This week, we’re back with another interview from the lovely K.M. Vanderbilt
Intro: What’s your name, what do you write, where can readers find you on social media? And just for fun, if you could be any mythological being, what or who would you be?
I am K.M. Vanderbilt. I write dark fantasy…mostly.
I can be found on
I always get cast as the elf when my friends pick for me, but picking for myself…I’d probably be a goblin. Well…a goblin from MY universe. I think they’re boss. Wiry little cusses with some amazing abilities and they can move through a lot of different societies despite the flak they get.
- What got you interested in writing?
I don’t remember an inciting incident, to be honest. Looking back…it was probably reading. My mom read me bedtime stories up until I learned to read for myself. After that, I always had a book in hand and started scribbling stories as soon as I learned how to write.
- When did you become SERIOUS about writing?
Huh. Well, that would have been about three years ago, I guess. I finally finished a manuscript that had been bugging me for a decade and decided I wanted to do the real-deal-writing-thing. Haven’t looked back.
- What inspired your book?
My current series was inspired by a what-if. What if gods of all these ancient mythos existed in the same space? What would that look like? It’s kind of spiraled into an entire ‘verse, which is time-consuming, but a lot of fun to build from the ground up.
- What is the book about?Errant Tides was officially published on May 20th, BUT…as it’s the newest, I’ll just gush about it. So…in a nutshell, it’s about drow pirates. Out of a nutshell, it’s a lot of fuckery. Can I say fuckery? Maybe just make that shenanigans. Shenanigans is good. It follows four perspectives from different worlds and how these characters face life-changing struggles. It’s dark; it’s dirty. I hope it makes people cry. *shifty eyes*
- What are the characters like?
That’s loaded. Uhh…so I’d say Selgetorn is Broody McBrooderson with a side of anger issues. Invidia is an ice-cold assassin with deep-seated morals. Gelfein is a coward struggling to find his place in the world. And Lleu? Well…Lleu is…deeply protective, proud, and his emotions run deep despite how he tries to hide them.
- Who should pick up your book and why?
It’s for an adult audience. If they like fantasy and trope-flipping with a heavy sprinkle of blood, guts, and gore…definitely for them.
- Favorite quote from your own work?
Geez. Um…hmm. I tend to hate my own work. Maybe this one, though:
“We do not communicate in the way of words and tongues, Priestess,” she explained as she poured something into a cup. “We speak in absolutes, touching the very soul of things. We deal in life and death, services and payment.”
- Traditional or Self-publishing? Why?
Self-publishing. I wanted control over my own work, schedule, and subject matter.
- If you could only write in one genre for the rest of your life what would it be and why?
Like…umbrella-wise, the fantasy genre. Hands down. There’s a lot of variety therein, and I can draw inspiration from the weirdest stuff. I’d never run out of subject matter.
- Name one book that affected the way you write?
Hmmm…the WAY I write has kind of evolved into its own thing, but back when I started trying to improve, I was probably channeling Melanie Rawn’s style from The Exiles Trilogy. It’s not a SINGLE book, but the style is cohesive for the two books that were published.
- Three authors you recommend and why?Another hard one. Okay, all-time favorite is David Farland. Dude is legendary. Loved his world building and just the way he can build a picture in your head. Kate Elliott is also amazing. Another I love for world-building, but her characters are just so well-crafted as well. And…off the beaten path of trad pubbers, Jeffrey Cook. His stories are so entertaining, and there’s a lot of different genres to choose from. His range is enviable. No, seriously…I wanna be like Jeff one of these days. [insert wistful sigh here.]
- If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
For-profit healthcare. Does that count? Well…it should.
- What do you believe is your main purpose/motivation as a writer?
I want to make people FEEL. I want to help them step outside of their lives to become a pirate, a priestess, a sentinel…a god. My main purpose as a writer is to make people forget about reality while they’re reading my books.
- What’s your favorite writing-related memory?
My first review. I had convinced myself I was writing crap and it wasn’t worth the time and effort. I got my first review—glowing—and just kind of melted for a minute. That single moment made me want to do it all over again despite the frustration involved with the process.
- What’s a favorite moment you’ve had with a fan/someone who’s read your work?
Fan art! I handed off Errant Tides to a new beta reader and she loved it so much she decided to draw the main and secondary characters. It was…epic. I’m not a woo-girl in the traditional sense…but I totally woo’d.
- One fun fact most people don’t know about you?
I can lick my own nose.
- One piece of advice you would give to new writers?
Never trust a fart. Seriously, though, there’s all kinds of advice out there; none of it is absolute. The best thing I can say is this: don’t give up. Keep writing. You can’t do much with it if you don’t finish anything, right? Right!
Thank you for the great interview K.M!Errant Tides is available now! Don’t forget to follow her on:
As always, keep making magic, word weavers!