SF Benson, a Michigan native, resides in Georgia with her husband, a human daughter, and a couple of miniature fur kids (two female short-haired guinea pigs). At one time she wrangled a household which included three Samoyeds, saltwater fish, a hamster, and three guinea pigs.
SF has always wanted to be a writer, but she’s had a variety of positions ‘feeding’ her creative brain—blogger/reviewer, customer service representative, veterinary assistant, marketing assistant, editorial assistant, receptionist, and even cashier for women’s clothing and shoes.
She’s an avid bookworm who appreciates a well-written book regardless of genre. SF prefers to write stories which allow her to answer the question “what if”. She leans towards writing strong, diverse protagonists set in dystopian, science fiction, or paranormal worlds.
What kind of books did you read as a kid? I read a little of everything from Laura Ingalls Wilder to Sylvia Plath. If it sparked my interests, which constantly changed, I read it. My longest obsession was probably with witches. I read a lot of nonfiction books on the topic.
When did you decide to become an author? It wasn’t a conscious decision. I wanted to write for years, but it never happened for me. I believe it was due to writing in the wrong genre, women’s fiction. It didn’t suit me and I gave up. It wasn’t until my husband approached me after I quit my last job that I plunged forward. I was stuck in the job search, nothing was happening. He told me to pursue my dream, but do it 110 percent. No half-attempts. So I entered NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) in 2014 and completed my first rough draft.
What is your favorite thing about writing for teens? Writing for young adults is all about the possibility. There are so many things that can happen in your life depending upon what path you choose. Young adults, for the most part, make choices without restriction. New adults don’t have enough experience to challenge their choices. Everything is speculative. I love asking the ‘what if’ question, speculating the possibilities, which is what life is about for these two demographics.
What authors or books inspire you? Far too many to list, but if pressed I would start with Veronica Roth. It was her Divergent series that opened my eyes up to the genre. I’d follow up with Stacey Marie Brown who showed me the fun which could be had with paranormal fiction.
What advice do you have for teens who want to be authors? Don’t stop writing—ever! I wish someone had told me that back in the day. I know everything happens for a reason, including all the numerous jobs I’ve had, but I feel if someone had said that to me I may have finished a manuscript before 2014.
What do you want readers to take away from your book? The Alliance Chronicles is a series about fighting for what you believe in. Tru Shepard believed in her right to make her own choices in her life. She fought, and grew up in the process, for her belief. She had to step out of her own way, put aside her fears and doubts, and embrace the possibility of greatness. Sometimes we have to do things we’re uncomfortable with in order to achieve our desires.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/SFBenson/e/B01DI9Z58Q/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1
The Alliance Chronicles series
The Alliance Chronicles is a post-apocalyptic series which takes place after the fall of the United States in the year 2025. The American Republic is run by scientists and technologists. Creativity is banned. A mandatory vaccine, given to only seventeen-year-olds, has weird side effects.
Tru Shepard and Zared Aoki, two teens with a shared past, team up to uncover the secrets of the New Order government. The fate of humanity depends on their success.
DATE OF PUBLICATION: MARCH 31, 2016
GENRE: YOUNG-ADULT DYSTOPIA
PAGE COUNT: 310
AVAILABLE FORMATS: PAPERBACK (ISBN: 9780692677711), EBOOK (ASIN: B01DO6QILQ)
PURCHASE LINKS: (paperback) http://amzn.to/22FZE4h
Tru Shepard is a teenager committing acts of treason living in war-torn New Detroit circa 2025. The New Order, a government run by scientists and technologists, has banned creativity in favor of STEM education. In the eyes of the American Republic’s leaders, creativity is a waste of time which doesn’t foster a strong society. Besides Creatives have a tendency to speak out against the government.
Tru gambles with her life every time she steps foot in the Underground, a restricted warehouse district where Creatives congregate. She breaks the city-wide curfew to hang out with friends enjoying banned music and expressing herself on ancient sketchpads. Recently, the New Order has issued sweeps of the sector to find renegades.
But being picked up by the NDPD, New Detroit Police Department, is the least of her concerns. In ten days Tru will be seventeen, the age scientists consider a government-mandated inoculation to be totally safe. Although officials claim the vaccine is the country’s best defense against another worldwide pandemic, stories circulate amongst Creatives about individuals who lose their abilities after its administration.
Tru has her Inoculation Day orders. Failure to report is punishable by death, but if she can’t express herself artistically, she’d prefer dying.
Just when she despairs on what to do Zared Aoki, someone from her past, enters her life. He may be just as dangerous as the vaccination Tru needs to avoid. He claims to know the real reason behind the vaccine—a government project tampering with the fundamental design of humanity.
The two set out to prove the true nature of the vaccine and alert the public to its devastating effects. But is the world ready to listen?
Rescue: the Alliance Chronicles, Book Two releases August 5, 2016.