Emma Engel is the newest addition to the Lytherus team! Emma is an avid reader with an extensive background in writing, having graduated in 2007 with a BS in English. Emma splits her time between caring for her children as a stay-at-home mom and devouring the latest fantasy and scifi news. As with all of our new writers, we’ve asked Emma to introduce herself. We hope you get to know and enjoy Emma as she begins to settle into the Lytherus team!
Some of my earliest memories are of listening to the BBC radio dramatization of the Hobbit in the backseat of a car, reading the Chronicles of Narnia, and getting to watch the entire original Star Wars trilogy back to back on TV while I was sick. These launched a love of fantasy and science fiction that has only deepened over time leading me to specialize in English in college. I dabble in writing original fiction from time to time, but right now most of my writing time goes to non-fiction. Having been inspired by Christopher Paolini’s story as a young writer myself, I enjoyed following the progress of the Inheritance Cycle on Shur’tugal and started following Lytherus from its first post. I am now honored to become part of the team and share in this “great conversation” with you.
I am first and foremost a book person, constantly struggling to find room for my personal library. No matter how many phenomenal books I find though, my deepest love will always remain with Tolkien’s Middle-earth. After that, my favorite series to study and share about are The Chronicles of Narnia, Harry Potter, and the Star Wars Expanded Universe. But while these may be the foundation for my reading, they are a very small section of a much larger world. I started listing my current favorite authors and decided to stick with the folk whose books I try to get as close to release day as possible: Terry Brooks, Timothy Zahn, Orson Scott Card, Patrick Rothfuss, Brandon Sanderson, Terry Pratchett, Kathy Tyers, David Weber, Ian Tregillis, Seanan McGuire/Mira Grant, Neil Gaiman, Cornelia Funke, Suzanne Collins, Justin Cronin, and Veronica Roth.
My favorite movies tend not be science fiction or fantasy, but this year changed that by adding the first chapter of The Hobbit, which just might be my favorite movie now. Other genre films I really enjoy are the Star Wars movies, the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, the Marvel Universe movies, X-men, Pixar, The Hunger Games, and anything by Christopher Nolan.
At a guess, I’d say I spend more time watching TV shows than movies. I prefer finding time to fit in an hour here and there than commit to a feature film, but all those hours do add up over the months. When I stopped to think about it, I’m really only watching three current shows regularly this year: Doctor Who, Once Upon a Time, and Castle (which I contend is geeky show even if it’s not fantasy or science fiction). But mostly I watch reruns of my favorite shows, Babylon 5, Sanctuary, Stargate SG-1, and Stargate Atlantis, and tune into other shows now and then to catch guest stars such as Felicia Day on Supernatural.
And when I’m really looking to kill time, I do video game occasionally. While Counterstrike, Day of Defeat and Civ are the favorite games for spending an evening online with family, I also play Portal, KOTOR, KOTOR2, Star Wars Battlefront II, and my new favorite, Lord of the Rings Online, where I finally reached the level where I get to use fire arrows.
But what I love most about these genres is the chance to share the adventures they bring with others… with you! I love mining for those special books that get down deep inside and inspire people, and I look forward to sharing some of my finds with you and hearing about yours in return. My greatest hope is that rather than a one sided conversation on my part, we’ll be able to dialog and explore these realms together.