Huge thanks to the lovely Leisl Leighton for agreeing to give an interview today. A multiple award-winning writer with big vision, she chats about vampires, restaurants and inter-galactic plots...
Leisl, how did you get started as a writer?
I used to run a theatre restaurant but it wasn't a great job to do and have a family, so I gave that up to have my kids. I needed something creative to do, and as I'd written scripts before, I thought I'd give writing novels a go. It started off as a hobby, but after completing a few books, I realised it wasn't a hobby anymore, it was something I wanted to do seriously, so I did some research and began to submit. I got some interest but not a final 'yes' until I met Anne Gracie and she asked to look at my rejection letters and translate them and told me I must join RWA and go in comps and get a critique partner and join some writing groups as this career of writing is hard enough to do without the support of people who truly understand. So I did all that and it led me to my first publishing contract in 2014.
What has been your proudest moment?
I don't think I have one. This is a very up and down career and there have been moments along the way that I have cruised the highs and then sunk to the depths of lows, sometimes in the space of one day. I think if I'm proud of anything it's my perseverance and the fact I just keep trying and learning and doing.
Who's your favourite hero?
That's a tough one. Of the books I've had published, I think my favourite hero is a toss up between River and Adam in the Pack Bound Series (River's book is Moon Bound and Adam's is Wolf Bound). They are polar opposites as characters and both have huge journeys, which is what I think I love about them. My favourite character I've ever written is from a book I'm still working on, a 1000 year old vampire with angelic blood in a series titled Seer's Blood. His name is Gabriel - he is truly tormented and nowhere close to perfect and his path to redemption and love is epic, which is why I love him. I hope one day to finish his story and have it out in the world for people to read.
Confession time! What has been the worst thing you ever wrote?
I think it was the first thing I tried to write. It was an amazing idea and story with great characters and plots and twists and turns, but it was just too big a story for my skills at the time with multiple POV characters and huge world building across multiple time frames and planets, sub plots and even alien languages. It still plays in my mind though and I know in the future I will go back and write the story of those characters as they deserve it to be written.
I feel ten times more motivated now than I did before this! Thank you, Leisl, and more power to the alien languages!