Amie Borst is an award-winning children’s author of multiple book series, including Unicorn Tales, Scarily Ever Laughter, and Doomy Prepper.
Interested in the arts since she was young, Amie has always been involved in creative endeavors. She began publishing books in 2013 to the delight of many young readers.
Now Amie continues to write multiple series, including one with her daughter Bethanie.
I absolutely love reading her books and am excited to finish them all.
Interview with Amie Borst
What kind of books did you read as a kid?
I loved the Choose Your Own Adventure series. Those were absolute favorites. A Wrinkle in Time was another favorite. I guess you could say I’ve always loved fantasy. Judy Blume’s slice-of-life, contemporary stories were more of my favorites. I read a lot of the Apple paperbacks, too. Remember those? They were published by Scholastic. I think I read every single one! Haha! Give me anything by Betsy Beyers, Ann M. Martin, and Betty Ren Wright and I was a happy camper.
How long have you been writing?
I’ve had an interest in writing as far back as I can remember. As a child I composed songs. When I was in high school and college my favorite classes were literature and creative writing. At that time, I even wrote my first picture book and was working on a Friends (the TV show) inspired romantic comedy. That was ages ago, of course, and I put my writing aside to raise a family. It was October of 2008 when I read a book that inspired me so much, I decided to put pen to paper and begin writing again. A short time later, I had completed a 92k word YA paranormal romance. I’ve been writing ever since!
What inspires your writing?
Oh, lots of things. I really love Halloween and all things creepy, so during the fall months I get the itch to write something that conveys the spirit of the season. But I’m also a hopeless romantic, so Christmas and the holiday season inspires me as well. Ultimately, it depends on the project I’m working on. If it’s something fun, like my Unicorn Tales series, then it can be images and art that evoke the mood of the story like unicorns, fairies, and all things that glitter and sparkle!
How long does it take you to write a book?
Well, that depends on the book. I write everything from picture books to young adult fiction. Naturally, the young adult novels which have much larger word counts will take me a lot longer than my shorter chapter books. On average, I’d say about a month from plot to final draft. Edits can take much longer.
Where did the idea of Callie’s Magical Flight come from?
I’ve loved unicorns since I was a little girl and always wanted to write a unicorn story. In 2017 I took a trip to Scotland (where the unicorn is the national animal) and it was that holiday which catapulted me to finally create the Unicorn Tales universe. Many of the stories in the series are based very loosely on Celtic mythology.
How much time did you spend creating the magical Isle of Avonlea in your head before you started writing Callie’s Magical Flight?
The Unicorn Tales universe is huge. The Isle of Avonlea features unicorns, pegacorns, fairies, pixies, sprites, dragons, mermaids, elves, gnomes, and many other magical and mythological creatures. There are four kingdoms, each with their own season and contribution to the island. Unicorns control the elements on Avonlea and that balance is sustained through the help and cooperation of all of the creatures who inhabit it. This universe is the largest of all of my worlds. As a result, it took months of planning, world building, and research before I finally came to draft the first book.
Are you planning any more fun Unicorn Tales books?
There are eight planned books as of now. Potential exists for up to ten more tales (eighteen total) directly from the unicorns themselves but I’m also in development of a spin off series featuring some of the other inhabitants of the island!
What was the inspiration for Cinderskella?
Cinderskella was inspired by my then nine-year-old daughter. You can read more about that journey here http://www.amieandbethanieborst.com/p/bethanie_10.html
Was the writing process much different when your wrote the Scarily Ever Laughter books with your daughter?
Well, sure. There were two of us collaborating, so we had to work together to write the books in the series. We’d plot the book together, pinpointing the important story markers, and then we’d assign the parts. Sometimes there was a scene Bethanie really wanted to write and she’d type it up and send me five thousand words a short while later. Other times, I’d be stuck on a scene and ask her to rework it. Cinderskella, Little Dead Riding Hood, and Snow Fright were her genius, but together we created an unforgettable series.
Are you going to write any more books together?
Bethanie is a college student now so we’re unlikely to pen more books together, though we have discussed – numerous times – a retelling from the point of view of the two favorite guys in the Scarily Ever Laughter series, Ethan and Hunter. Maybe someday we’ll write it, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon.
Does Bethanie have any plans to write any books on her own?
Bethanie has continued to write many books on her own. She’s currently working on a series under a pen name.
Do you have any exciting new books coming soon?
Doomy Prepper’s Complete Guide: How to Survive Fifth Grade and the Apocalypse just won the silver medal in the Reader’s Favorite contest. It’s the second win for Doomy, too. His first was a gold medal in the Feathered Quill book awards. Naturally, I’ll be expanding his world and bringing readers more of Doomy’s adventures. I’ve had two more books planned in the series since I first created his character back in 2012. They’ve been in the works for an eternity, but I hope to get those stories out to readers next year. Of course, there is also loads more to come in the Unicorn Tales series!
What books are on your current reading list?
I read books the way I write them; many at once. On my bedside table is Stephenie Meyer’s Midnight Sun. My kindle is loaded with non-fiction and other middle-grade novels.
What do you like to do in your free time when you are not writing?
I’m a creative, so my free time is spent creating. Whether that’s crafts, cake decorating, singing and playing piano, designing costumes for the stage, or writing, I’ll always create. It’s important to maintain balance though and so I’m often spending time with my husband and family. We love to cook fun meals together, watch movies, spend time outdoors, and travel.
Where can young readers find your books and connect with you?
Readers can find my books at their favorite retailer as well as on Amazon. They can connect with me on my website (www.amieborst.com) where I have fun printable coloring pages and other great resources, including a reader’s guide for Cinderskella. Teachers and parents can visit my Facebook page (www.facebook.com/AmieBorstAuthor) where I have video tutorials featuring readings from my books and a craft, perfect for the home or classroom.