Author Interview: Eliza S. Robinson, The Purest Form of Chaos

Today’s interview is with Eliza S. Robinson, the innovative author behind The Purest Form of Chaos. You can read a spoiler free review here or a spoiler full review here.

I fully encourage you to pick up a copy for yourself through the affiliate link here: The Purest Form of Chaos

Questions about Writing

Is writing your full time job? Do you also consider it a passion?

Eliza S Robinson: Not yet! I’ve just graduated from university, so my focus right now is financial stability and independence. I plan to be a full-time writer eventually, but it takes time to build up a large and committed readership.

Writing is definitely a passion, but even that feels like too small a word. Writing is like breathing, it is like seeing; it is another sense through which I experience the world. To me, everything is a story, I am always looking through a writer’s lens.

Amanja: Congrats on graduating! That’s such an awesome accomplishment in and of itself.

What is your schedule for writing like? Do you make time for writing or do you squeeze writing in when a moment becomes free?

ESR: My schedule is… sporadic bursts of creativity. When I’m editing, I work consistently, and carve out a few hours every day for working on my novel. But during the writing process, it’s always been more intuitive. It’s different now, because I’m working full time, so my writing time is limited. I’ve starting writing during my lunch breaks, scribbling sentences down when I have a few moments to spare. It’s helped me overcome my writer’s block, because the scarcity of free time has made the writing time I do have more valuable.

How much planning goes in to writing before you actually write a sentence? Or do you just let the words flow and do heavy editing later?

ESR: When I wrote the first draft of The Purest Form of Chaos, I did little to no planning. I had a vague concept, two characters, and that was it. I started with Persephone and Haden, and Phoenix popped into my head fully formed a few days later. When I decided to rewrite the novel, three years after I originally wrote it, I made a lot of changes – particularly towards the end of the novel. By this point, there was more planning involved because I was untangling this intricate web and trying to weave it into something bigger and better.

I’m really self-critical, and it’s easy to get caught up in editing rather than trusting myself to write – particularly now, when I’m writing the sequel. Sequels are such a different creative experience, because they have something to live up to. Legacy is a major theme in the sequel to The Purest Form of Chaos, and life is imitating art, in that sense. The book wants to build its own identity, but it’s inhibited by the shadow of The Purest Form of Chaos. I used to write all my novels by hand, and I stopped when I was 15. I started again recently, and it’s my brain’s way of bypassing the inner critic, because I can’t edit as I go along. Handwriting uses different neural pathways than typing does, and when I write by hand it feels more intimate, like writing in a diary, or telling myself the story. It feels private, and I’m less scared of writing something inadequate.

A: That’s really interesting. I know I constantly edit as I go on my computer but I don’t think I’d be able to keep up with my thoughts in handwriting. I type much faster than I can write!

How do you handle criticism or negative feedback on your writing?

ESR: I saw this tweet a few weeks ago that said “before you take advice from someone, ask yourself if you want your life to look like theirs”, and that’s the principle I follow when it comes to criticism. In my experience, in non-writing-related matters, most advice people give is a projection of their own anxieties and world views. I value constructive criticism, and I consider it and take it on board, but I also consider the motives and expertise behind it. I ask myself whether the criticism comes from a place of insecurity or jealousy, or whether it’s genuine. I also ask myself if the people know what they’re talking about.

One of the most frequent bits of “feedback” people have given me since I published The Purest Form of Chaos is “oh, but people don’t read novels anymore…” I know it’s not true, but I let it get to my head, and spent months convincing myself the only way I could have a career as a writer is if I learnt to write for theatre or television. I love theatre, I love television, but I am an author, not a scriptwriter, and my purpose in life is to write novels. People talk from their own experience. Just because one person doesn’t read novels anymore, it doesn’t mean that’s the case for everyone. Feedback is incredibly important for writers, but always question the source.

When it comes to valid criticism, I let myself sit with it for a while, and find the truth in it. When you know what you can do better, it’s up to you to do better. I am always striving for self-improvement.

A: That’s really good advice. Sometimes criticism can come with the motive to be far less than constructive. And I can tell you, people still read novels! If my instagram is any judgement of that, tons of people are still obsessed with reading fiction!

Do you have any tips and tricks for aspiring writers?

ESR: The big one is: write the thing you can’t look away from. The cliché advice for writers is “write what you know”, and I hate this advice so much that I wrote a novel set in two countries I’d never been to, based on a Greek myth, set 130 years in the future. What you know will only get you so far, you’ve got to write what you’re obsessed with. I write about friendship, revolutions, love, adventure, and what it means to be human, because these are the things I’ve spent my life seeking to understand.

I stole this one from twitter and adapted it to novel writing: when you’re writing about trauma, always carry three stories about that character. We’re all made up of so many different stories, and it’s the same for fictional characters. Phoenix and Persephone have both suffered through traumatic experiences, but it is not all that they are. They have hopes and dreams, friendships, relationships, favourite foods, favourite colours, things that define them as unique individuals. This is how characters become lifelike.

A: I love that. It’s so common for a character to be defined by their one worst day. I cannot relate to a character who can’t even a little bit move on from a trauma. Your dad died? Mine too, but I kept living!

Questions about Reading

Do you think it’s necessary for a good author to also be a prolific reader?

ESR: I would be a hypocrite if I said yes, but yes. I haven’t read nearly as much as I used to since coming to university. When I was a teenager, I could read a 100,000-word novel in a day, and now I read a few novels a year. But I am consuming a lot more of other types of media. I read academic articles, I watch TV and films (my degree is in Film & Television studies), I listen to podcasts and music, I read travel blogs, and pre-pandemic I was involved in improv and theatre. I think it’s important for a good author to feed themselves with art and information. It’s important that a good chunk of that information comes from novels, because how can you write if you’re not familiar with your own medium?

But I think there’s only so much of writing that can be learnt through reading; it’s also important for writers to go out into the world, and talk to people, and see new places, and broaden their horizons. I was homeschooled until I was 15, and I wrote the original version of The Purest Form of Chaos when I was 14. I hate the advice “write what you know”, but there is an element of truth to it. It’s easier to write a novel about friendship when you’ve had friends, it’s easier to write a novel set in Estonia when you’ve actually been to Estonia. To be a good author, you need to find the balance between imagination and reality. You can have your head in the clouds, but you need at least one foot on the ground. Reading made me the person and author I am today, but my writing improved when I experienced more of the world and met a greater number of people from different walks of life.

How do you find time to read?

ESR: Always carry a book in your bag – you never know when you’ll have time to kill. Lately I’ve been reading a lot on trains during my commute to work. I also try to carve out time to read in different places, like the Botanic Gardens or near the riverbank. Creating a separate space for reading, and being intentional about making time for it, helps make it into a habit.

A: If I leave for work without a book I think I’d have a panic attack!

Does reading give you inspiration for writing? If so what books have inspired you?

ESR: Absolutely. When I first started writing, the books I was reading were instrumental to developing my voice and style. The first two novels I wrote, when I was 12, were historical fantasy. I loved historical fiction. My influences were Celia Rees (particularly Sovay), and John Dickinson’s The Cup of the World. The book that was most pivotal in my journey as a writer was Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games. I remember standing in the Young Adult section of this small independent bookstore in my home town, reading the blurb and trying to figure out if I would actually like it. I was 14, and up until that point I primarily read historical novels, but The Hunger Games movie was coming out soon, and all I knew about it was that there was a Taylor Swift song in the soundtrack. I almost didn’t buy the book because I didn’t think I’d like it. My life would have been so different then. The Hunger Games was the beginning of my love affair with dystopia.

A few months later, I read Divergent, which was more influential on my personality than my writing. Another book that hugely inspired me was Jane Eyre. I read it when I was 17, during a period in my life where I felt isolated and insignificant. I’ve always felt like my outside doesn’t match my inside, like I am this fiery passionate person with a plain, unassuming appearance. The character of Jane strongly resonated with me, and the writing is so beautiful. I read it the same year I began rewriting The Purest Form of Chaos, and it inspired me to develop my writing style. Writing dialogue comes naturally to me, but description and prose are aspects I’ve worked really hard to perfect. Jane Eyre showed me how powerful descriptive writing in novels can be.

More recently, I read Naomi Novik’s Uprooted. It was the first novel I’d read in a long time, and it’s one of my favourites. I’ve read many fantasy novels in my life, but this one surprised me. It was fresh and innovative. The pace lulled me into a sense of what the story would be like, and half way through everything shifted and I couldn’t put it down.

A: You’ve stepped strongly into the dystopian genre. I felt myself too saturated with it until The Purest Form of Chaos, which took everything I didn’t like about novels like Divergent and made it a stronger world and story.

Who’s an author that you think is criminally under-read?

ESR: Not one particular author, per se, but I think it’s really important for us to read authors from different backgrounds to ours. It’s incredibly easy to only consume art that is aligned to our own life experiences and world view. If we do this, it reinforces the beliefs we already hold, and won’t stretch or challenge us.

We live in a global world. The air we breathe, the space we exist in… we share it with strangers and friends and colleagues, from all walks of life, and all of our experiences are different. Reading a novel is like stepping into someone else’s mind, someone else’s life. It teaches us empathy and compassion, and gives us a window into a different understanding of the world.

It’s important to read books by people of different races, and sexualities, and genders, and social classes. But also different nationalities and languages – which isn’t something I’d thought about until recently. I’m currently reading The Man Who Spoke Snakish by Andrus Kivirähk, which was originally written in Estonian (I also recommend the movie November, based on one of his other novels, which sadly hasn’t been translated into English). When I read it, I feel like I’m in an Estonian forest many centuries ago. It transports me to a different time and place. Reading is such a powerful form of escapism, and I think it’s important for us to escape to places that expand our perspective, rather than only reading within a narrow view of the world.

A: This advice cannot be given enough. I made it a personal goal for myself to read more diversity this year. Next year I’m going to change the goal a little to reading more books by diversity instead of about diversity.

I love the genre magical realism and you can see how different it is when it’s written in Spanish versus Japanese, the two main forces of the genre in my opinion. It’s great to read about different nationalities but you get a completely different lesson just reading through them.

What’s a book from your childhood that holds a special place in your heart?

ESR: Celia Rees’ Sovay. I was absolutely obsessed with it when I was 10 years old. It’s the story of a woman in 18th century England who dresses as a man and sets out on a career as a highway robber. It’s set during the height of the French Revolution, and was the catalyst for my fixation on the theme of monarchy versus revolution, which is a central theme in The Purest Form of Chaos.

In 2017, I was in a second hand bookstore in Latvia (if you ever find yourself in Riga, check out Robert’s Books), and there was a copy of Sovay. It seemed so incongruous to find it in this random bookstore in Eastern Europe, and it felt like a reminder of how far I’d come. It was like my childhood self was meeting my newly grownup self. Bookstores are a portal to another world, and the books we loved as children are the key that unlocks the door between those worlds.

A: That’s a lovely story and I’m going to have to find this book!

Questions about Your Book

How much of yourself is in the protagonists? Do you relate more to Persephone or Phoenix?

ESR: Definitely Phoenix. I’ve had so many people tell me Phoenix talks like me, and plenty of her personality traits are similar to mine. It’s a nature versus nurture thing. In nature, Phoenix and I are super similar. But my life has (thankfully) been different to hers, so I’m less guarded than she is. Drunk Phoenix and Drunk Eliza have a lot in common. I wrote the scene where Phoenix is drunk around Kai years ago, but there were a couple of lines I added in one of the later drafts that were homage to a personal experience – as an in-joke with myself. I understand Phoenix more as I get older; in some ways we are growing into each other. She’s the character I’m most excited to write in the sequel, because I can’t wait to explore her as a 37-year-old, and see the ways she’s grown and changed in the time between books.

I have elements of Persephone too. I’m simultaneously strategic and impulsive, and strongly motivated by social justice. I used to be quite naïve and easily influenced by the people around me. I don’t always look before I leap, and like Persephone I’ve spent a lot of my life doing damage control for choices I made in haste. I also share her hunger for something more from life. I yearn for a purpose, to leave a mark on the world. But the difference between Persephone and I is that I’ve found my purpose. I am a writer, that is how I will make a difference. Persephone hasn’t found her purpose yet, and it’s a really frustrating place to be in. She’s searching for something she knows exists, but is forever out of reach.

The other character I relate to is the Tsar. *cue “I’m The Villain In My Own Story” from Crazy Ex-Girlfriend*. I’m not actually like him – I’m too invested in the idea of being a good person for that. But I do relate to him. He’s my shadow side, the potential for awfulness that I’ll never indulge in or live up to. I don’t deliberately view people as science experiments, or try to manipulate them. But if the balance of my personality traits shifted slightly, I could imagine myself turning into him. If I was cold and distant and didn’t have the love and community I need to thrive, I could imagine myself becoming so isolated from what it means to be human that I could veer towards the realm of evil genius (maybe minus the genius). It’s a recurring fear of mine, that I’m too separate from other people to fully fit into the normal world, and I will eventually become an evil mastermind (I’m about as intimidating as a fruit fly, I have no idea where this fear comes from).

Phoenix and the Tsar are both Aquarius like me, and Aquarius rules community, humanitarianism, and scientific progress – but it also rules alienation. Phoenix is the side of Aquarian energy that overcomes its separation and uses its difference to work towards the future of humanity. The Tsar is the flip side of this, the person who weaponizes their individuality, who distances themselves from other people because they’re scared of being shunned and persecuted. I have both those energies inside of me, and not giving in to the fear of my own difference is a choice, something I am actively working on.

A: Great complete answer. But also, finally another Crazy Ex Girlfriend fan!

The Purest Form of Chaos seems to provide a commentary on the ultra-popular genre of dystopian fantasy adventure novels. Was there a main catalyst that triggered you into wanting to write this story? Perhaps something specific you wanted to make better?

ESR: I started writing The Purest Form of Chaos in April 2012, a month after The Hunger Games movie came out, so dystopia was a huge part of the cultural zeitgeist at the time. There were a number of factors that converged to make The Purest Form of Chaos what it is today. When I first starting writing it, I wrote intuitively. I wrote about friendship and revolution and scientific progress. It had potential, but it was flawed. As I got older, I educated myself on intersectional feminism, and realized that my novel didn’t live up to the harsh truths of the world.

I glossed over the darkest themes (particularly what occurs between Persephone and the Tsar, regarding Melinoë). I self-censored, because I was 14 and scared to fully embrace the dark and twisted nature of what I was writing about. When I was 17, I chose to rewrite the novel. This time, it would be uncensored. I would write a novel about boundaries crossed, about the way trauma shapes us, about the horrible, unfair side of the female experience of the world.

The original story was too white, too straight, and it didn’t live up to its undercurrent of progressive themes. I didn’t want to write something cliched and tropey, that simplifies the conflicting experiences women (and people more broadly) experience living in a nightmare world. It was a complicated process, because there were only so many plot strands I could remove without unravelling the whole story. I’ve done it to the best of my ability, but I can still see flaws there. Those flaws will even out over the course of the series, but at this moment in time, I am the only person who knows that.

Complex representations of women in dystopian novels are also important. I love The Hunger Games, and I love Divergent, but there is this trope of battle-hardened women leading the fight alone. I wanted to paint a different picture of womanhood. Having two protagonists helps, because Phoenix and Persephone have different personalities and goals and fears, and they navigate the world in ways that contrast with each other. The areas that come naturally to Persephone are a struggle for Phoenix, and vice versa. For me, being a woman is a collaborative experience. Feminism is a support network, not a one-woman show.

A: You are so right. I think the thing people always need to remember is that we are stronger together. A chosen one is indeed a fantasy, not one person has every strength.

It’s unfortunately quite rare to see female friendship done right in media. Are you lucky enough to model the lead protagonist’s friendship off of any real life ones?

ESR: I actually started writing it at a time when I had no friends! I was homeschooled until I was 15, and when I did go to school it was absolutely awful. I didn’t have any long-lasting close friendships until I came to university. The Purest Form of Chaos was originally a much shorter novel that I wrote at 14, and I rewrote it when I was 17-21. The friendship between Phoenix and Persephone was everything I wanted, and everything I thought I would never find.

When I was rewriting and editing the novel, it was a different experience. I have some amazing friendships in my life now, and that definitely helped me perfect the friendship between Phoenix and Persephone. Most of my friendships are a lot calmer. I have had some intense, passionate friendships in my time, and some that are on again/off again like Phoenix and Persephone’s. Sometimes we meet a rare kind of person, someone who holds a piece of our soul that no one else can see or touch, and that’s the kind of friendship Phoenix and Persephone have. Pop culture has ingrained in us the belief that soulmates have to be romantic partners, but the great loves of my life have consistently been my friends.

A: I get that, it wasn’t until much later in life that I really started to value and nurture friendships in the way you would a romantic relationship.

In follow up to question 3, what is the main thing you would change about the stereotypical representation of female friendships in the media? For example, I would change the idea that women always have to be in competition with one another.

ESR: I preface this by calling out my own hypocrisy, because I did not do this in The Purest Form of Chaos. But hey, I’m growing and learning. Anyway, the thing I would change is the lack of community. Representation of close, healthy female friendships is so important. However, it takes a village. I love my best friend, but if my support system was only one person, it would not be enough for me. I like to have an average of four really close friends, because I need different people for different parts of my personality.

When you find someone who really gets you, there is the risk of relying on them too much, and falling into codependency. There are great representations in books and films and TV of chosen family, but how many of those communities are predominantly female? Take Brooklyn Nine-Nine, for example. In an ensemble of 8 or so people, there are two women. Yes, they are good to each other and support each other, and it’s better than one woman, but it’s still not a reflection of reality. As women, we have friends and sisters and teachers and colleagues—so many influential women in our lives—and the media doesn’t reflect this. A TV show I really love is The Bold Type, because it is one of the few representations of female friendship I’ve seen where it’s not just two best friends against the world.

I also love Grey’s Anatomy for this. Aside from my love of romance and melodrama, it was the sense of community that kept me watching for 16 seasons. I love the complexity of relationships, the way people’s lives are interwoven with each other. Friendship is messy, life is messy, sometimes we’re too close for comfort to people whose loyalties conflict with ours. Even at our most isolated, we’re still intricately woven into the lives of the people around us, and I think Grey’s Anatomy really reflects this.

I want to write more about community in the sequel to The Purest Form of Chaos. I want to write about the overlap of family and chosen family and friends and acquaintances and enemies, all the people in the web of our world that shape us into the people we are. It’s not just our best friends that shape us, it’s all the people on the periphery.

A: Another great answer and I’m thinking we have a lot of the same taste in television lol.

How did you decide on the theme of fruit for this novel? It is present in several ways and used dominantly as a negative force, a tool used by the bad guys. Does it perhaps start with a young lady named Eve…?

ESR: My original concept for The Purest Form of Chaos was a dystopian sci-fi retelling of the Greek myth of Persephone and Hades. In the myth, it is the magic of eating pomegranate seeds that keeps Persephone trapped in the Underworld. In The Purest Form of Chaos, the Underworld is more figurative than literal, but I wanted to find a way for the pomegranate to keep her there without magic being involved. With Persephone and the Tsar, the fruit storyline came from me thinking: how can I use science to weaponize the pomegranate in a way that reflects the Greek myth?

With Phoenix, I think readers will make certain assumptions about what has been done to her in her childhood, and I really didn’t want to go down that route. My brain is a weird place, and sometimes I’m just like: what is the weirdest possible thing I can think of? And I write that. Phoenix feels isolated and different from everyone around her, so giving her a… unique trauma is a way of furthering her feeling of isolation. Trauma is isolating at the best of times, but if she knows there is no one else who has experienced the same trauma as hers, it increases the sense of alienation. In this sense, fruit is used to make both Phoenix and Persephone distrust their own experiences. It’s used to gaslight them, to keep them distanced from their power.

The Eve connection came in later. I’m fascinated by the power of symbols. I love astrology and tarot and mythology, anything with intricate layers of meaning. In the story of Adam and Eve, fruit represents knowledge. But often in myths, fruit is a symbol of sexuality. Even after so many years of feminism and progress and sex positivity, sexuality is still a minefield, it is still weaponized against us. It is not the easiest place to stand in our power. Especially because for so many women, sexuality is tied to trauma, womanhood is tied to trauma, power is tied to the loss of our power. For Phoenix, sexual power feels like this thing that exists on the other side of a glass wall, in sight but never quite within reach. It is easier to avoid this power than let it consume her. Persephone knows the power of sex, and she wants to access this power, but her attempts to initiate it never go quite as planned. Both women are kept at a distance from their sexual power, because their internal world (Phoenix) or external world (Persephone) complicate this path to empowerment. Because of this, it mutates into a source of fear.

A: It’s very common for a fictional woman’s trauma to be rape. I admit when my mind was wondering how Phoenix was traumatized I immediately jumped to sexual abuse. It’s what we’re conditioned to expect from a “damaged” woman. Her trauma is unexpected and that definitely makes her more complex.

Questions about You/ Just for Fun

What is something mundane that doesn’t seem to bother most people but drives you absolutely insane?

ESR: My big one is evasiveness. If someone dances around a topic rather than addressing it outright, it drives me nuts. I also hate it when people keep me waiting, lie to me about anything, chew with their mouths open, ask me questions that they know the answer to, and many other things. I’m a petty person, it’s a long list.

A: Keep me waiting is a very big one for me.

What’s the best trip you’ve ever taken?

ESR: Last summer, I traveled through the Baltic States for two and a half months. I spent the majority of this trip working at a hostel in Estonia, where I met the artist who illustrated the cover of The Purest Form of Chaos. It was so serendipitous to meet my cover artist in the same city where my novel is set. My time at the hostel was intense and dramatic, but it taught me so much about myself.

I had made plans before I left the UK, but two weeks into my trip, my plans fell through. There was this moment where I sat on a bus from the Curonian Spit to Klaipeda, after I’d quit a job as a nanny in Lithuania, and I had no set plans for the next three weeks. I had a room booked for a few days in Vilnius, and a job interview at the hostel in Tallinn, and all I had in the world was a backpack and blind faith. It was the most free I’ve ever felt in my life. Sometimes, you’ve got to leave everything you know behind in order to come back to yourself.

A: That sounds incredible and it is a great book cover!

What’s your favorite present you’ve ever received?

ESR: My sister bought me a necklace, with a deep green globe pendant and a small charm in the shape of a set of binoculars. I love travel, and the necklace was actually made in Estonia, where The Purest Form of Chaos is partly set, so it reminds me of two of my favourite things!

If a stranger wanted to win you over, how would they start the conversation?

ESR: I want to say travel, or philosophy, because those are two of my favourite things to talk about. But based on past experience, love and trauma. I’ve formed so many friendships by sharing stories of our deepest wounds. Emotional vulnerability is such an important part of human connection, but I have noticed it is always women that this happens with. My female friendships have almost all started by talking about our trauma, and my friendships with men most frequently start with humour. The depth does come, but at a later point. I think, as women, we’re socialized to bond through shared pain, and I don’t know how I feel about that. The female experience is about so much more than suffering.

A: This is interesting, I think I’ve mostly experienced the same.

What’s something you would scream at your younger self until you were sure they heard you?

ESR: Cliché, I know, but “it gets better” and “you will find your people”. My younger self was really lonely, and I spent so much of my life feeling like I didn’t belong. But it did get better, and I did find my community. There are so many people in my life who love me, and my teenage self would never have believed it was possible.

Where Can People Find You?

ESR: I have a blog at elizaserenarobinson.com, where I’m trying to cut back on my thinly veiled posts about my love life and actually write something relevant. I write about writing, travel, occasionally astrology and politics, and most of all I write about my feelings.

I am on Twitter at @ElizaSRobinson, Instagram @elizasrobinsonwrites, and Facebook at Eliza S Robinson, and The Purest Form of Chaos is available from elizaserenarobinson.com, Amazon, waterstones.com (if you’re in the UK), or you can order it from your library or local bookstore.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

ESR: There is a lot of stigma around self-published or indie books, and there’s not the same stigma around indie films. I have a degree in Film & Television Studies, so I’ve spent four years around people who are super passionate about film. What I’ve noticed is that indie films are viewed as innovative and enterprising, that they’re praised and cherished – and often viewed as more valuable or artistic than “mainstream” films.

However, indie books often seem to be viewed as a sign of failure. So many people have asked me why I haven’t gone to a “real” publisher, or advised me that I should do so. We live in a world where artists have seized the means of production regarding content creation. Filmmakers, youtubers, etc, have built their careers through the internet, without the help of a middle man. But when it comes to authors, this is seen as a sign of not being good enough, of playing it small, of giving up. The publishing industry, like the film industry, and pretty much any industry in the Western world, has so many gatekeepers.

There are so many people who aren’t given the platform to tell their stories, who aren’t welcomed into traditional literary spaces. I chose to independently publish The Purest Form of Chaos, and my personal bitterness about people disregarding that choice is one thing. But it’s important to recognize that self-publishing can empower the voices of people whose stories would otherwise never be told. Gatekeeping in the creative industries is never a good thing, and tools to level the playing field should be welcomed rather than looked down upon.

A: Before I started writing reviews for independent authors I think I thought that same thing. Now, I can easily tell everyone that the best books I’ve read this year have almost entirely been self published or independently published.

I’m continually impressed by these authors and many best sellers pale in comparison to the creativity flowing through a system with a strong emphasis on content over profit.

Thank you so much Eliza for participating in this interview. Readers, pick up The Purest Form of Chaos today!

I love comic books, nonfiction, and everything in between! Come discuss your favorites!

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