Hello, I’m Anna, a UK-based writer of epic-y, gritty, grimdark-y fantasy. My debut novel, Godblind was published by Harper Voyager in the UK and Commonwealth (excluding Canada) in June 2017, by Skyhorse in North America in July 2017, by Bragelonne in France in October 2017, by Blanvalet in Germany in January 2018 (under the title Wachter und Wolfe) and by Luitingh-Sijthoff in the Netherlands in April 2018. Further deals in Poland and the Czech Republic have been signed, with publication dates to be confirmed.
I’m represented by Harry Illingworth of DHH Literary Agency in the UK, and sub-agented by Cameron McLure of Donald Maass Literary Agency in the US. Life as a debut published novelist is weird, terrifying and hugely exciting, and it’s pretty much all down to Harry and Natasha, my UK editor. This wouldn’t be happening if not for their faith in me.
Anna Stephens is my maiden name and pen name, or as I like to think of it, my superhero disguise. Anna Stephens is to me what Black Widow is to Natasha Romanova.
As a child, the highlight of my week was the family trip to our local library, where I’d read anything I thought looked interesting. I was mooching through the adult section by the time I was about 10, but still read kids books as well. So yeah, save your local library – you never know who it’s going to benefit, not just future authors, but anyone who needs somewhere to go, to escape to, that doesn’t cost anything. It’s free escapism, free knowledge. That’s rare these days. Make the most of it.
My writing desk is covered with minions, Doctor Who memorabilia, Wonder Woman and Star Wars figures. Also a dragon I bought for a pound. And the (empty) miniature bottle of champagne my husband bought me the day I got *the* phone call from my agent telling me he loved Godblind and offering to represent me and being the catalyst for the weirdest year of my life.
Heroes include David Bowie, Buster Keaton, Medea and Mary Shelley. Obviously.
I have a 2:1 in Literature from the Open University, a Diploma in Creative Writing from the Open University, am a second Dan black belt in Shotokan Karate, am a qualified massage therapist, a qualified proofreader and a certified First Aider. I began training in Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA), particularly Italian longsword, in the spring of 2018. It’s fantastic.
I also once saw Bev Bevan from ELO in my local curry house.
We played inflatable guitars at our wedding. Deal with it.