PROFILE 2023 — Starting the next chapter
Published 12:00 am Friday, March 31, 2023
South Point author wraps up trilogy, prepping new projects
For Hannah Boggs, of South Point, 2023 will be a big year.
Not only will she graduate from Marshall University’s College of Business in December, but her plan is for this year to also see the completion of a trilogy of novels she has been writing over the past half decade.
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In 2017, Boggs, then 16, completed her first book, “Violent Delights,” a young adult, paranormal thriller.
“It starts with an ordinary girl moving to new town, where she happens to encounter these two famous magicians who are twins,” Boggs said of its premise. “And she gets tangled up in their world.”
Boggs attended St. Joseph Catholic School in Huntington, but had to withdraw in middle school due to health reasons. She ended up enrolling in the online Ohio Connections Academy as a sophomore and graduated early in 2020, the same year she released the second book in the series, “Fire and Powder,” also titled from the works of William Shakespeare.
Boggs began her first book when she first became sick and, in many was, she said it was a chance to work through her frustrations and feelings of isolation. The protagonist of her series also deals with an illness.
While she had written stories as a child, she said it was as a teenager that she became serious about her craft, beginning with encouragement she had from writing poetry.
On the first book, she worked with an independent publisher. It was at their suggestion that the story was expanded.
“It’s very funny,” she said. “Initially, ‘Violent Delights’ was supposed to be standalone. And I had vague idea of a second story that takes place 20 years later. But, on our first call together, they said, ‘This is a trilogy, right?’ And it became a trilogy after that.”
She said, after finishing the first book, she began to ponder how to continue the story.
“So it was not initially a trilogy, but it kind of came into it,” she said. “But I’m happy with the way it’s turned out. I feel like it’s a lot better than it was.”
For the second novel, she self published and physical copies of her works have been available through local bookstores, author events and online through Barnes and Noble, Amazon and Books-A-Million. They are also available digitally.
For “Violent Delights,” she received a glowing review from Jon Fitch, the CEO and founder of Accurance, a book production company for authors .
“I have been in book publishing more than two decades and seen, read and worked on more than 80,000 books,” he said. “Hannah Boggs work shows so many signs of pure talent at such a young age. I can honestly say I have never read any work by such a young author that was better quality that this. The settings, development of character and style reflect what should decades of writing experience, but they show up here in a young lady of just 16.”
The book also won for Best Paranormal Book in the genre categories from the 2019 Indies Today Awards, which are open to all self-published and independent authors, including those using small press publishers.
She said she has mostly concentrated on the local market, but has received positive feedback from afar as well, including fan art from England.
“And I believe it was my first author event, there was actually one girl I didn’t know, but she had seen that my book was going to be on there and she had traveled from several states over to get it in person,” Boggs said. “It was very flattering. She said she really didn’t know anything about it, but thought it looked intriguing.”
She doesn’t have a specific release date for the trilogy’s conclusion, but plans for the final installment, “Violent Ends,” to come out later this year.
She said part of the excitement for her in wrapping up the story is the chance to try new things, particularly standalones that aren’t tied to a series.
“I have several different book ideas for the future,” she said. “I do want to continue writing. It’s just a matter of settling on ideas. And most of them do fall in the same genres of thriller and horror, but do have ideas that are fantasy or sci-fi that I’m interested in expanding on.”
She said she would also like to do an anthology of short stories and eventually would like to do another series.
“I have other trilogies planned that I’m excited about,” she said. “I want to pursue a literary agent for them, because I think they are that good and I want to get them out there.”
On her influences, she said Agatha Christie is her favorite writer, but, rather than focus on specific authors, she is more of a genre fan.
“I gravitate toward mysteries, thriller, horror and occasionally go into fantasy,” she said. “I’ve been doing lot more reading recently, especially when it comes to the technical side of writing.”
She says she is a big movie fan, with similar themes in her favorites.
“I like lot of slasher and gothic stuff and thrillers,” she said, noting that Wes Craven’s “Scream” series was a big influence on her first book, as was the 1980s black comedy “Heathers.”
Boggs, who shoots her own book covers, has been pursuing an interest on the other side of the camera, as well, having acted in a proof of concept video for a local film project, “Wish,” by Huntington filmmakers the Vanscoys.
She said she auditioned for the project after seeing a posting at Pullman Square in Huntington.
“I was given a flashback part,” she said of her role, her first experience in filmmaking. “It was a lot of fun.”
Boggs said she plans to spend the year balancing her time between writing and working toward graduation, in which she will be part of the College of Business’s first online graduating class.
She has majored in business, and has three minors — management, marketing and creative writing.
“Ultimately, I’d love to open my own bookstore/bar,” she said. “I want to keep writing, but have a place where I can sell books and promote independent and local authors and give them a place where they can do book signings.”
For more information on Boggs’ work, visit www.hannahboggsbooks.com.