Into the Mind of Jill Williamson

Welcome, Realmies, to our next Into the Mind interview, where we are sitting down with author Jill Williamson to find out more about her. Let’s get started!
What was your favorite movie as a child?
Star Wars. I grew up without a TV. For my ninth birthday, my parents rented a TV/VCR and the original Star Wars trilogy. It was amazing. And it opened up a whole new chasm to my imagination.

A shot of Jill enjoying some snowy weather, believed to have been taken in Narnia…

How many books do you own?
A quick guess is well over 1500.
If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go?
I would go to England to look at castles! My husband has a cousin there, who has given us an open invitation to come visit. We just need some time off and a small pile of money, and we’re all set!
You have a free weekend. What do you do with it?
I read an entire novel. I have a pile of unread novels–probably two hundred. I want to read them!
How many books did you write before being published?
I wrote five, full-length novels before my sixth one was published. Some of those five were in better shape than others. Some were much longer than others. The sixth book I wrote was called Bloodvoices, which Jeff Gerke renamed By Darkness Hid.
What was the inspiration behind your most recently published work?
In my Blood of Kings trilogy, I mentioned that hundreds of years ago Arman (who represents God) bestowed the magic of bloodvoicing upon those with royal blood when the kings first came to the land of Er’Rets. That got me thinking where these ancient kings had come from and why they’d left their homeland. I started playing around with the idea of a prequel series, and I was hooked. The Kinsman Chronicles was born.


What is the #1 writer’s resource that you cannot live without?

The Chicago Manual of Style is the rulebook for fiction writers, and a must have on my shelf.
Are you a panster or a plotter?
I am a hybrid. I love to free write. That’s when neat, creative things happen that surprise me. But if I wrote the entire book that way, it wouldn’t work. So I plot out a chapter outline from beginning to end that will keep me on track. The process is very similar to storyboarding. Things still change and I have to go back and rearrange when I realize things aren’t working, but without that bit of storyboard plotting, I’d be lost.


What are you doing/teaching at the Realm Makers conference?

I am teaching the speculative fiction track. We are going to talk about all the pieces of a spec fiction novel and how to weave them all together. I’m also hoping to spend some time with each of my students to give them some one-on-one mentoring time.


Do you have any questions or comments for Jill or the Realm Makers team? Head on over to our Facebook page and start a conversation! 




Jill Williamson is a chocolate loving, daydreaming, creator of kingdoms and the award-winning author of several young adult books including By Darkness Hid, Replication, The New Recruit, and Captives. She loves working with teenagers and giving writing workshops, and she blogs for writers at She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, two children, and a whole lot of rain. Visit her online at, where adventure comes to life.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. hi Jill! Your track sounds great! My daughter and I loved the Blood of Kings trilogy – I have the first Kinsman book but haven’t had a chance to read it yet. See you in July!

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