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IR Approved Author Katherine Villyard Tells All About Her Book

Love Stories received a 4+ star review, making it an IndieReader Approved title.

Following find an interview with author Katherine Villyard.

What is the name of the book and when was it published?

Love Stories. I published it on Halloween, 2022.

What’s the book’s first line?

When I got home, I found a statement from my retirement account in the mailbox and an eviction notice taped to my front door.

What’s the book about? Give us the “pitch”.

Love Stories is a collection of seven previously published and five previously unpublished short stories centered on a theme of love. Mur Lafferty purchased three of them when she was the editor of Escape Pod, and we all know Mur rocks the house! As for the love, not all of it is romantic, but I felt like the things we do for love was a recurring theme in my work.

What inspired you to write the book? A particular person? An event?

Oh, it’s hard to answer this question because it’s a short fiction collection! A lot of things inspired me. “Book of Shadows” and “In the Water” were both inspired by incredibly vivid dreams. “Grandfather Paradox” was inspired by the classic Time Travel paradox and my wondering why someone would want to kill their own grandfather. “Saving Alan Idle” and “In Sickness and in Health” are both me wondering at what point does a program or construct transcend their programming and become a person. “La Divina Commedia” was inspired by a friend undergoing some personal difficulties, and how surprisingly painful I found his problems, and my feeling like the only thing that might make it worse would be if I were dating him. And “Underworld” is about my mother’s death. I can keep going, but there are a lot of stories here…

Oh, and in “Toads and Roses,” I’m the toad sister and I got the better end of the bargain. Go, Toads!

What’s the main reason someone should really read this book?

Because it has a lot of good stories in it! Also, since it’s a short fiction collection, you can pick it up and put it down and not lose your place. 😀 Great for your commute, or the doctor’s office, or anywhere else where you expect to be interrupted.

What’s the most distinctive thing about the main character?  Who-real or fictional-would you say the character reminds you of?

This is another question that’s hard to answer for a short fiction collection! I’ve heard people compare Robbie and Alan to Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation. The episode “The Measure of a Man” covered some similar themes.

When did you first decide to become an author?

I jokingly answer this question on my website in my long version author bio, but… I started writing in elementary school. I considered writing a hobby until some of my online friends started selling stories to short fiction markets, and I said, “Oh hey, I can do that.” I’m thinking primarily of the exceptional Jennifer Pelland, who is amazing and you should absolutely read her books if you haven’t.

Is this the first book you’ve written?

It’s a short fiction collection and I think the question is using the world “book” to mean “novel,” so…? This is my first published book, although I’ve published individual short stories before. I’m working on my first novel right now, so stay tuned!

What do you do for work when you’re not writing?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, I work in IT. 😀 Specifically, I’m a database administrator and system administrator/site reliability engineer. I wrote websites for a living from 1995 to 2002, when I fled screaming into system and database administration. Come visit me at Server Fault!

Would you go traditional if a publisher came calling?  If so, why?

Absolutely, although as someone with an art degree, I’m picky about covers and giving up control of my cover would be physically painful. That said, it might be nice to work with an actual marketing department—something I don’t consider one of my strengths. My non-writing strengths lie more in creating my website, wrestling Scribus to the ground and forcing it to make my book interior pretty, and similar technical things.

Which writer, living or dead, do you most admire?

I’m a huge fan of Lyda Morehouse/Tate Halloway. Everyone should run out and read Lyda’s AngeLINK books! Lyda is my favorite living author; James Tiptree, Jr./Raccoona Sheldon/Alice Sheldon is my favorite nonliving author.

I’m also loving Tamsyn Muir and Leigh Bardugo right now. <3

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