The official bio I send to reporters
When S. M. Boyce graduated with a degree in creative writing, she realized that made her well-qualified for serving French fries. It would take years of writing hundreds of thousands of words of all kinds before she became the fantasy and horror novelist she is today.
Boyce is known for action-packed epic fantasy, powerful heroes, and riveting magical stories filled with twists and intrigue. And, of course, a bit of humor sprinkled through it all. Prepare to get lost in the journey.
The real me
S. M. Boyce is a pseudonym I’ve had since middle school. I’m really Sarah Michelle Boyce, but the nickname “Boyce” suits me fine. It’s my writing hat. My creative hat. My it’s-totally-legal-to-kill-this-person-because-he’s-fictional hat.
(GASP did she just tell us her real name?!)
Some readers call me Sarah, but I prefer Boyce. So, you know, 10 internet points if you do it right.
I’ve thought long and hard about what to share with you here. For the longest time, I was floored and flattered that people want to know anything at all about me.
I like lists, so hey. Let’s try a list.
When I was 16, I got the idea for what would become the Grimoire Saga. Intimidated by my lack of experience, I sat on the concept because I didn’t think I could make a living from writing books.
When I was 21, I graduated from Florida State University with a dual degree in Creative Writing and Marketing. I loved writing, but hadn’t yet figured out how to make this whole pay-the-bills thing work.
When I was 23, I published my debut novel, Lichgates (Grimoire Saga #1), while working full time as a software tester. (I have a natural gift for breaking things. The developers loved that, especially those bugs I found close to launch time…)
Two weeks later, I held my paperback for the first time and cried like a friggin’ baby. In the parking lot of an apartment complex. In the rough part of town. Fun times.
When I was 24, Lichgates (Grimoire Saga #1) hit the #6 spot on Amazon’s Top 100. I was in talks for optioning the film rights. Even though it fell apart, I was still excited. Maybe I could make this writing career thing work after all.
When I was 25, a stranger recognized me for the first time. I lost my shit with excitement. There was giggling involved. I was fangirling my fan. I’m pretty sure I looked like an idiot.
When I was 26, I quit my day job. Thank god. My goodbye cake said “Fine, Sarah, just leave.” I loved it.
I still talk to some of them.
When I was 27, I drove across the country and moved to Washington state. It was life-changing and terrifying and fabulous. After unexpected mold and health issues, I wrote my first horror novel as a means of venting the anger.
Dark times. I got better.
In the years that have followed, I’ve explored, screwed up, learned, succeeded, tried new genres, ghostwritten, started new pen names, and connected with hundreds of fellow authors the world over to hone my skill.
I consider myself a lifelong learner, and the beauty of writing is that there’s always room to grow. Though I’m proud of my abilities, I know there are always more techniques to learn, more people to meet, more readers to speak to, and more connections to be made.
The only failure is in giving up entirely, and thus every mistake has brought me here, to where I am. As I look at this new chapter in my writing career, I’m excited to see what I discover.
And, of course, who I get to meet.
As a fiction novelist, I plant seeds. That’s my job. These seeds are subtle, almost invisible when you read the story, and they grow slowly over time. The themes of self-reflection, connection, heart, bravery, self-discovery, and more in my novels… all of those blossom through the months and years that follow finishing a novel.
It’s a blessing to see something click for someone, when they realize years later that a certain scene or character taught them how to interact with people, how to solve problems, how to think critically, or how to grow as a human.
That’s a gift. It’s why I do what I do.
An author’s job is to plant seeds, to ignite growth and self-discovery and connection, all through the stories they tell.
I’m glad you’re here. I look forward to the magic we’ll create together.
On a more lightherated note…
I’ve watched Futurama more times than I can count, and my husband thinks I’ve watched it more than the creators of the show. Which… not necessarily a bragging right, but we’re friends here.
My favorite authors are Neil Gaiman, JRR Tolkien, George RR Martin, and JK Rowling. Coraline is probably my favorite book, though that’s a bit like choosing a favorite child. Or so I’m told, anyway, because I don’t have kids.
I enjoy cartoons, animated movies, board games, oreoes, and woo-woo things like crystals and tarot cards.
I make shit up for a living, and I love every second of it. This writing life of mine has been a roller coaster, and half of it is liquor and guessing. My writing career has been a well-researched experiment peppered with “why the fuck not?” moments, and that approach has led me to some of the best decisions of my life.
For instance, my epic fantasy adventure series, the Grimoire Saga is self-published, as is my horror series To Each His Ghost. I don’t know if you know much about the self-publishing revolution, but it’s amazing. I researched successful self-published authors (aka indies) like Joe Konrath and Amanda Hocking before taking the plunge, and it’s given me the chance to write full time. It’s pretty damn fabulous.
My goal? Write unforgettable, haunting stories that steal you away from the world and reveal to you your own hidden power and greatness.
I’ll see you around. Don’t be a stranger.
Author S. M. Boyce