Lindsey Williams is a sci-fi, horror and fantasy writer living in sunny Florida. When she’s not writing, she’s been known to engage in numerous forms of self-torture such as participating in philosophical debates or translating things into ancient Egyptian.Some of her other hobbies include researching and/or analyzing pretty much everything to death, conducting culinary experiments, and listening to really loud heavy metal while relaxing in her pool.
- When did you first discover your love for writing?
I have always just… been a writer. Since I was a young girl, I wrote. Poems, journaling, letters, short stories, anything. I was actually that kid in school who would get excited when we had to do an essay. I’ve always found it easier to express myself through writing. It’s who I am. The rest of my family was always physically artistic- music, painting, crafty or handy things. I was horrible with all that, because writing is my medium.
- Do you have a favourite place to write?
Well, I live in Florida so it’s nice most of the year. My ‘office’ is usually my back porch. I love it. It’s a screened in pool deck where we house our orchid collection. Very peaceful. Unless the neighbor is mowing the lawn or something…
- Do you have a writing routine or process that you adhere to?
Hmm. Yes, of a sort. I have a list of ideas that I refer to, with little blurbs about the general concept. I expand upon these, one by one, into a more detailed outline. Then I work off the outline, but basically just wing it. It’s a nice compromise between organization and chaos that works for me. I need a bit of both.
- Are there any authors or specific books you aspire to?
Stephen King, Laurell K. Hamilton (though I enjoyed her books more before they became mostly focused on the ‘romantic’ aspects of the stories, shall we say), Douglas Adams, Mary Shelley, Christopher Moore, Hunter S. Thompson, Neil Gaiman. I have and will always be –and want to be- a proud weirdo. I can only hope to one day be as weird (and awesome) as these guys.
- What inspired you to write Motherhood?
Well, there were a few different inspirations for Motherhood, but as with most of my stories, it started out as an idea from a dream I had. You would laugh really, if you saw what I had initially written- it was just this one scribbled, barely discernible little line ‘something about aliens and being trapped’. I happened to decide to filter this through the lens of my own rather horrifying custody experience, which led me to the basic concept. It’s kind of crazy how I come up with my concepts, because I don’t really, they just happen, like a lightning bolt. If only the actual writing part was that easy…
But once I got started I realized I wanted to explore the darker possibilities of being a mother, the helplessness of parenthood and the despair of separation. It snowballed.
Our society is so focused on the ‘positive’, the ‘yang’, the outer world and there is this huge stigma against women having negative or even strong emotions and we’re certainly not allowed to be ambivalent about children. How far can I stretch that limit?
We’re supposed to be pure, perfect, well behaved. What if we were allowed to be whole people, and have our own darkness? What does that look like? What happens to a woman who deals with it? What’s the worst case scenario?
And there were some other social issues that I wanted to touch upon as well, while still offering an entertaining and hopefully thought-provoking story. So I hope that comes through to readers. There is a good bit of nuance to it.
- Can you tell us a little about your book?
Without giving away too much, Jess wakes up to discover she’s been abducted by aliens. Then she is forcibly inseminated and carries the child to term. She doesn’t ever expect to love the child at all, but for some reason she is able to to partake in the alien’s telepathy and so she is ultimately unable to avoid a growing connection with her son during her captivity. It’s the only relationship she has access to so she comes to depend on it. Unfortunately, this causes her even more heartache in the end. You’ll have to read it to find out the rest of what happens!
- Do you have a favourite amongst all your characters?
Well, the star of the show is obviously Jess, who is very much an anti-heroine. She really goes through a lot and as I was writing, she took on a personality of her own. It’s a pretty character driven book, focused on her experience.
- Does your book contain a message for readers to consider?
Oh, several. But I will leave it to the reader to decide what exactly the messages are.
- What would say has been your biggest challenge and achievement in writing Motherhood?
Probably getting past my own fear, finishing it, and putting it out there. I know Motherhood won’t be for everyone (and isn’t this all just one big popularity contest?) but my hope is that it will inspire people to think about the way we view certain stigmas and taboos, the way we treat things we don’t understand. I would consider it quite an achievement if Motherhood can in any way help even one person confront their own fears and limitations, question the status quo or why things are the way they are.
- What have you learned about yourself as a writer through writing Motherhood?
Writing Motherhood was an experience that solidified something that I’ve always known, in the back of my mind. I am a writer. I have somehow avoided this realization for over a decade of trying to do other things and figure out what I wanted to do with my life. About halfway through the book it just clicked into place and I literally had a moment where I was like ‘Ohhh, ok. Yes, HERE it is, here’s what I’m supposed to be doing…” and I finally realized that for me, doing anything else is a waste of my time.
- Do you have any advice for other aspiring authors?
Just keep writing! Keep going, don’t get discouraged. This is a tough business, and it’s a challenge to not let things get to you. But the rewards are worth it. Connecting with people, offering ideas and creating lives, exploring pain and beauty, love and fear, emotion, vulnerability, sharing a part of yourself- it’s truly unlike doing anything else. It’s exhilarating and amazing and terrifying all at the same time.
One of my favourite pieces of advice comes from Jaxon Wolfe (on Twitter of all places): “If you don’t write the classics of the future, then who will?”
My second favourite piece of advice is something Brian Rathbone said: “Sometimes writing involves taking a nap”.
- Anything else you would like to say?
Stay tuned! I’m just getting started. Also, the print version of Motherhood is coming soon.
- And finally, do you have any future works planned?
Tons! As I said, I’ve got a running list of ideas. There is MUCH more to come, for sure. I’m currently working on two stories, Dragonfae – a medieval style fantasy and Astralis – a futuristic action sci-fi.