also recently read and reviewed the young adult, fantasy novel Dreg by Bethany Hoeflich.
Thanks for participating in MAIAM day and a special thanks for adding my book to your TBR pile! I hope we can have you back for a follow-up interview when the next book in your Demon Hunter series. It was great learning more about you!