What She Does: One of the many new talents I discovered at Comicplaooza was author Angeli Pidcock, Angel to her friends. The fantasy author has been writing since she was a little girl. Her first work was a knock-off of Disney's The Cat From Outer Space that she hammered out on her mom's old Smith Corona typewriter. Pidcock maintains that hers is actually the superior work because her cat walked on two legs and could talk instead of using telepathy.
Her major published work at the moment is the Writer and Role-Players Primer, a writing technique book meant for aspiring fantasy writers and dungeon masters who might run into a little writer's block. The book is full of visual and verbal prompts to aid in character development, and serves as a great tool if you're looking to craft a really nuanced cast filled with flaws and triumphs.
Pidcock will shortly be releasing her own fantasy novels. Coming this fall will be Riftwalker Chronicles, an urban fantasy novel about the divide between the human world and the world of the Fae. Dedicated guardians called Riftwalkers maintain the barrier and keep the peace, and one young man finds out that he's next in line to serve in this sacred duty.
That's just a warm-up, though. Pidcock's real baby due out next year is the first in a seven-book series detailing the forging, life, and final resting place of the legendary sword Excalibur. Pidcock is a huge fan of Arthurian mythology, and The Journey of Excalibur seeks to become the sole, complete fictional narrative of all aspects of the iconic blade, even explaining how the Sword in the Stone and Excalibur are really one and the same and why Arthur was chosen to wield the weapon in the first place. We'll be looking very much forward to it.
Why She Likes It: "My favorite thing about writing is breathing life into characters, watching them learn and grow as the story moves onward, and cheering them on as they overcome hardships you put in their paths. You sometimes sit and watch as they take on a life all their own, far from the path you intended for them. There's a certain magic in that."
What Inspires Her: Pidcock's main inspiration is simply the desire to share stories. She works at a constant pace, churning out everything from her novels to flash fiction on her website. So many stories, and she wants to get them all out there.
Her personal hero is author Tracy Hickman, who Pidcock has been reading ever since he was working on Dragonlance Saga with Margaret Weis. Having met Hickman at a previous Houston convention, Pidcock found his stories about his journey as a writer to be helpful and entertaining. No other writer has influenced her as much.
If Not Here, Then Where: "I used to live in Washington State in my youth and would love to go back there. It was a wonderful place that seemed timeless and full of wonder. I remember watching the orcas migrate every year and going on hikes through the woods with my best friend. It was like being in a Middle Earth that was all our own."
If Not This, Then What: Though she can't imagine not writing, Pidcock would still want to help and inspire people. Becoming a counselor or a motivational speaker would suit her nicely. She'd probably just end up writing a book about it, though.
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What's Next: Mostly just plugging away on Riftwalker and Excalibur. That's her job, bringing fantasy to life.
"I enjoy writing fantasy because it's difficult to mess up. You don't really have to worry about technical details or historical accuracy because it's all made up. There's a freedom in fantasy that you can't find in any other genre."
More Creatives for 2014 (In order of most recently published; click here for the full page).
Jennifer Mathieu, author Scott Chitwood, writer Anat Ronen, urban artist Amber Galloway Gallego, rockstar and sign language interpreter Michael Weems, playwright Lane Montoya, artist Jordan Simpson, SLAM poet Joey & Jaime, designers Suzi Taylor, photographer Ashton Miyako, dressmaker T. Smith, artistLindsay Finnen, photographer Kaitlyn Stanley, tattoo artist Eleazar Galindo Navarro, video game maker Kate de Para, textile and clothing designer Shawn Swanner, video game painter Andy Gonzales, painter Chris Foreman, comic book sketcher Theresa DiMenno, photographer Jessica E. Jones, opera singer Atseko Factor, actor John Pluecker, writer, poet and language justice worker Ricky Ortiz, painter, tattoo artist Rabēa Ballin, artist David Wald, actor Lisa E. Harris, performing and visual artist Stephanie Todd Wong, executive director of Dance Source Houston Pamela Fagan Hutchins, novelist Heather Gordy, artist Mark Nasso, comic artist Shelbi-Nicole, artist Marian Szczepanski, novelist Jonathan Blake, fashion designer Doni Langlois, interior designer Kat Denson, dancer Blame the Comic, comedian Margaret Menchaca Alvarez, artist Jacquelyne Jay Boe, dancer Rene Fernandez, painter Teresa Chapman, choreographer and dancer