How did “An Old Man Cometh And He Is Overgrown” originate? What inspirations did you draw on?
I love stories where characters find their person(s) through adventure, magic, and hardship. Before writing this story, I was also daydreaming epilogues for my favorite Hayao Miyazaki films. I thought, “What happens when the main characters grow old? What happens when one of them loses their partner in life? How do you process that grief when you’re jaded by the world and have magical abilities?” I was still processing my own grief and anxieties while writing it, and for a time I wasn’t sure how it would end.
What is your writing space like? What do you like to have around for optimal creativity?
Having two children under four years old, my writing space is anywhere I can grab a minute for myself to write. Sometimes it’s at my desk upstairs, though that’s quite rare lately. Mostly—like right now—it’s the living room couch, or the kitchen table, or I put my laptop on the kitchen counter while I’m going around the kitchen cooking and cleaning. When my youngest was an infant, I had my laptop on a side table in our bedroom while I bounced the baby in a carrier. I used to need that “optimal” space, and maybe someday I’ll get back to it. For now, it’s wherever I can get the job done.
Did you get stuck at any point while writing this? How did you get past that?
I wasn’t sure where the story would go when it came to Cog putting Udo back together. It could have ended much worse for the both of them. It could have been miserable and bitter. I took time to process my own feelings before finishing. Then the ending came out like one big shuddering exhale, and I think myself and the story needed that tender closure.
What are you reading lately? What writers inspire you?
Oh, so much! I read everything. I work at Wild Geese Bookshop in Franklin, Indiana, and I write for Book Riot and Publishers Weekly. While I focus on speculative fiction and SF/F, any and all genres are worthy. I often look to romance when my life is stressful, and I need those promised HEAs. Right now, I’m really enjoying the YA graphic novel Squire by Sara Alfageeh and Nadia Shammas. Becky Chambers’s A Prayer for the Crown-Shy was a balm for my soul. As a short story writer, I am extremely fond of short story collections, and Kim Fu’s Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century was absolutely astounding.
What are you working on lately? Where else can fans look for your work?
Lately, I’m grinding out a novel while agonizing over the many anxieties of being on sub with my agent for my short story collection and novella. Manifesting success! As I mentioned in an earlier question, I write for Book Riot and Publishers Weekly. My PW reviews are kept anonymous, but you can find my Book Riot articles at bit.ly/3x2fiK7. My author website is lyndsiekay.wordpress.com, where you can find links to my other short stories and such. And you can follow me @lmanusos on Twitter!
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