Saturday 24 September 2016

4Q Interview with Guest Author Angella Cormier of New Brunswick, Canada

Angella Cormier grew up in Saint Antoine, a small town in south east New Brunswick, Canada. This is where her love of reading and writing was born. Her curious nature about everything mysterious and paranormal helped carve the inspiration for her current passion of writing horror and mystery stories. She is also a published poet, balancing out her writing to express herself in these two very opposing genres. Angella is a mother of two boys as well as an established freelancer in graphic design.

Previous titles include "Dark Tales for Dark Nights" published in 2013 (written under Angella Jacob) as well as "A Maiden's Perspective: A collection of thoughts, reflections and poetry" published in 2015.

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4Q: Your latest book is a novel in collaboration with author Pierre Arsenault and it has just recently been launched. Tell us about the novel.

AC: Oakwood Island is our first novel which ironically wasn’t supposed to be a novel at all. It began as a series of short stories written by Angella and eventually Pierre came on board.  Together they merged those original stories and added much more to complete a full novel.  Those three short stories are now part of one bigger novel about strange occurrences on the small Oakwood Island. It is a horror book with some supernatural elements.  Here is a synopsis of the book:

There are many mysterious and evil things lurking on Oakwood Island. Things so strange that the locals are left wondering if their small coastal community will ever be the same. The police are concerned when Maggie, the local waitress, shows up at their doorstep cold, weak and frail, after having escaped a kidnapper that she describes as a monster.  Her strange symptoms of a mysterious illness that seems to be growing stronger baffles her nurses and doctor. What happened to her? 

A few local residents hold some of the answers, but will they be able to save their neighbours, and better yet, do they want to?  What is watching them as they try to hide?  The residents are all part of a much bigger mystery than they realize.

The island holds many secrets, but will they come out in time to save them all? Caught between the past and the present, good and evil both find their place on the island, but which will prevail and at what cost?

What started as a few short stories grew into the much larger story of Oakwood Island.  It is a multi-layered tale with several twists and turns, mystery and intrigue. The authors invite you to join them on the island, for a trip you will never forget. Just one important tip:

Don’t forget to check the schedule for the ferry back to the Mainland.

You wouldn’t want to get stuck on Oakwood Island for too long…


4Q: I always wondered how two people work on the same book. How did your partnership in writing with Pierre begin?

AC: When we first met, our passion for stories is what made us click as friends.  The idea of us possibly collaborating together came up soon after our initial meeting.  Once we figured out what our strengths and weaknesses were as writers, we decided to try writing one short story together to see how it would go.  It was really not hard at all to collaborate with Pierre. Our appreciation for stories and our common goals to create characters and plots was all it took to make it fun and rewarding.  We shared many cups of coffee and time spent discussing our characters and how they would react or where they came from. It didn’t feel like work at all and to share in the accomplishment with a great friend is very rewarding.

As for Oakwood Island, I wrote the first three short stories solo (it didn’t start out as a novel) and shared them with Pierre, and other readers. Pierre and I had already started to work on other short stories together, and he kept asking me about my plans for Oakwood Island. He was enthralled and needed to know more. This led to me trusting him with my Oakwood Island series and its cast of characters.  Pierre started to help grow said cast and aided in the development of the short stories into one larger tale. There isn’t one specific reason why it happened the way it did, it just fell into place that way, naturally.  In 2013, we published our first collaborative book, which was a collection of short stories. Oakwood Island is our second publication that we collaborated on together, but hopefully won’t be the last.


4Q: Please share a childhood anecdote or story with us.

AC: For a writer like myself, that creates monsters out of thin air and settings that would make a reader cringe, my childhood was, for the most part, pretty tame!  So, for lack of coming up with an interesting anecdote, I will share with you why I believe I became a horror writer instead of so many other genres I had to choose from.  I believe that what we choose as our genre, is almost entirely based on a few things: our life experiences while growing up and what we choose to read or watch on the screen. For me, it was a gradual process that eventually made me the writer I am today. You know, the one that enjoys hearing that I grossed you out or that you couldn’t get that one scene out of your head and it haunted you for a while. Yes, that’s me. J

The first book I can remember reading as a young child started it all. There was a large hard cover copy of The Grimm Brothers Fairytales at the St. Antoine Public Library. It had a light blue cover with a very detailed front cover illustration. Each page was illustrated so well and in so much detail, I would look over the illustrations just as long as I would spend reading the stories. I remember getting lost in that book, time and time again. I must have sat at the same back table there dozens of times reading out of that book, taking in every word, my mind aflutter with visions of old witches, big bad wolves and morphing ravens.  I wonder if they still have it on the shelves. J Of course, that was only the first one.

I remember reading The Adventures of Tintin and I would be enthralled by the mysteries he faced and that he had to solve.  Nancy Drew Mysteries was another big one. I also loved TV shows like Unsolved Mysteries, The Edison Twins (who remembers THAT besides me?) and also the popular shows Are You Afraid of the Dark and The Twilight Zone. Movies like IT, Christine and Pet Sematary.

Combine those along with an overactive imagination and lots of free time and you have the beginning pieces in place for a future horror lover. I also believe that certain life experiences, such as the passing of my best friend at 21, as well as having dealt with anxiety and depression through the years has helped me find my most authentic writing voice in the genre that chose me.  These events affected my writing style, especially when it comes to character and the emotional charges that I can personally relate to by having experienced them firsthand.

I enjoy reading and writing mystery and horror stories that have some supernatural or paranormal elements, but I don’t limit myself to any one genre or subgenre for that matter. I especially enjoy reading and writing those that show how the characters will react and deal with being pushed to their most extreme limits and how that will change them after the fact, be it good or bad.


4Q: Tell us about your other work and what’s in the future for Author Angella Cormier.


AC: Previous titles include "Dark Tales for Dark Nights" published in 2013 (written under Angella Jacob and in collaboration with Pierre C. Arseneault) as well as "A Maiden's Perspective: A collection of thoughts, reflections and poetry" published in 2015. 

In 2013, I created and managed an indie magazine (Codiac Chronicles) which unfortunately I had to put on hold indefinitely.  It was a huge undertaking, and one that I did on my own.  It was fun while it lasted, as I was able to meet several local artists, writers and photographers during that year it was published. It may be revived one day, but for the time being, it is dormant. Maybe in hibernation. If it ever reawakens remains to be seen. J

I am currently working on a collection of short stories (solo) that I hope to publish in the future as well as a new blog that I am putting together. That should be set to go live by the end of October, if all goes as planned.

My other love is graphic design.  I have been doing this for over 18 years and enjoy it very much. Over the past few years, I have been targeting my work to help other writers and publishers. I find it very rewarding as it’s the industry I have the most passion for and I know how important it is for writers to have not only the words crafted just right, but also the presentation of the covers and overall feel of the book’s design. I do everything from creating book trailers, bookmarks, posters, business cards, setting up static webpages, as well as consulting self-published authors through the many steps from idea to end product.



Thank you Angella for sharing your thoughts on the Scribbler's 4Q.

For you readers, please check out the links below to discover more about Angella and where you can buy her novels.



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