About/FAQ

Elise Kova is the USA Today bestselling author of the Air Awakens series, Loom Saga, and Wish Quartet.

In her past lives, she has graduated from an MBA program, lived in Japan for a bit, and worked for a Fortune 500 technology company. However, she finds herself much happier in her current reincarnation as full-time author. When not writing, she can usually be found playing video games, drawing, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media. She’s happy to call Saint Petersburg, Florida, her home, but is always looking forward to her next trip.

Follow Elise Kova on Goodreads

Follow Elise Kova on Amazon

Elise is represented by Kathleen Ortiz at New Leaf Literary. Inquiries regarding translation rights, dramatic rights, etc, should be directed to New Leaf.

Other business matters should be directed through the form on her contact page.

FAQ

This is a list of frequently asked questions I receive about me and my work.


How can I request a review copy or advanced reader copies (ARCs) of upcoming books?

Whenever I have review copies or ARCs to send out I always make sure I post it everywhere – twitter, Facebook, instagram – so following me somewhere is a really good way to stay in the know.

Sometimes, I will send out review copies to people who “cold request” copies (aka, people who I haven’t spoken to before and invited them to request). If you are interested in requesting a review copy, please use the contact form on my website. Please include all the information relevant to you and why you’re requesting, things like: follower counts, social media links, blog links, and any other helpful stats. I will only email reply to people who I’ll be giving a review copy/ARC to.  This is not to be rude, but only to help alleviate some of the to-do’s in my day so I can keep writing stories for you to enjoy!

Members of my street team also gain special access to review copies. Learn more about my street team, the Tower Guard, here.


What order should I read your books in?

Currently, I write in three main worlds: Air Awakens, Loom Saga, and Age of Magic. Each of these worlds have a different starting point that I recommend.

Air Awakens (Genres: young adult, epic fantasy, romance, coming of age)
If you are starting in the Air Awakens world, I recommend beginning with either AIR AWAKENS (Air Awakens, #1) or VORTEX VISIONS (Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles, #1). Both of these books are starting points to the Air Awakens universe and the beginnings of their own complete stories. If you truly want to start at the “beginning” AIR AWAKENS was my debut novel.

Also in the Air Awakens world is the Golden Guard Trilogy. This is a collection of stand-alone stories about the formation of the Golden Guard – an elite fighting force. They are presented in chronological order starting with THE CROWN’S DOG (Air Awakens: Golden Guard Trilogy, #1). But you can read any book in this trilogy on its own and have a complete story.

Loom Saga (Genres: epic fantasy, dark fantasy, steampunk)
The Loom Saga is completed at three books and the saga begins with with THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM (Loom Saga, #1). This is a dark and gritty world, filled with intrigue and high stakes. It was listed by Bustle as one of “15 new fantasy series to read while waiting for the next season of Game of Thrones.”

Age of Magic (Genres: paranormal, romance, urban fantasy)
Age of Magic is a universe of magic meeting modern times. How these supernatural elements came to pass is told in the Wish Quartet which begins with SOCIETY OF WISHES (Age of Magic: Wish Quartet, #1).

If you’re interested in a FREE book you can begin with PRINCE OF GODS (Age of Magic: Wish Quartet, #0.5), a prequel story that can be read before starting the Wish Quartet.

 

Don’t know what book to start with? Click here and take my quiz to find out which world you may enjoy most!


How did you start? / How long have you been writing?

I wrote my first novella, a high fantasy, in sixth grade. It was part of a school project to write a “long form” story. I was determined to write a chapter book and so that’s what I did. Needless to say, I’ve loved writing for a long time. Reading and books have always been a big part of who I am, so even if I wasn’t dreaming of being an author at points in my life, I’ve always held a deep love for the art of storytelling.

Thus, when I began writing AIR AWAKENS in 2012-2013, it started as a hobby.

I’ve always loved reading Fanfiction and wanted to write in an environment as free and as interactive as the Fanfiction websites I frequent. I wasn’t considering publication and just wanted to have fun writing. That want of community in writing led me to Fictionpress. It was a great site to help keep me on track by making it a habit of posting a chapter every day for my readers. Additionally, those readers became what were effectively my first betas.

I queried AIR AWAKENS in 2014 after substantial edits, but did not receive any offers of representation from agents (as it is for many debut authors). Rather than trunking my work and waiting to query or publish it later I decided that self publishing was a viable option for getting my story out there and helping build my career as an author.

AIR AWAKENS was ultimately published in August of 2015.

In January of 2016 I became a full time author.

In July of 2016 CRYSTAL CROWNED hit the USA Today bestsellers list.

In winter 2016 I signed with a publisher, Keymaster Press, for publication of the Loom Saga.

In February of 2018 I sighed with New Leaf Literary Agency and are currently represented by them.


Who is your…?

Agent: Kathleen Ortiz at New Leaf Literary

Air Awakens

Cover Illustrator: Merilliza Chan

Editor: Monica Wanat

Distributor: Gatekeeper Press

Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles

Cover Illustrator: Livia Prima

Editor: Rebecca Faith Editorial

Cover Illustration & Distribution: Silver Wing Press

Loom Saga

Cover artist: Nicholas D. Grey

Editor: Rebecca Faith Editorial

Distributor: Keymaster Press

Golden Guard Trilogy

Cover artist: Merilliza Chan

Editor: Rebecca Faith Editorial

Distributor: Gatekeeper Press

Wish Quartet

Cover Illustration & Distribution: Silver Wing Press

Editor: Rebecca Faith Editorial


How do you determine your cover illustrations? / Why does [character] on your cover not look like the book says?

I’m very lucky to work with some amazing illustrators to help bring my works to life. With every illustrator, we go through an extensive discussion process about the story, character(s), setting, and other important elements to have on the cover. Then, the illustrator presents me two, or three, very rough sketches and I select what will be the final layout. Usually, before finalization, I’m shown a rough color stage where I have the opportunity to make some final comments and suggest changes.

As a result of this process the character that comes to life on the cover is never a perfect model of what’s in my head, or the readers. I select my illustrators based on skill and faith in their overall aesthetic. I want them to bring the characters to life as they see them – and everyone sees the character differently.

So I encourage every reader to make the characters their own and look past any differences on the cover to hold true to their interpretation of the work within. Meanwhile, I will forever to continue to listen and learn from the feedback my readers provide.


What was your original inspiration for…

Air Awakens? Honestly, I was inspired by an EDM (Electronic Dance Music) song, Clarity, by the artist ZEDD. When I first heard this song I was just getting back into writing and it began to form the makings of what would be Vhalla and Aldrik in my head. I began to ask myself, “Why is their love clarity? Why is it insanity?” When I had the answers I got to writing and Air Awakens was born.

Loom Saga? In Air Awakens, magic is not in the blood. I wondered what would happen if I went the complete reverse of this and asked, “What if magic was ONLY in the blood?” From there, my mind went wild, steampunk flairs were added, and Loom was born.

Wish Quartet? Lynn (my co-author and I) were intrigued by the intersection of modern times and magic. So we began thinking about a world where magic lies just beneath the surface.


What is your primary advice to aspiring authors?

Never give up! You’ve chosen to pursue a tough path and it’s one that really demands a lot from you. You need to be ready to look at your books like a product and a business, beyond a hobby and a passion. Really, successful authors need both sides of that spectrum. Consider how you define success and then be willing to work toward that.


How do you pronounce the names in Air Awakens?

Vhalla: Val-La (Like Valhalla without the ‘Ha’)

Aldrik: Aal-drik (A like the A in apple)

Fritz: Frits

Baldair: Bald-air (said exactly how each of these words are separately)

Sareem: Sah-ream

Roan: like roam but with n instead of m at the end

Want to hear me pronounce the names? Watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VlAdRDNd4qU

You can also learn more about the Air Awakens world here:

The World of Air Awakens


How do you pronounce then names in the Loom Saga?

There’s actually a pronunciation guide in the appendix in the back of the book at the end in both digital and physical editions.

You can also learn more about the world of Loom here:

The World of Loom


How do you come up with the names of your characters?

Currently, I try to develop a “naming convention” for the world so that way all names fit into the world the characters exist in. I admittedly didn’t do this with Air Awakens, and learned a lot from the mixed bag of names that ended up in that series.

The naming convention can be a series of sounds, inspiration from outside sources like places and times, or built around a singular name I hear and think is cool.

From there, I can look at baby names lists to get inspiration or names outright. Sometimes, I’ll just say sounds until I get a name that feels right.


Do you base characters off yourself or real people?

Yes and no. There are personality traits in all my characters that come from myself or people I know. And sometimes the situations the characters find themselves in, or the struggles they have surrounding friendship and hardship, are drawn from situations myself or my friends have been in. But it’s not a “one for one” situation. I can’t say 100% of this character is based off 100% of this person. It’s more like 60% of this character is based off 4 people I know and then 40% has evolved naturally from what that blend brings in the world the character is in.


What authors have influenced you?

I had the fortune of growing up in a home where books were prevalent and reading was encouraged. C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia were the first chapter books I’d ever read. I was surrounded by Robin Hobb, Anne McCaffrey, J. R. R. Tolkien, Robert Jordan — I knew their names and their work from an early age.

As a product of the Harry Potter generation I also have to say J.K. Rowling. Additionally, I was exposed to the works of Dave Duncan in my high school years at a very formative time, and his A Man Of His Word series truly changed the way I viewed fantasy.


What is your favorite and least favorite part of writing fantasy?

Everything comes down to the world building. It is the most exciting part, the most rewarding element, and one of the hardest to manage. It’s exciting because you get to craft a world from the ground up. Everything is possible if you can imagine it. It’s challenging to think of things in a new way, honor tropes or subvert expectations.

But it’s also very challenging because once you make rules you must follow them, even if it would be easier for the plot to break them at times. Additionally, they must make sense within the world. The final challenge is after developing this rich world, scaling back to what the reader sees, because you can’t put everything in the book without taking away from the pacing and characters.

It’s one of the hardest parts, but it also is my favorite part.

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41 Comments

  1. Sofia
    December 25, 2015 @ 3:35 pm

    I have read your books. I am surprised literally agents rejected you. I mean Twilight is badly written and it got published because the story was appealing to teens, your book is fantastical, you shouldn’t have been rejected. I applaud you for self publishing. “Air Awakens” is well written and the story is enticing. I applaud you. I can’t wait for your next book to come out .

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      December 31, 2015 @ 5:42 pm

      Thank you for your support Sofia! It was a difficult choice but I can’t say I regret it. The publication process is a tough road and everyone – authors, agents, and publishers – are all just trying to do their best. But, I think, at the end of the day it doesn’t matter how books get into readers’ hands, so long as they’re the best books they can be!

      Reply

  2. keiko
    January 5, 2016 @ 6:03 am

    Is your books going to be available in bookstores in Asian countries like the Philippines?

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      January 6, 2016 @ 2:19 pm

      I’d love to make Air Awakens available in every country! Unfortunately, I have no announcements at this time regarding any expansion into Asian markets beyond what can be ordered and internationally shipped on sites like The Book Depository.

      Reply

  3. Earth's End + Character Name Pronunciations Video
    February 11, 2016 @ 12:45 pm

    […] About/FAQ […]

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  4. RELEASE DAY: Earth’s End by Elise Kova! |
    February 11, 2016 @ 2:55 pm

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  5. Earth’s End (Air Awakens #3) by Elise Kova | Slitsread
    February 15, 2016 @ 4:04 pm

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  6. #EarthsEnd #AirAwakens3 out now! #newrelease #sneakpeek – Mama Reads, Hazel Sleeps
    February 16, 2016 @ 12:29 pm

    […] My FAQ […]

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  7. Dez
    March 13, 2016 @ 1:44 am

    How many books do you think the series will consist of?

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      March 14, 2016 @ 9:00 am

      The Air Awakens Series will be five books in total.

      Reply

      • Jani
        July 18, 2016 @ 8:58 pm

        Hello, just five? Crystal Crown left us with a dual dilemma…

        Reply

  8. "Treat Self-Publishing as a Business" – Interviewing Elise Kova
    March 24, 2016 @ 3:35 pm

    […] There are many more indie success stories than the ones you repeatedly hear about out there, and Elise Kova‘s is one of them. She started writing in 2013, as a hobby, on Fictionpress. She now has 5 […]

    Reply

  9. Britney S.
    April 6, 2016 @ 11:22 am

    Discovering Air Awakens was like an awakening for me in itself. I’ve always loved fantasy fiction, but I had lately been through dozens of books that were lackluster or just bad. Reading Air Awakens reminded me why it is that I love fantasy fiction so much. It lit that fire in me, so to speak, and you’re writing has even inspired me to start writing fiction again!

    I have to say that I admire you more since reading this page! Your personal story may not seem it, but it’s very inspiring. You took part of who you are, created something new and exciting, and worked hard to see it through yourself. Kudos to you for self-publishing!

    I’ll definitely be checking out FictionPress, by the way. I would love to hear more about your writing process, whether you prefer outlining, how your story developed (without spoilers, of course), and generally pick your brain if possible.

    Reply

  10. #BookBuddyAthon (plus my hectic life) Recap – Book Is Glee
    May 26, 2016 @ 7:22 pm

    […] Awakens like me too, sign up! Click the image for more info, or go to Elise Kova’s website here. Do I look excited? You bet I […]

    Reply

  11. sabrina wannet
    May 29, 2016 @ 10:04 am

    Hello
    I have seen that there are bookmarks from this serie that I love.
    Is there a possibility to find or get these somewhere? In the netherlands
    where I live they are nowhere to be found.

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      May 29, 2016 @ 11:53 am

      The bookmarks are taken with me to my appearances, sent out with my giveaways, and sent to my street team members for them to distribute/giveaway. As of right now, the best way to get Air Awakens bookmarks is keep your eyes open for a giveaway! I will be in the Netherlands in October, too… so maybe I can see you then and you can get the latest swag!

      Reply

  12. Nicole
    June 21, 2016 @ 2:04 pm

    Will the series be available on Audible/ for Audio Upgrades?

    Reply

  13. Ebony Voigt
    July 19, 2016 @ 12:20 am

    Hello! (I’m literally so excited to be writing this you have no idea! 😛 🙂 )
    Anyway, I actually want to be an author too, so I just wanted to ask a few questions.

    1) How do you go about planning the skeleton of your stories?
    2) How do you go about getting a book published? What’s the process and how long (approximately) do you think it would take?
    3) How do you ensure characters don’t become two-dimensional and boring? (I have a tendency to do that sometimes, because I ramble on when i write… a lot…)

    I have yet to read Air Awakens (I actually found out you were an author from the AAA Podcast!) but I eagerly await ordering my copy!
    Love and hugs from Australia!
    Ebony

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      August 7, 2016 @ 11:49 pm

      Just so you know, I write a lot about my writing and publishing journey in my monthly newsletters, check them out by subscribing > EliseKova.com/Subscribe

      1) It’s usually a lot of thinking. I’d say I spend 6 months-2 years thinking about a story before outlining anything. I jot notes, sketch scenes, etc, and let the world develop. When that’s done I usually have enough to set into a chapter-by-chapter event/plot outline.

      2) It depends on if you’re publishing it yourself or getting a publisher. Publishing it yourself, you have to manage everything and you’re also usually the one holding things up. For me, it takes about 4-5 months to publish a book between writing, editing, rewriting, proofreading, cover art, marketing, etc… With a traditional publisher the sales cycle is a lot longer, upwards of a year, even.

      3) Love your characters. If you aren’t loving them 100% of the time change something to make it so you are. If you can’t love them how can you expect the reader to? That’s my motto!

      Love and hugs back at’cha!

      Reply

  14. Kristi
    July 19, 2016 @ 5:07 pm

    Just finished reading the series and I loved it. Although this is the proclaimed end of the Air Awakens series, do you think there might be another series in the future in this universe with these characters? I’d love to see Vahlla through her pregnancy. Also I’m curious how Jax and Elecia will come together.

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      July 20, 2016 @ 12:58 pm

      It’s not impossible! The world is very big and I know the greater timeline of how things play out in it.

      Reply

      • Kristi
        July 20, 2016 @ 9:34 pm

        Thank you, that’s good to hear. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that one day I might read more of how their vortex spins.

        Reply

  15. Qamarah
    July 26, 2016 @ 3:23 pm

    Hi, I really enjoyed the series! I appreciated the growth in Vhalla over the books (years) and same goes for Aldrik. But what I particularly appreciated was the ‘tortured romance’ -although I was hoping for Aldrik to off his Dad at one point :)….
    Had me laughing,crying and hooked all the way…..
    Can’t wait for you new series…
    Qamarah

    Reply

  16. Heather
    August 2, 2016 @ 5:42 pm

    Will there be a sequel series to the air awakens series. I felt like the epilogue was setting up for books to follow in the future?

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      August 7, 2016 @ 11:46 pm

      I have yet to announce a sequel, but the world is very large and I know how it progresses in the future.

      Reply

      • Heather
        August 10, 2016 @ 3:58 pm

        Would love to know what you know lol.

        Will the series be available on kindle in the UK any time soon?

        Reply

  17. Raluca
    August 15, 2016 @ 6:07 pm

    Just wondering if there is any chance of having more of the story told from Aldrik’s perspective (maybe even the whole story :D)? I loved the glimpses into his mind you gave us through Tales from the Front and think it would be amazing to have more.

    Looking forward to the Loom saga too!

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      August 16, 2016 @ 3:43 pm

      No plans of that right now, but never say never! 🙂

      Reply

  18. MaëlleGuillard
    September 5, 2016 @ 3:50 pm

    Hello there !

    I was wondering if yours books are gonna be translate for any other country ? Not that I can’t read english, but I understand better in french :3

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      September 8, 2016 @ 12:49 am

      They are currently in the process of being translated into Turkish. I’d love to have them in more languages! But, to do that, I need publishers who are interested in bringing the books into new countries. It’s a process I’m pursuing, but it moves slowly and depends on a lot of people beyond me. Hopefully someday! 🙂

      Reply

  19. Kate
    September 6, 2016 @ 4:51 pm

    I just finished the series and I couldn’t put it down. I finished the fifth book in one day.

    I’m hoping for a continuation of some sort with the characters/world to learn more about the Solaris family and what happens after the fifth book ends.

    Your writing, character building, and world sculpting has been such a joy to read.

    Thank you for the adventure!

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      September 8, 2016 @ 12:38 am

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it! There is a Golden Guard prequel trilogy on the horizon for sure. So you can look forward to that! As far as a continuation… never say never!

      Reply

  20. Saku
    October 12, 2016 @ 12:00 am

    Hi Elise,

    I just finished reading Crystal Crowned and wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed the whole series. It was absolutely fabulous. I loved the characters and the story line. I felt that the plot evolved beautifully. The narrative had a great flow I did not skip a single page while I was reading (As I sometimes tend to do if I don’t enjoy a particular scene in a book).

    The best part was how the heroine evolved. I have felt that in some fantasy books with female leads, the heroin tends to get bratty. Vhalla doesn’t. You can practically see her maturing throughout the series. And Aldrik!! I would marry him if I could. 🙂

    So, all in all, I loved the whole series. I think you did Amazing work! And I hope you keep on writing more. I wish you all the very best!

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      October 12, 2016 @ 8:23 am

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it! My next series, The Alchemists of Loom, starts in January, so I hope you’ll give it a read! Also, if you have time, don’t forget to leave an honest review of the Air Awakens books on your favorite retailer(s) as it really helps other people find the books 🙂

      Reply

  21. Ariel Smith
    December 6, 2016 @ 8:49 pm

    Hello Ms. Kova, hope all is well. First, let me start off with an applause for Air Awakens, it’s a very unique, compelling story with such creativity. I am glad you decided to published your own story which takes a lot of courage and even more hard work, but you didn’t sit around and wait after rejections. That..is really inspiring. Second, Clarity is one of my favorite songs from Zedd which I find amazing how you connected this song with your story. I noticed you graduated with a business degree and I wanted to ask you for some advice. I been writing my own stories and poems for years, I love to write and always wanted to be an author. However, I am currently and about to graduate with an advertising and marketing degree. First I will get my associate’s then I’m heading for my bachelors. How in the world did you managed to find time to write and not get sucked into the business world? How did you stay focus on your writing? You really give me hope I can still be a successful author without majoring in English or creative writing. So please, do tell. 🙂

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      December 7, 2016 @ 9:48 am

      Most successful authors I know didn’t major in English or Creative Writing, actually. The cool thing about writing a book is that if you’re open to continuing to learn the craft and skills – if it’s your passion – you can make it happen (with the help of a good editor and a few good beta readers ;D ). If I were you, I would keep focused on school to make sure you get the most out of it. Keep writing as a hobby, but don’t push too hard in two areas. I didn’t publish my first book until 3 years after I finished my masters. However, I would also suggest that for projects where you can “choose an industry” or “choose a product” you can make it book-centric to learn about the publishing world. That being said, I wouldn’t make ALL your projects focused on this. It’s the skills I learned doing other things that have helped me in some of the best ways for publishing. So learn all you can!

      Reply

  22. Æryn Tinney
    April 23, 2017 @ 6:48 am

    I absolutely love the Air Awakens series, but I’ve put off finishing it completely because I wanted to buy physical copies of the books. I live in Ireland and shipping 5 books separately is expensive, so I was wondering, will there be a physical box set available in the near-ish future? Kindle is great and all, but when I like a series enough I want the physical copies!

    Reply

    • mm EliseKova
      May 9, 2017 @ 1:09 pm

      Unfortunately, since AIR AWAKENS is still self-published, doing a physical boxed set is logistically impossible. Hopefully, this changes in the future, someday. But, for now, it’s not an option.

      Reply

  23. What’s on my Shelf — Air Awakens Series – Writing Lynn
    August 22, 2017 @ 1:13 am

    […] Air Awakens, the Complete Series by Elise Kova […]

    Reply

  24. Maya
    May 21, 2018 @ 11:14 pm

    It was a good book. A little confusing in the beginning because it talks about all the different areas and how people get the magic, but it gets explained later on. I like how it shows the impact the characters had on each other and what other people think of them. It also talks about the choices they made and why they made those choices. The book itself was a little small, it was only around 375 pages. I don’t really like how they introduce 15 characters in 3 chapters but don’t explain anything about the actual character. however, over all it was a good book. Great Job!

    Reply

  25. Liat
    October 7, 2018 @ 8:34 pm

    I read the whole Air Awakens series in 2 days. I loved it. Any hopes for a story between Elecia and Jax? The epilogue from Elecia’s perspective hints at feelings from her end, and I always thought he had some for her too, and both squishing them down for their own reasons…

    Reply

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