This month I’m giving you a glimpse into the world of a truly extraordinary young woman. Ermisenda Alvarez is a Writer, Book Cover designer and Psychology Student. She is also only twenty years old.
Along with numerous solo works, Ermisenda began writing on role play sites at fourteen and completed her first crime novel at fifteen. Driven by the desire to evoke the kaleidoscope of emotions her favorite authors are able to, she kept writing. Growing up bilingual amongst her Spanish family in Australia, she found a love and deep appreciation for language and the power it wielded.
Now she’s working on a joint project with coauthor Eliabeth Hawthorne. Ermisenda has written Leocardo’s perspective of Blind Sight #1, the first book in an urban fantasy series that changes depending on whose perspective you’re reading.
Only last month she recently published Poisoned Waters, a crime novel set on a trans-Atlantic cruise in the 1950s. She lives in New South Wales, Australia.
Welcome, Ermisenda and thank you for joining me and giving us a glimpse into your world.
Thank you for inviting me along. I’m just glad someone is interested into peeking into my world. Who would’ve thought?
Your Spanish background is obviously very important to you. Has it impacted on your writing?
You’re right, it is very important to me and consequently, it has impacted my writing. Growing up and reading so many novels based in America (and occasionally Britain) made me frustrated. Why are so many protagonists American? It’s not a bad thing. I think it’s just because American authors saturate the market and naturally, they are going to write about American characters. While I haven’t written an Australian character just yet (don’t worry, I will get there!), I wanted to explore a Spanish character in Blind Sight. In Poisoned Waters, I explore numerous nationalities including British, Spanish, German, and Dutch, and yes I even included an American. There is so much to explore by having protagonists differ from culture and upbringing. Since I’ve always been fascinated with multi-culturalism, being an example of it myself with Spanish parents but living in Australia, I like to explore it through my characters.
Being a full time student who speaks a couple of languages and is learning another, how do you find time to write, design covers and publish your e-books?
Time is a funny thing. I have always felt like I have had too much of it being at school and university. This is why I started so many hobbies such as graphic design and writing. Now that I’m doing more work whether it be volunteer or otherwise alongside university, I have noticed that time has become scarce. But, for the things we enjoy, we must make time. As many may agree, it’s not hard to lose an hour mindlessly browsing social media pages (yes, Facebook I’m looking at you), surfing the web, or starting another time-consuming television series. I like to think that writing and graphic design is part of my leisure time. I enjoy it as much as socialising. Whereas some may watch television or go to the gym in their spare time, I work on writing and design. It’s both a challenge and a relaxing getaway.
You have the world before you. If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
That’s truly a hard question, Erin! I want to learn to do so much more. One thing that I have always wanted to learn more of is languages. I would love to learn them more than just chit-chat with native speakers. I want to learn so many languages inside out, to the point I could translate my novels and re-read them from fresh eyes. I find that with every language (and different dialects) there are histories enveloped in the words. My love of words stretches further than English, and even Spanish. I always think of language as a single shade of colour we perceive the world through. While it may be a tad dramatic, I definitely believe that my experience of knowing more than one language has influenced me and my interactions. I can read literature and legends from Spain and even Latin America in its purest form. Nothing lost to translation.
When you learn a new language you are suddenly open to millions and possibly billions of more people whom you can interact with, whose stories you can read and share. It often saddens me to think there are so many stories I cannot know in their original, raw form simply because of language. I would love to be able to absorb and share the world’s history of stories in their full rainbow shades.
If you could choose anyone as your mentor, who would it be?
I don’t think I would choose a mentor. There are people I look up to for different reasons. Probably the author I have the most respect for is J. K. Rowling but that is simply because of the impact her books had on me and my life. Maybe she would have a few life lessons to spare me in regards to writing, but I don’t think they’d have much impact. I would enjoy having a mentor if I had the opportunity to have one but I don’t think I could really choose one. Going along the road of writing with just myself and Eliabeth Hawthorne (my co-author for my urban fantasy series, Blind Sight) has taught me so much. Sometimes, I wish I had a mentor to help me along the way. But you know what, I learnt it regardless. I learnt the hard way but I will never make the same mistake again. I’ve surprised myself and I have found the self-publishing journey thus far to be one of the most challenging but also rewarding experiences for myself personally. And maybe I also say no mentor because I have always remembered one of many of my father’s life messages, ‘Depend only on yourself.’ If I was to choose a mentor I think I’d just want someone who is a great editor and enjoys my work. As for the rest, I can learn it. I hope?
Where would you like to see yourself in ten years time?
Rich. Famous. Haha, not really. I’d love to just see myself happy as plain as that sounds. I do have to admit that while I do not write for money, it would be absolutely fantastic to earn an income (even if it’s $1 a week) from my work. Even if I earned a good wage from writing, I believe I would still work somewhere else as well. After all, it’s through life that writer’s find inspiration. What kind of inspiration is there to find stuck in my writing office (which, unprofessionally, is just my room) all day? Fame isn’t an ambition either but I would love to gain some kind of fan-base for my books. To be acknowledged by fellow readers that what I write isn’t utter crap but something worthwhile. I don’t think there is any shame in a writer admitting those two things. After all, wealth and fame are possibly the two most significant markers for ‘achievement’ in our society whether or not they should be. They just are.
Thank you, Ermisenda for giving us a glimpse into your world. You are certainly destined for great things
Thanks for having me here, Erin. It’s been a pleasure.
These are just a few of Ermisenda’s Book cover designs.
To find out more about Ermisenda Alvarez, you can visit her on these sites.
Blog Free Ebook Covers: https://ermiliablog.wordpress.com/free-book-covers/
Facebook Free Ebook Covers: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ermisenda-Design/175308379283857?fref=ts