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Author Series: Des M. Astor

70's weathered typewriter with a green tint and picture of author Des M. Astor
Author series spotlight Des M. Astor

Welcome back to the Author Series! Initially set up back in 2020 during the height of lockdown prepare to embark or re-embark on a journey into the minds of both traditional and indie authors. Our spotlight today falls on Des M. Astor, a versatile author born in Connecticut, USA, known for her captivating urban fantasy tales that seamlessly blend elements of horror and romance. Also a talented narrator with aspirations in voice acting for audiobooks, video games, and animation. Let's get to know Des M. Astor in her own words.

Would you like to introduce yourself?

Hello! I am Des M. Astor, born in North-eastern United States (Connecticut). The primary genre I write is urban fantasy, though some folks like to describe my work as horror or romance as well, which I will proudly claim as subgenre. Aside from being an author, I am a narrator, trying to grow as a voice actress for audiobooks, videogames, and animation.

What initially got you into writing?

That is a great question. I guess I ended up reading and loving a lot of books as a child and wanted to write what I wanted to read. As a teenager, I started writing stuff and roleplaying, and it advanced from there.

Can you remember the first story/piece you wrote?

Not the exact one, but I did write something as a child, a portal fantasy of a few friends at a sleepover falling through a mirror into a fantasy dimension. The protagonist wasn’t heavy into fantasy, but learned about this world in that way, and the group needed to journey to a dragon to get back home. I think I planned on having the protagonists stay in that world by the end. It may still be a draft on Wattpad.

Which genre do you like writing in?

I love writing Urban Fantasy, and do not see myself straying from stories with some element of fantasy, typically heavy fantasy, at that. I just love fantasy too much, regardless of setting.

What is it you like about that genre?

I love the vast amount of world building I can do in the genre, including if I’m using our world and time as a base. I can have dragons weave through skyscrapers and humans learn magic! There is nothing defined within fantasy, and though some people try to set silly rules for this or that, it is up to the author to world build.

Who are your biggest influences?

My biggest influences, I would say, are video games such as FFXIV or World of Warcraft (prior to battle for Azeroth). Before that, though, I got a lot from books I read as a child, with things like middle grade fantasy. My love for vampires started with books like Vampire Kisses (went back to read and it did NOT hold up) and L.J. Smith’s Night World series (that one did hold up! It’s still great). Finally, music. Some stories or characters have emerged just by me listening to a song.

Are you traditionally published or self-published?

I am self-published. Tried traditional but after a lot of rejections, took my own path.

Do you prefer physical books or eBooks?

Either or, but eBooks are certainly cheaper.

Do you have a set process when approaching a new story?

I wish I could say I did, but sometimes it starts with just a song or character idea and spirals from there.

What has been your favourite book to write and why?

I want to say Cobratongue University: Professors & Kings, but I’d be lying - I love that book dearly, but my favourite book I’ve ever written has to be Huntsmaster City. It’s technically a sequel to Red Viper and The Dancing Crow, but many people including in reviews have said it works as a standalone.

That story defines characters and wraps up some extremely major ships. Spoilers ahead, but we see Robert Smoke get his redemption arc in this story. We see Cecelia’s story in full. We see more of Ares, and how he handles Cecelia. Darcia and Smoke also end up working together very closely. There’s just a lot I’m proud of with that book. It’s the birth of the lycans, and the start of a whole new chapter on Earth with humans learning magic getting set up on the end, along with establishing long term rules.

Is writing your primary source of income?

I wish it was, but sadly, it is not. I am not big enough for that.

What advice can you give readers who might be aspiring writers?

Write down ideas you have, they could turn into a story someday! You never know what could turn into a story, including dreams.

What does success mean to you?

A sustainable income and somewhat of a fanbase for my creations. I’m not looking to be rich, but being able to sustain on my work would be amazing. I’d prefer to make a career out of what I do.

What projects are you currently working on?

I’m marketing the audiobook I wrote, narrated, and produced all on my own, Claws of Midgard. Otherwise, I’m currently trying to get back to learning how to draw visual art so I can someday draw my characters and maybe comics, but that’s way down the road. Otherwise, voice acting in general! I really want to get the audiobook for Huntsmaster City situated, but I may need male voices for some of my characters.

What are your hopes for the future?

I really want to be a voice actress for a known character in a video game or animated series. Either that, or a larger fanbase for my works. I would love to be able to gush more about my creations to people who are interested. It may motivate me to return to writing more.

Gothic vampire lady with fan in red victorian dress
Des M. Astor

Lastly, where can people find you?

My website is where I have all of my socials and ways to contact me!


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