Interview with Author E.L. Li – Ramona Portelli Blog

Interview with Author E.L. Li

Author E.L.L.i knew ever since she was 7 that she loved writing.  She wrote comics, screenplays, short stories, etc.  She wrote series of screenplays designed for a video game back in high school, all taking place in the same fictional universe. In 2020, she decided to rewrite those massive projects in the form of fantasy novels. The ideas, characters, and main plot lines she came up with have existed for more than a decade. She grew very attached to my work over the years and has had ups and downs during her journey as a writer, whether it was dealing with imposter syndrome or the fear of having people see her work. Today, she is proud to have her debut novel set for release on February 8th, 2022.

Writing is a life-long passion of mine and she’s always thinking about her work, whether it’s ways to improve or ideas that she’s come up with. Her day-to-day life is spent working with media and entertainment, as she works full-time as an animation engineer in the video game industry. Outside of writing and her job, she loves to bake, explore new places, travel, analyze media, play video games, watch shows and movies, and read of course.

Tell me more about your latest book

My book takes inspiration from Percy Jackson, Marvel Cinematic Universe, and Avatar: The Last Airbender. It is a science fantasy Young Adult novel and the first in my debut trilogy.

Here is my blurb:

For the first time in several millennia, nations set aside their differences. Only an interplanetary level threat could simmer down any tensions between leaders. Peace has never been eternal. Throughout the Mortal Realm, powerful bloodlines, clans, and royal families stepped up to save their worlds from the brink of destruction. Past heroes had plenty of living descendants with exclusive powers.

Annually, mortals aged five to six take an examination to determine if they’d possess inherent capabilities, such as heat immunity or the ability to travel at the speed of light, which would grant them the privilege of becoming trained Agents. Lumière Inc. placed those with potential into teams, training them for more than a decade.

Agents were symbols of hope. Decades passed, however, and cynicism rose. Morale needed a boost. Dream Teams formed, one being: Skye, Shadow, and Zephyr’s. With bloodshed and shattered dreams recorded throughout history, they can only hope their fates won’t face inevitable doom. First step in saving the Realm: track down the root cause of the rising everlasting darkness.

What was the most challenging aspect of writing this book?

The editing stages were by far the most difficult. The first draft took me two months to write, but I was stuck in the editing stages for basically four times as long. I went through countless revisions and in the process, I often questioned myself about my work and struggled with imposter syndrome. When you stare at what you’ve created for so long, you get creator blindness and it’s hard to form an objective viewpoint. I consider myself to strive to make my book the best it can be and that added onto the cycle.

What is your normal procedure to get your books published?

First, get the ideas out there. Outline and write the first draft. Revise as needed. Get beta-readers and revise. Hire an developmental editor. Revise again. Collect any other feedback as necessary. Get a line editor. Revise. Get a copy editor. Revise. Finalize and format. Upload, and you’re done.

Do you view writing as a kind of spiritual practice?

I think of writing as second-nature. It comes naturally to me.

How many books have you written so far?

So far, I only have one book written, which is Realm of Hope.

What’s the best way to market your books?

Personally, I believe TikTok is the best way. I have the highest following there out of all of my social media accounts. TikTok is where most of my audience is at and a lot of readers who are actively looking for books are going to be searching there.

How hard or easy is it to establish and maintain a career in writing?

Having a writing career is a matter of balance. You can choose to do whatever you wish with it, but as an author, we strive to spread the word. Being an author also means being a marketer, a small-business owner, and entrepreneur, a social media manager, etc. It’s a lot to deal with at once, especially as someone who doesn’t write full time. I usually dedicate at least a few hours a day to my work, whether it’s actually writing, networking, blogging, or marketing.

What is your advice for aspiring writers?

Write the type of book YOU would want to read. Don’t write for anyone else or for the sake of catering to a market. Passion goes a long way and readers can tell if you are not passionate enough about your work. And don’t sacrifice your hard work for your ego.

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