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Heart-to-heart with author Jo Narayan

Tell readers about yourself

Hi there! My name is Jo Narayan and I’m an author based in Knoxville, Tennessee, USA. I’m 31 years old and work a day job in the finance industry, but storytelling has always had a special place in my heart. I’ve only recently felt supported enough to pursue my dream of authorship, thanks to my wonderful husband and a very good writing coach who helped me to believe in myself. When I’m not working or writing, you can find me playing with my (almost) 3 year old, reading, or playing Animal Crossing. I love to connect with people on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter! I go by AuthorJoNarayan on all three so it’s easy to find. 🙂 

Jo author pic

Tell readers about what you do

I write dark fantasy and have a fascination for moral gray areas. My debut novel is coming out this summer and it kicks off a series that explores the existence of absolute good and absolute evil, the struggle for control and power, and what it means to be human. I love the philosophy of it all and am excited for conversations around these topics and more! I’ve done a bit of pre-work for the novel and the themes in some free Wattpad novellas, as well.

Another theme readers will notice in my characters is that they’re all flawed in some way–One person has very strong morals and they aren’t exactly what normal people would agree with. Another has depression and struggles against their own nature. One is just a liar and doesn’t really care too much about other people… and then you also have someone who I can only describe as a “Hufflepuff“, but who has their own hidden issues as well.

Tell readers about your online presence

My upcoming novel is titled “The Wraith’s Bargain” and is about a girl who becomes entangled with a group of demon hunters as she tries to find a solution for her demonic nightmares. Dana begins learning magic, has run-ins with the demon king and a charming stranger, and a lot of tough decisions to make. I do NOT envy her.

I also run a website with a blog in which I discuss my own writing news, as well as review other books and discuss topics that relate to my interests. You’ll see posts on the occult, demons, magic, themes in different types of literature… pretty much anything that interests me!

What inspires you?

Music is a huge inspiration for me, as well as other books and movies. I enjoy listening to rock and metal music – the emotions they evoke and the imagery they use in their lyrics often help to inspire me on aspects of my stories. Sometimes I’ll reference specific songs in my works, as well.

What is the best advice you have ever given?

Once I told a friend that they needed to make taking care of themselves a priority. Drinking enough water, sleeping, being active, etc. Then they’d be healthy enough to really enjoy life and follow their dreams.

…I need to work on that myself, now. I was super healthy before my daughter was born but since then I’ve let that slip through the cracks. Make yourself a plan and stick to it!

What is the best advice you have ever received?

Really just to believe in myself. I’ve worked with a coach who has helped me to take charge of my aspirations through mindset work, and it was revolutionary for me. Throughout the process I learned to trust myself, to shed most of my inhibitions around writing, and that I didn’t have to ask for permission for anything. There was nothing stopping me from writing and publishing my books except for myself. It was very empowering, learning all of this, and I wouldn’t be where I am without it!

What was the last gift you gave someone?

As of right now, the last gift I did was for Indiecember, the Indie author event. I chose one of my favorite indie books and gifted a copy to two of my family members, asking them to leave an honest review on Amazon when they finished reading it. Reviews are really important to authors and I think are an excellent gift to give!

Off the top of your head, who would you give a shout out to on Twitter?

@pagan_paperback is my writing coach and a bestselling author herself. She deserves all of the attention in the world! I love working with her and she’s super supportive and knowledgeable.

What’s rocking your world this month?

Okay this is going to seem a bit childish, but I recently discovered Disney’s Descendants. After seeing them on Disney Plus I actually purchased all three movies and have been jamming to the soundtrack on spotify for weeks. The songs are just SO GOOD and I absolutely love the storyline and characters!

Jo Narayan’s debut novel The Wraith’s Bargain releases June 28, 2020. Check out @authorjonarayan or jonarayan.com for more information.

Book blurb

A year has passed since the nightmares began, and Dana is running on fumes. Her nightly torture by demons has left her reliant on caffeine and desperate for change.

Change comes, in the most unexpected way. When a demon comes for her in real life, Dana is saved by an Order of local demon hunters. They offer to help her to manifest and learn to control her own brand of magic, which could turn her life around. It will take time, but Dana is prepared to put in the work. That is, until she encounters the demon king himself who promises she won’t have to wait–and is left with her head spinning.

Dana knows nothing good will come from trusting the demons–but she doesn’t know how much longer she can handle the nightmares. It’s not until a charming stranger starts turning up in her dreams and helping her out of sticky situations that she realizes she may have a third option. Unfortunately for Dana, he’s a demon too–but he has just the bargain that could get her out of this mess for good.

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One Comment

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    This is such a brilliant interview, I always love finding out more about the authors behind the stories! Putting yourself first and taking care of your health is always great advice. I love that rock and metal music is an inspiration – that’s so awesome. Thanks for sharing and all the best with the book! <3 xx

    Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

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