Welcome Ashlee Hetherington to my virtual comfy couch. Thank you for taking the time to sit with us and answering a few questions. Tell us what Stardust Always is to you. Why did you write something for it?
Stardust, Always was a way for some writers to get together and have an outlet in a community sense for how cancer and, in some cases, the loss of two celebrities, has impacted us or those we know and love. On a personal level, I know so many people who have battled. Some have died and some have lived–all of them won. They fought hard and they fought fearlessly. One of the most important people in my life does after fighting longer than any doctor said she could. She was an aunt, friend, sister, mother, and I’m not the only one who misses her every day. The piece I wrote is what I like to call faction: it is a meshing of fiction and non fiction. She was always so very supportive of me and everyone she cared about. She died before seeing me published and this is sort of a way to honor her support and love. Plus, she worked with kids as a nurse so St. Judes is something she would be thrilled to have supported, so I do it in her memory.
Tell us about your story. What message do you hope to convey to your readers?
As I mentioned, it is faction. I wrote it in a creative writing class, but I had a hard time editing and reworking it because I was so close to it. So it sat, untouched, for years. I’m not a believer in fate, but I’m very pleased it has worked out this way. I hope to show people not a sad story of loss, but a rocky road of life. With snapshots of the ups and downs and the change of dynamics relationships go through I hope to lend a view of those left behind when their world sort of falls away and the survival, I guess, of those who have to go back to life all topsy turvy.
How did Rickman and/or Bowie influence your life?
Rickman was an amazing actor in some of my favorite movies–an angel, an alien, a cheater, a baddie, and so on. Neither were my motivation for being a part of the anthology, aside from a shared bond over cancer.
If you could tell them/ him anything what would it be?
Them meaning Bowie and Rickman? I can’t think of anything other than thank you for inspiring people.
Are there any other stories you would have liked to include with this anthology? If so, where can people find it?
I wrote on my blog, a free write over the memories I had a very long time ago. I’ve neglected it.
Anything you’d like to say to those whose lives have been affected by cancer?
I don’t have regrets with my Faery Lori. I told her I loved her and she knew I was there. I miss things though. I miss coffee and cigarettes. I wish she could have seen my brother get married, me graduate college, my cousins starting families and meeting their kids. I made promises to her I couldn’t keep and it took a long time to forgive myself. So I guess I just want to let people know it is OK to be frustrated and feel cheated and lonely and angry. Please forgive yourself and others.
Do you have any links to social media where fans and fellow authors can reach you?
I should probably start blogging. Haha.
Get your copy of Stardust, Always.
Your Beloved Author,