Wednesday, March 22, 2017

100 WRITERS _____ Meet Monica Loo, writer of fanfic and fantasy short stories, she attended our recent #BuySingLit workshop

Note: This post is part of my 100 WRITERS project, find out more here.

I had a nice time at our recent BuySingLit workshop, which I conducted with fellow Marshall Cavendish author Nicholas Yong. Thanks to all the enthusiastic writers who stayed back to chat, or contacted me over FB and email. What I learnt is that there are so many different reasons why someone might pursue the path of writing stories and getting these published. This week, I'm featuring one of the workshop participants, Monica Loo, who is truly passionate about sharing her creative writing with the world. She has great determination too, and that's always inspiring.

I wish all of you happy writing!

— D


Please tell us about your writing journey.
Hi, my real name is Monica Loo, and my pseudonym Ireth Seregon, means Fire Elemental an Irish translation of my name. In 2016, one of my stories is included in my group’s anthology Writingthecity Fresh Fiction from Singapore II. I began writing as a child because I wanted to transform my favourite characters’ tragedies to happy endings. They triggered lots of emotions in me. I had always been riveted by tales of magic rather than cliché plots, so want to write more about fantasy than romance. Helps me explore ‘what would a cat say if he/ she were in this situation’ for instance. Writing is cathartic, as not all people in real life are accepting of your ideas and I don’t want to be repressed. Through fiction, it releases me from the rigid boundaries of real life.

You self-published on CreateSpace. Could you share with our readers what the process was like?
I saw that some new authors like Amanda Hocking took off from CreateSpace and Amazon. While I had been sending out to different publishers, got rejections and lukewarm responses, I thought I would give it a try. At first, I met selfish people who wanted to take advantage of me - I have excellent grammar and vocab so confident don't need to pay for more editing, but they insisted I must, or they wouldn't proceed. The details a bit hazy now, I was on CreateSpace formatting and stuff about 2012- 13, because everything is Do It Yourself. I find that the FAQs not much use, the one great thing is ISBN is free. I don’t feel lonely as some authors have shared, as I’m someone who relishes solitude but it could be hard because of traditional thinking parents, lack of moral support. However, I’m grateful to have couple of friends and ex-teachers who are not in Sg, believing in me! Most of them I met through fanfiction net talking about anime and what kind of fiction we like.

Why did you choose to write about elves? 
Because they are not boring mundane humans lol! The obsession kicked in from Hellboy II's Nuada Silverlance, Drizzt novels and Dragonage with their various backgrounds that intrigue me. Other than their perfect appearances, the general lore is elves are immortal, magical and skilled protectors of nature. Drizzt is a famous dark elf by RA Salvatore. At the moment my favourite game/ passion is Dragonage, in it Elves are not immortal, they are persecuted and enslaved by humans--- that's why Bioware is so successful  and has compelling storytelling and while gaming I can learn from them the pros and cons, what clichés etc.

Get Monica's book —

Author's profile —

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Read more 100 WRITERS interviews —