R. M. Archer is a YA speculative fiction author who I met through social media. She is a homeschool senior with a worldview colored by her faith. Read our interview below to learn more about this inspiring writer and editor.
Q) You have an up and coming release of four short stories. Would you be willing to share more information on the individual stories and/or the release?
A) Absolutely! This is a new edition of a collection I published two years ago. Back then, it contained two sci-fi stories and two fantasy stories; now it contains the same two sci-fi stories (one heavily revised), a contemporary story, and a brand new fantasy story.
The sci-fi stories both take place in a future version of Earth, and both have connections to a fictional company called Grantech that appears in most of my sci-fi. One is about a character Grantech wants to steal powers from, and the other is about a group of students who are forced into an escape room as a recruitment test.
The contemporary story was originally an experiment. I tend to write a lot of dialogue, so I wanted to see how much emotion and information I could convey without conversation, and I was really happy with the results. The setting was born from the song Carnival Hearts by Kayla Diamond, and it was really fun to write. The fantasy story takes place in a world called Deseran, which I’m super excited to share with readers. I’ve been fascinated with non-European-inspired fantasy for a couple of years, and especially with desert fantasy, and this world was born of that. This story–Caithan–was a really cool opportunity to explore a little corner of Deseran and get to know some of the characters who live there and the issues they face, especially with clashing cultures.
Q) Do you have a favorite story from the collection of short stories? Why or why not?
A) I like most of them for one reason or another. Silence is less special to me at this point, but Escape Room is cool because I’ve brought it so far from where it started, Carnival Hearts was a fun style to write and I loved stretching out of my comfort zone, and Caithan–really any story I set in Deseran–is a sort of passion project for me.
Q) What are your favorite things to write about?
A) Ooh. Relationships are super important to me. I love showing different types of relationships, and especially family relationships. I also love writing about fantastical worlds and creating new cultures and races and that kind of thing. And I enjoy tackling important issues through the lens of other worlds and characters who don’t have the same cultural expectations that we do.
Q) What inspires you to write?
A) Small-scale, everything inspires me. Random people I see in the grocery store, historical events I’m reading about in school… Once I had a whole conversation in my head between two fictional politicians that was inspired by dishcloths.
In general, though, there are a few driving forces. The earliest reason was just as an outlet for my imagination; I love to create, and writing allows for near-infinite creative freedom. Now, though, there’s also a desire to expose truths through storytelling, whether it’s something more religious like the idea of grace or something more social like the importance of family relationships and community.
Q) Are there religious undertones in your writing?
A) It depends on how you define “religious undertones.” My faith colors my entire worldview, so in that sense all of my work has religious undertones because all of my themes are built from a Christian perspective. As far as more overt Christian themes or references, it depends on the project. Most of my projects don’t have direct Christian ties or allegory, but I do have other projects featuring prominent Christian characters (or the fantasy equivalent).
Q) How has God impacted you and your writing?
A) God has impacted me in sooo many ways. I wouldn’t be at all the person I am today without Him. He’s taught me grace, He’s lifted me out of depression, He’s given me courage to speak up… I owe everything to Him.
As far as my writing is concerned, He’s informed the themes of a lot of my books, and I try to turn to Him when I’m stuck in my writing. I’m still very imperfect at involving Him in my writing, though, and that’s something I’m aiming to work on this year.
Q) What are your plans for your writing?
A) I’d like to make a part-time career out of it. I’m still a long way from that point, but I have so many novels I’d love to put out once I have the resources to polish them to a professional level, and someday I’d love to be able to publish consistently.
Q) What advice do you have for other writers?
A) Assuming you’re looking to make a career of writing, make writing a habit. Take it seriously. You can’t produce (or polish) material consistently enough to make a living off of it if you’re not writing and revising consistently, so find a schedule that works for you and stick to it.
Q) How can readers access your stories once they are released?
A) They’ll be available in both ebook and print format on Amazon. The ebook is actually available for pre-order now at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B083H33Y5C
Be sure to pre-order the collection at the link above and follow R. M. Archer on social media!
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/RysaArcher
- Instagram: https://instagram.com/rysaarcher
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/rysaarcher
- Blog: rmarcher.com