10 Simple Questions – Bellator Edition – A. L. Butcher

August 1, 2014 at 3:06 am (fantasy, Links, writing) (, , , , , )

Next up in my Bellator spotlight is half of a dynamic writing duo, A. L. Butcher:

1) Who are you?

Hi, and thanks for spotlighting me today. I am Alexandra Butcher (A. L .Butcher), British fantasy author, born in the Southeast of England but currently living in the Southwest.


2) What have you written and in particular, what have you written for Bellator?

To date I have two novels published as part of an adult dark fantasy/fantasy romance series – the Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles and an anthology of short mythic stories set in the same world. Plus several poems and short stories in other anthologies.  My Bellator story, which was co-written with my friend and fellow writer Diana Wicker, is ‘Outside the Walls’. It is a fantasy tale of war, love and determination.


3) I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but why do you write?

Yes I’ve been asked that before.  Why do I write? Because I’ve always written and made up people and places. At school I was always writing poems and stories and I suppose you could say I was a creative child. I get bored easily and tend to drift off to more interesting places…


More than this I write the stories in my head that want to be told.  I write because I enjoy it and because it keeps me sane (ish).


4) Do you have a preferred theme or topic?  Are warriors your typical thing?

I write fantasy, mostly fantasy romance but also mythic fantasy. My work has been described as gritty. The novels deal with themes like slavery and freedom, love and battle and, of course, heroes. What does it mean to be a hero?  Why do the characters do what they do when others sit back and do nothing?


The short stories are a mixed bag indeed. I have a small collection about the Kitchen Imps – tiny, very mischievous creatures who cause all sorts of mayhem, including stealing socks from the washing machine. Tales of Erana is a collection of mythic tales of past times, featuring gods, lonely mortals, magic, war and love.  There will be further mythic tales in future months.


Are warriors my typical thing? Not really, both the main characters for the novel are magic users (in a world where magic is illegal).  Warriors and heroes are as old in storytelling as stories themselves, but I guess there is the question of definition – how does one define a warrior – are we talking about armour, swords and shields or those who strive in war? I’d say heroes are my typical ‘thing’ if that makes sense.


5) Are you a pantser or a plotter and why?

Most definitely a pantser. I know the beginning and the end of the story (usually) but the middle is negotiable. I have tried to plan, but I always end up changing it vastly. I have an overarching plan for the series and lots of notes with ideas, past events, character profiles etc.


6) What do you like most about writing?

Creating new worlds! Being in charge of the lives of these characters and the events which befall them.


7) What challenges you the most about writing?

I am a terrible procrastinator, so actually getting as much done as I’d like when it needs to be done. I get distracted easily so I do spend far too much time on Facebook or Goodreads. 😉


8) Who or what inspires you most?

I usually get ideas at awkward times, like when I’m in the bath or cycling to work.  I get inspired by stories – mine or sometimes other peoples. I get a lot of inspiration chatting over ideas with Diana.


9) What are your plans for the future?

Book III of the Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles will, hopefully, be published by the end of the year. Also I have a couple of fun fantasy tales in the forthcoming Wyrd Worlds II – a free spec fic anthology by a collection of sci-fi and fantasy authors. I’m involved with the Indie Collaboration as well, so look out for those.


There will definitely be further books in the Chronicles, plus at least one more Tales of Erana.  I am also working on another project with Diana. I’d like audio books for all of them too.


10) Why Bellator?

Mia knows Diana, and mentioned a charity anthology earlier in the year. Our story didn’t really fit that one – as there was no other fantasy so when she said about Bellator it was a perfect fit. I’ve written for anthologies before so I was happy to help and this charity is something I support – my parents were both Armed Forces folk and my father has a disability caused in war so, although this isn’t supporting a British charity it is a cause close to my heart.  I am delighted to be part of this.

Find more of A. L.’s work here:

Light Beyond the Storm – Book I Link Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Light-Beyond-Storm-Chronicles–ebook/dp/B0088DQO9C

Shining Citadel Amazon http://www.amazon.com/The-Shining-Citadel-Chronicles-ebook/dp/B00D4CF6W8

Tales of Erana Amazon http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JCHQWJK Audio . http://www.audible.com/pd/Sci-Fi-Fantasy/Tales-of-Erana-Audiobook/B00LB8WH0G/

All the links can be found here, along with various author, character and reader interviews:



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