Today I am interviewing Jade Sisti, debut author of the new paranormal novel, Stagnant Souls.
◊ ◊ ◊
DJ: Hey Jade! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Jade Sisti: Sure, I’m an artist called aloneintown. I sell my art as well as teach it. I’ve been writing for as long as I’ve been producing art, forever. They go hand in hand with each other. Aside from articles, this is the first time I ever thought to publish a book.
DJ: What is Stagnant Souls about?
Jade: It’s a future where most people have died off and no one’s quite sure why. In this future, Melody, who’s only ever known her small community, meets Lucius, a ghost, who has been trapped in an abandoned building ever since his death during a mass shooting.
DJ: What were some of your influences for Stagnant Souls?
Jade: I was once into urban exploring and spent a lot of time sneaking around in places I probably shouldn’t have been. I have a fascination with abandoned places. TVs shows like Life After People helped fuel that interest. The idea of the dead came from a night where I couldn’t sleep. It was terrible. I was so physically exhausted that it actually hurt, but my mind was like in a million places at once. There was no way I was getting any rest that night. I thought about that afterword and for whatever reason I thought of ghosts and what it would be like to haunt the same place for ever. I can’t sit still for too long, so I can only imagine what it would be like to be Lucius. Aww, he needs a hug!
DJ: Could you briefly tell us a little about your main characters? Do they have any cool quirks or habits, or any reason why readers with sympathize with them?
Jade: Lucius comes from a world that we’re familiar with, but he’s also spent a considerable amount of time stuck in one spot watching everything change around him. He’s also dead, that’s quite a quirk.
Melody’s family consists of people who aren’t related to her, but love her all the same. That’s awesome for a world lacking people. She’s naïve, but capable and she has Lucius haunting her.
Chase just really needs a hug. He’s a sweet, kindhearted character who just has the most unfortunate luck. He also has the ability to see ghosts, which may or not be that awesome for him.
DJ: Without spoiling anything, how is it that Melody and Chace are able to communicate with the dead, Lucius?
Jade: Chase isn’t alone in that ability. As for Melody, there’s an entirely different explanation for that.
DJ: What is the world or setting of Stagnant Souls like?
Jade: This is a world where most people have died off, so nature’s taken over. Visually my inspiration for this came from locations like Chernobyl, Centralia and Hashima Island. It’s not a terrible future, in the sense that nature can finally reclaim itself. In my story there was no apocalypse or end of the world calamity. It was slow and uneventful. It’s an off the grid kind of life. There’s bits of our current world in there and then it’s a step back in time, where small communities rely on one another.
There are quite a few cults lurking in this world too, all with different beliefs and practices. Also, because there’s so few people around, those that are left are susceptible to prairie fever.
DJ: Midway through the book, you actually change character perspectives. This wasn’t the original plan, correct? What were you originally thinking and why did you change it?
Jade: This is true. The story was originally meant to only follow Melody, but Lucius’ backstory was just too tragic to be read from a second hand explanation. Plus there’s that other character. That particular character’s story is much more important than even I first thought.
DJ: Speaking on planning, are you a plotter or a panster? Why?
Jade: I don’t know, I kind of just make it up as I go along. The general idea for a story comes first of course, but all the details just go along with whatever. I start from the beginning and just keep going till I reach the end. I don’t know how those other writers do it, making up scenes here and there and putting them wherever they please. That’s crazy.
DJ: What was your favorite part about writing Stagnant Souls?
Jade: I was really into Lucius’s backstory and his formal life. Being a teacher, fears of something like that happening to me are possible and it makes him all the more real to me because of it. I also had a lot of fun with Chase and the strange triangle relationship he shared with Lucius and Melody. That’s a hot mess.
DJ: What do you think readers will be talking about most once they finish it?
Jade: Hmm, probably the ending. It’s abrupt. Then again, there’s an undertone of a warning to a particular kind of violence snuck in there a bit. Maybe you’ll notice it, maybe not.
DJ: What was your goal when you began writing Stagnant Souls? Is there a particular message or meaning you are hoping to get across when readers finish it? Or is there perhaps a certain theme to the story?
Jade: Well originally it was just about this ghost and a girl, but with Lucius’ tragic death being what it was and the repeated them of misguided cults and violence, I guess it did become a little themed. I don’t want to throw politics into this, but I’d be lying if I said that didn’t influence the story’s direction.
DJ: When I read, I love to collect quotes – whether it be because they’re funny, foodie, or have a personal meaning to me. Do you have any favorite quotes from Stagnant Souls that you can share with us?
Jade: I’m not a quotes kind of girl, I prefer entire scenes.
DJ: Now that Stagnant Souls is released, what is next for you?
Jade: Why finish the sequel of course! Though I am also preparing for the spring and summer season to sell my art again.
DJ: Where can readers find out more about you?
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M4P3DM2/ref=r_soa_s_i
DJ: Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to answer my questions!
◊ ◊ ◊
*** Stagnant Souls is available TODAY!!! ***
Buy the Book:
◊ ◊ ◊
Melody lives on the outskirts of an abandoned city where Lucius waits idly after having died many years ago. While most of the dead never leave the site of their demise, Melody’s bond with Lucius allows him to haunt her. The two struggle to identify the causes surrounding Lucius’ inability to move on and reincarnate. By solving this issue, Melody hopes that it will allow Lucius, and the other souls, to move to the next stage of the afterlife.
A mysterious man named Chase soon enters Melody’s life. Driven by his own tormented feelings, he assists her in trying to solve the mysteries of the dead. Together, Melody and Chase must try to escape the dangerous cult that has recently made its home in the abandoned city. Melody will need to put her conflicted feelings aside to protect Lucius and her knowledge of the dead, as well as to keep Chase from those who want to abuse his mysterious talent.
Jade Sisti or aloneintown is an artist and author. Here is a link to her Facebook page, .
Her first novel, Stagnant Souls, was just published on Amazon kindle.