Interview1. What inspired this book?
I often joke that I write science fiction because I’ve been a Star Wars fan since I was 7 years old! But seriously, I’ve loved the sci-fi genre my entire life, so when I finally started writing fiction, I knew this is where I would start. When I want to be inspired, to play with possibilities, to ask what if, and then create brand new worlds where I can explore the answers, my imagination goes straight to sci-fi. For me, this genre is also a place to consider serious, meaningful issues in a different context, slightly removed from the real world.
With Horizon, I had two distinct parts of a story floating in my head. The first was the crash sequence. It was more basic at the time of its inception – just a young man who crash-lands on a planet, and a young woman, in some kind of trouble, who saves his life. The second part was more complex. I was playing with the idea of what would happen if one segment of an already small isolated population evolved differently (either naturally or by design) from the other. What if some had gifts that enabled them to imagine a different kind of future for themselves and their world? What if they were empathic and could sense each other’s emotions and thoughts? What if some of them could heal with their mind? How would the unchanged people feel about their neighbors? It created such an interesting premise I knew I had to find a way to make it into a story.
2. What was the most difficult part about working on this book?
From a craft point of view, I really loved writing the action scenes and some of the more intense dialogue sequences. Those came easily to me. My challenge was, and still is, world building without info dumping. I generally have to toss everything on the page and then, through the editing process, work to subtly weave in crucial information and descriptions rather than knock readers over the head with it.