Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Katie Licavoli is an aspiring writer who split her time growing up between the DFW metroplex and a small town in the “thumb” of Michigan. She has since lived in various states. I guess you could call her a bit of a vagabond.
When not typing away on her latest writing projects she enjoys spending time in the great outdoors, practicing improving her yoga moves, or diving into her latest read (… preferably alongside a good cup of tea.)
Katie currently works as a part-time librarian, part-time freelance writer in Kansas with her husband and 20-pound orange rescue cat named M.G. She has a small collection of published short fiction and creative nonfiction, and in April 2019 she released her debut New Adult Novelette Vengeful Hearts with BTGN out of Washington.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My debut short new adult book, Vengeful Hearts, tells a story about a young girl who gets wrapped up in a bad situation while she’s living on her own for the first time. I think many of us go through a phase in our lives where we may not know exactly who we are. We’re young, naïve, maybe a bit wild, and stumbling our way through life. Vengeful Hearts was inspired by throwing a big “what if” into that confusing time of unruly emotions, independence, and new encounters with people who come from all different walks of life.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Sometimes I’ll read my sentences out loud while I’m typing them… but I don’t know if this is really all that unusual? I didn’t do that when I first began writing, and it doesn’t happen all the time. But over the last year, I’ve begun to. I think since I do a lot of reading out loud when I go back to edit a section of my writing, my mind might have sneakily started doing this as a “first round, subconscious editing kind of thing?” … Huh. When I just read that back, I suppose it does seem a bit unusual.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
When I was a kid, I really got involved in C. S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia. My friends and I even used to create our own “Narnia” world in the woods out back my grandparent’s house. Letting my imagination run free like that was the most wonderful feeling growing up, and I think that’s maybe even what helped push me toward a more creative profession. I loved the world he created and the adventures the characters would go on. When I opened those books and read those stories, I felt like anything was possible. It was like I was right there alongside the characters losing myself in a different world for a while.
What are you working on now?
I’m about 20,000 words into writing the sequel to Vengeful Hearts. I thought the story was over… but turns out my characters have a lot more to say.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Truthfully? I’m still learning the best way to promote books. Along with myself. Yikes. I’m a new writer and as with any profession there’s definitely a learning curve involved. What I am finding out is that the world really is my (and your) oyster. Especially for writers. There’s a lot of opportunities out there. We just have to have the drive and passion to chase after them.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Research, write and read. That’s the best advice I can give. There’s so much to learn as a writer but boy is it exciting to do so. We have abundant amounts of information available at our fingertips, and there’s A LOT to learn. Since I decided to dive full-blown into the wonderful world of writing I’ve been doing my best to devour as much information as I can. Sometimes I feel like I still know nothing, but when I look back at where I started two years ago I can see how much I’ve already learned and it’s a great feeling. Also… make sure you still make time to actually write during all that research, reading and learning. It’s easy to get caught up in “promote, promote, promote!” But if you have nothing to promote, then what’s the point?
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
I don’t mean to sound morbid… but what I’m about to tell you really is some of the best advice I ever heard. I had someone once say to me: “In the end, everyone dies. People will be sad, but there’re a lot of parts of your life they won’t care about. Like, for instance, you working at a job you hated for years. Why not do what you really want to do while you’re here?”
Hearing this bitter and harsh truth oddly enough made me feel at ease. When I first decided to switch into a writing career the responsible side of my brain was having a tough time with it. I felt like I’d be disappointing a lot of people, and for me, that was hard. But hearing this advice given by somebody very close to me helped to take the pressure off.
What are you reading now?
I’m reading two books at once… last week I was reading three. This is the problem with working at a library! As soon as I see a book I’ve been wanting to read come in I’m like a kid in a candy shop. I must have it. So right now I’m balancing some dark fiction with an inspiring non-fiction. I’m reading The Stand by Stephen King along with Just Kids by Patti Smith. They are both wonderful.
What’s next for you as a writer?
My focus right now is to continue growing as a writer. I want to read more, write better, write faster (don’t we all?), and learn as much as I can about the writing industry. I’ve been working as a part-time freelance writer for a little over a year now and that has been such an invaluable learning experience. I’ll keep working towards developing further there, and within the next year I’m planning to release the sequel to Vengeful Hearts… fingers crossed.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
1. Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson: For bravery, because it’s an adventure book. Also, it seems fitting.
2. Outdoor Survival Skills by Larry Dean Olsen: For practicality, because I’ll likely want to up my survival skills while on a deserted island.
3. Bossypants by Tina Fey: For a good laugh in case I get a little disheartened while I’m all by my lonesome. This book really had me laughing out loud at a few parts.
4. Middlemarch by George Eliot: For killing time. I’ve never read this book although it’s been on my “want to read” list for a while, and from what I hear it’s a real thinker. I’m guessing I’d have plenty of time to read, think and thoroughly contemplate this book while stranded.