Women's Empowerment Month Collection: AJ Skelly
AJ Skelly, like most women I've interviewed, is multi-talented. We even talked about topics I didn't expect to learn. She's an author and an amazing designer. She always inspires her community, she loves to teach and learn, and her books are amazing.
Kaylyn Gabbert: So I first met you as an author. Was First Shift your first book?
AJ Skelly: Yes, First Shift is my debut.
KG: What is First Shift about?
AS: First Shift is the jumping off point for the Wolves of Rock Falls. There's an accidental nipping, fur no one was expecting, a psychopathic killer, and more. Each story has different narratives and romance, and I love writing romance. They do follow the overlying plotline. They can be read as standalones, but it's better as a series.
KG: I also know you are a woman of many creative talents. How did you find your love in so many creative avenues?
AS: There are two types of people in the world; I'm right-brained. I make jewelry, coffee, tea, books, and book-ish merchandise. I fell into it. Like I had to do it or I felt I would implode. My first creative hobby was jewelry, but I've been writing. My ears are not actually pierced which is why I got into making jewelry. I do the writing stuff for me.
KG: I have a nickel allergy, but I love your jewelry. Is any of your jewelry made with nickel?
AS: I do have nickel in it, but I can make custom orders.
KG: I know your family also has a lot of creative avenues, like you. Was that the start of family bonding, or did they start because they loved your writing and wanted to make fanart?
AS: I commissioned a lot of it. One of my cousins did the watercolor bookmark set for the main cast for Wolves of Rock Falls. My kids love to draw. I talk about my books a lot, so my kids love them. They draw fanart and feel famous when I post their work.
I also found out that AJ is a homeschool teacher to her children. She began homeschooling because she has one kid with autism (8). She has three kids. The school system wouldn't have been ideal since one of his major ticks is noises. The echoes of the noise in the hallways would have been too much for him. Currently, two of three of her children are homeschooled, and the third will join them when they are old enough.