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INTERVIEW: A.M. Weald is Somewhat of a Discovery Writer

Welcome to the Tuesday Author Interview with Christina Boyd for the Who, What, When, Where, and Why.


CHRISTINA: I have to tell you, I am a sucker for a good cover. Even if I have never heard of the author, if I am intrigued by the cover and then the book information, I'm going to buy it. That's what happened when I first saw A.M. Weald's book Even if We're Broken on Twitter/X in April. And the book did not disappoint. I immediately had to contact her for an interview.

What is your current project or latest release?

A.M. Weald: My latest release is a contemporary romantic drama (elsewise known as romantic women’s fiction or romance-women’s fiction crossover), called Even If We’re Broken, about two over-forty archaeologists battling their own mental health issues, coming together for an archaeology job after many years and an ocean apart. Related is a novel I’m developing, a sort of sequel Broken, taking place in the same universe/timeline, about feral cat and kitten rescue.


CHRISTINA: Even if We're Broken had all the gut emotions.

Feral cat and kitten rescue? Interesting...

Is there one of your characters you most identify with and why?

A.M. Weald: Out of all the characters I’ve written, I think I most identify with Esben Veholt from Even If We’re Broken. I gave a lot of my mental health issues and (in a way) vocation to both novels' main characters, but I also gave Ben my lived experience with back pain. There’s a lot of parallels between him and me, though his circumstances tied to the shared emotions are entirely fictional.


CHRISTINA: And so well done!

What comes first, plot or characters?

A.M. Weald: It’s a bit of a mix, since I write primarily character-driven stories where the character and their growth is the plot. When developing a story from a basic premise, plot will be strongly influenced by characters as they are developed and as character arc needs arise. But some stories I’ve written definitely began with a character that I simply wanted to write a story around.

CHRISTINA: Do you hide any secrets in your novels that only a select few might know?

A.M. Weald: Yeah, kind of! They’re very much “iykyk” or “you had to be there” little Easter eggs… In Even If We’re Broken, there are absolutely “just archaeologist things” that those familiar with the profession may chuckle over.


CHRISTINA: Still, it didn't feel like I was being preached to or talked over. It felt authentic.

Panster or plotter or hybrid?

A.M. Weald: I set out a plan, and then that plan gets blown to pieces as I write, so sometimes I re-plan, and it can end up in a vicious cycle of infinite planning. So, a hybrid for sure, and definitely somewhat of a “discovery writer.” I need to allow myself to plan less and discover more, frankly. I think I write best that way, with a less rigid plan.


CHRISTINA: Makes sense. Give yourself enough direction and wiggle room as the story comes to life.

Best advice for new writers:

A.M. Weald: Don’t sweat if you find out that the amazing story/plot you thought up is “already written” because I guarantee that it isn’t. Even if the plots are similar, you didn’t write it. Bring your own lived experiences/imagination into the story’s development, and it will be different enough to be your own.


collage of photos of a woman digging at excavation site
Weald at field school in England at a Roman villa excavation. (2003) Photo courtesy of author.

CHRISTINA: That is a good reminder. I constantly worry that by the time I get my book to market, someone will already have written my book. Or worse, I see it played out on Netflix.

If you could tell your 21-year-old self anything, what would you share?

A.M. Weald: Writing is an actual thing you can do! Put that imagination and those daydreams to use! Ditch the Classics major and take (creative) writing classes! I don’t regret my Anthropology/Archaeology major that later turned into a PhD, but I do regret never taking writing/editing courses. They would have especially come in handy later when I started editing professionally.


CHRISTINA: Is there a time period you would like to set a future story?

A.M. Weald: I have a strong desire to write something that takes place in the Pleistocene, probably because I grew up reading Jean M. Auel’s Earth’s Children series and am fascinated by prehistory. Will I ever do it? Who knows…


CHRISTINA: Favorite contemporary author:

A.M. Weald: That’s a bit like asking me what my favorite song is—there’s too many faves to choose from. But I will say that I need Gail Honeyman and Rachel Yoder to publish more books immediately.


CHRISTINA: Dreamcast your next book:

A.M. Weald: So, I’ve been developing a sort of literary quiet post-apocalyptic thing since 2018 that, in my head, the lead characters are portrayed by Natalie Portman, Keanu Reaves, Oscar Isaac, and Amandla Stenberg. I was going to write it, but then the Pandemic happened, so it was shelved in 2020. I think about it all the time, though. The plot and character arcs and emotions are there.

I just need to write it.

CHRISTINA: Yes, get to it! Thanks so much for taking the time for this interview. I hope the words flow on your next project.


A.M. Weald writes adult character-driven fiction in a mix of genres from the romantic to the speculative. She is a freelance editor, a semi-retired archaeologist, and a neurodivergent xennial who thinks about cats way too often.


Connect with Weald at her website.


Great interview, and thanks for introducing me to a new author, Christina! Even If We're Broken sounds like just my kind of read. Thanks!

Replying to

Yes! Smart. Emotive. And engaging. Like the archeologists revealing their finds, this multi-layered novel is more than I thought. If you are looking for a thought-provoking Romantic fiction, this is easy to recommend.

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