Astrid V.J.

I'm a USA Today Best-selling and Literary Classics award-winning South African author. I'm also a trained social anthropologist and a certified transformational life coach. I currently live in Sweden with my husband and our two children.

I started writing fantasy novels when I was twelve. Throughout my teenage years I worked on an African occult fantasy series (a little like Children of Blood and Bone), and after finishing high school I wrote a fairy tale retelling of my favourite Grimm brothers' fairy tale, Brother and Sister.

After that I stopped writing for a very long time. University commitments got in the way and I'd managed to make myself believe I wasn't really a writer, that all that work was just the stuff of childish dreams.

Then, one day when I was clearing out in my parents' garage, going through all my stuff I had packed away there, I came across the manuscripts for both projects, which I'd written by hand. I decided to type out the fairy tale and that got my mind going again. I couldn't stop all the stories that crowded my thoughts. They took over and I wrote many of them down on and off over a couple of years. Several people in my family read my fairy tale manuscript and many encouraged me to publish it, but I kept putting that off, because "it wasn't realistic".

In 2019, I took maternity leave and it suddenly struck me that if I was going to let my thoughts keep going like that, I'd never do anything with my book. I also came into contact with a very deep and meaningful thinker who made me understand that there was a lot of merit to my fairy tale retelling. There were things I'd written in that book at nineteen that were important and should be shared.

So I pulled up my big-girl panties, overcame all my fears and doubts and rational objections and went ahead and published The Siblings' Tale as a two-part series.

While I was going through the publishing process, I was struck by an amazing idea for another retelling and wrote Gisela's Passion in a little over two months and published that at the end of November 2019.

Now I've fully embraced my writer's cap because that is something I've always been and no one, not even my "realistic self" can take that away from me. I am currently writing The Wishmaster Series and The Wordmage's Tales in which my readers get to know Viola Alerion, a character who makes up part of the frame story in The Siblings' Tale.

If you're wondering about my African occult series, have no fear, it will be ready eventually, but there is one really big thing I need to do first before I can share it with my fabulous readers...

In the meanwhile, here's to showing my fears who's the boss and deciding for what's really important in my life! And then just before Christmas I got the best gift ever. Aspiring, Part 1 of the Siblings' Tale received two Literary Classics Awards: Silver for Young Adult Fantasy and Gold for Fairytales. I am eternally grateful I listened to my intuition and embraced my whole self, writer included.

I've started on a new series, The Wishmaster Series and it comes with a spinoff series, The Wordmage's Tales. These books will be coming out int 2021 and 2022, so stay tuned!

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Titles by Astrid V.J.:

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4.7 out of 5 on Amazon
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4.7 out of 5 on Amazon
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4.3 out of 5 on Amazon
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4.6 out of 5 on Amazon
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