Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Interview with Alicia Jasinska, author of The Dark Tide

1. Can you tell us a little about your book?

THE DARK TIDE is a dark, fairytale fantasy about a girl who tries to save the boy she likes from a wicked witch, only to fall
in love with the witch herself. 

Every year on St. Walpurga's Eve, Caldella's Witch Queen chooses a boy to be sacrificed on the full moon to keep the island city from sinking. When Lina's crush is chosen she insists on taking his place and Queen Eva accepts - she'll sacrifice anyone if it means saving herself and her home. 

But Lina is not at all what Eva expected, and the Queen is nothing like Lina imagined. Against their will, they find themselves falling for each other. As water floods the streets and the tide demands its sacrifice, they must choose who to save: themselves or their city. 

It's a very loose retelling of Tam Lin, set in a city inspired by the Polish legend of Wineta. At it's heart it's the dark f/f fantasy I wished for as a teen!

2. Are you working on anything new?

I'm currently working on what will *fingers crossed* be my book 2! I'm not sure how much I'm allowed to say, but it's another standalone YA fantasy, set in a new wintery and very Polish-inspired world. DARK TIDE is an enemies-to-lovers story, but this new one is very much friends-to-enemies and it's so much fun to write!

3. What’s your writing process like?

I cry a lot haha; But I also outline extensively scene by scene. I need to know exactly how the story goes right to the end before I can get started. It means at the start I'm not getting a lot of words down, which is a struggle when I see other people's word counts (I'm always having to remind myself to keep my eyes on my own page) but the tradeoff is at the end I usually have a very clean draft. I also tend to draft in sections and give them to a friend to read as I go - this really helps, because that friend then nags me for more chapters, which keeps me motivated!
4. What piece of advice would you give to aspiring authors?

Be kind to yourself❤I have to tell this to myself too! Beating yourself up because you're not where you want to be yet, or you think you haven't gotten enough words down that day, or you'll never be as good as famous author etc. It doesn't change the situation, it just makes you feel worse and sucks the joy out of writing. Take a breath, take a break, step away if you need to. Chasing a dream isn't easy and I think, at least mentally, sometimes we can make it harder for ourselves by piling on all this extra pressure. Try to treat and encourage yourself like you would a friend.

5. What are you currently reading?

I'm one of those people who can't stick to reading one book at a time, so I'm currently jumping back and forth between Erin Morgenstern's THE STARLESS SEA, Nina Varela's CRIER'S WAR, and Ryan La Sala's REVERIE. All of which are deliciously queer and lush and magical. I feel like we were spoilt with amazing books this year! 


Alicia Jasinska is a fantasy writer hailing from Sydney, Australia. A library technician by day, she spends her nights writing and hanging upside down from the trapeze and aerial hoop. Her debut YA novel THE DARK TIDE is coming from Sourcebooks FIRE (US) and Penguin Random House Australia (AUS/NZ) in June 2020. 


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