Please give a warm welcome to
Tell us a bit about yourself
I’m Cilla Raven, an indie author that published my first book back in July of 2019 and just launched the preorder for book 2 in that series about 2 weeks ago. When I’m not writing, I’m a homeschooling mother of 5 who’s been married for 15 short years, and all of them mean everything to me. I obsessively read anything I can get my hands on and write basically anything that pops in my head. However, my favorite genres to read and write are fantasy and paranormal reverse harem romances. Some other weird facts about me: if I could live in shorts, tank tops, and flip flops, I would; I don’t think there’s any such thing as too many tattoos (I have 6 so far); good music and food are essential elements for keeping me happy, and I absolutely love naps.
Have you always wanted to become an author?
I’ve always written when I could, but the idea of becoming an author was never really on the table until my husband pushed me toward it. He’d read some of my writing before and always said I could do well as an author, but I’m prone to self-doubt on a large scale, so for the longest time, I ignored his suggestions. Then, one day I just got it in my head that even if no one read what I wrote, I’d enjoy the writing, so what harm could it do? Publishing my first book was one hell of a task (well, many, many tasks, lol), but I loved every minute of it, and in doing so, I realized that being an author was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
What was your inspiration for your current book/series?
To be real, I’ve got a lot of demons in my closet. Some of which are extremely hard to deal with. My first book tackles some of those demons, as well as explores a fantasy I can only dream about in real life. It was inspired by what I wanted to read, my past, my desires, and let me imagine for a while what it would be like to live in a world with magic. Honestly, all of my stories are like this, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
What are you working on now?
Right now, I’m working on finishing up book 2 in my Beholden to Balance Series, and starting a whole different series as well. I’ve got some big plans for 2020! Releasing book 2 is the top priority, followed by the surprise series I’m working on, and finally wrapping up the year with Beholden to Balance book 3’s release in December. So, a total of like 6 books I’m planning for the year… whew, that seems like a lot when I write it out, haha.
Do you have any quirks while writing?
Yep. I have twinkly lights above my bed (where I write because sitting at a desk drives me nuts), a diffuser that releases smelly good stuff into the air around me, and I’m almost always wearing a hoodie. I like to have grabbable snacks that won’t get on my laptop within reach, and I love having the lights out while I write (it lets the twinkly ones create mood lighting, lol). Basically, the better and isolated the atmosphere, the better I write because it makes escaping into these different worlds that much easier.
What are your hopes for the future?
My hopes for the future include short- and long-term goals. Fully attainable goals as well as best-case scenario goals. Short term, I hope to finish up book 2 within the next few weeks to have it ready for release in April, as well as building up a community in my Facebook group. Long term, I hope to become a USA Today or NYT best-selling author or to see one of those orange tags on Amazon next to my name. And even if those are hefty aspirations, a girl can dream, right? Really, what it comes down to is that I want to tell all the stories that are swirling around in my head and even the new ones that pop up on almost a daily basis.
Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?
I’m still a baby author, and I’ll probably never know everything about this business, but I’ve learned a few things that might help others: Just go at your own pace and stay true to who you are, writing what you want to write. Don’t let others tell you what you should be writing, only you know the stories you want to tell. Sometimes, going hard and writing fast is excellent, but there are also times when letting the story ruminate can lead to some of your best ideas. Don’t underestimate the importance of cover art and editing! And lastly, get organized. I am not usually a very organized person, but when I started writing this series, it was painfully apparent that I needed some way to keep track of not only all the things I had going on in my schedule, but also just to keep the story correct, and on track. With a series, there are a ton of small details in those pages that readers will know by heart. You don’t want to be three books in and get somebody’s hair color wrong, lol.
Do you have anything to say to your readers?
Yes! I’ve got a lot planned out for you, and I can’t wait to hear what you think. Also, I freaking love you guys! You’ve given me so much encouragement and love, it makes my heart swell! You guys are what make it possible for me to keep writing and living this dream I didn’t think I was good enough for, and for that, I will never, ever be able to thank you enough for taking a chance on this baby author! But I’ll forever keep trying anyway: Thank you so very much!