I’ve always loved writing. Even at a very young age, I was always scribbling some story or another into a journal. I remember writing a story in pencil about a young girl covered in magical tattoos when I was about nine. Seriously, what did I know about tattoos at nine years old? Still, I remember it being a pretty interesting little story. My protagonist’s name was Xaviria (cool name, right?) and she was one tough, sassy chick. I liked my female heroines capable and clever from way back.
I wrote a ton of poetry during my teen years—for me, writing was cathartic, especially during some of those tougher teen times (first crush, peer and parent pressure, etc.,) and whenever I had any strife in my life, I just got it all out on paper. I had my first poem published when I was twelve and I won an award in a global youth writing competition when I was fifteen for a short story. The story was about a man whose daughter’s soul lived in a weeping willow, and he could only communicate with her through his violin. Even back then, my imagination had a fondness for fantasy. Over the years, the pencil may have evolved into a laptop, but writing was and still is a huge form of escapism for me.
My passion for writing stories came from reading great stories. I’ve been a voracious reader all my life, devouring pretty much anything I could get my hands on. I loved being able to dive into someone else’s life, whether it was via a pixie or a redheaded, willful orphan or a talking lion. My love affair with fantasy and science fiction began with Grimm’s Fairy Tales and continued with books like The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe, Lord of the Rings and Dune. Given that, it’s really no surprise that that’s where I feel most comfortable exploring my own writing voice. With fantasy and scifi, I love that you can construct whole worlds with elements that may not exist in real society. I like being able to create something different with interesting multi-layered characters, especially ones with those paranormal or supernatural elements. I especially like being able to redefine myself in those characters. They are all different versions of me in different worlds with infinite possibility at their fingertips. What’s not to love about that?
Still, my road to author-hood wasn’t always clear. I was passionate about it but I wasn’t sure it was … the one. So I took a bit of a hiatus after I graduated college to pursue a global sales career in corporate telecommunications for thirteen years, and I travelled the world building that career. I did pay the bills, but eventually, I realized I wasn’t satisfied. Something was missing. In response, those writing embers buried deep down started to rekindle, and I started writing the story that became Bloodspell. I remember feeling excited and terrified, but alive. It was like an epic epiphany (cue choral voices here)—this is what I was meant to do, what I was always meant to do.
I’m a writer. And that’s why I write.
Write hard or go home.
Amalie Howard grew up on a small Caribbean island where she spent most of her childhood with her nose buried in a book or being a tomboy running around barefoot, shimmying up mango trees and dreaming of adventure. She received a bachelor’s degree from Colby College in Maine in International Studies and French, and a certificate in French Literature from the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris, France. She has also lived in Los Angeles, Boston, and New York City. She has worked as a research assistant, marketing rep, global sales executive, freelance writer, and blogger. A lover of other cultures and new experiences, especially of the culinary variety, she has traveled extensively across North America and Europe, and as far east as China, Indonesia, and Australia. She currently resides in New York with her husband, three children, and one very willful cat that she is convinced may have been a witch’s cat in a past life.
Amalie Howard’s debut novel, BLOODSPELL, evolved from a short story that took on an eerie life of its own, and is undoubtedly the result of a lifelong infatuation with witchcraft, vampires, and excessive amounts of chocolate.
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