Welcome to another Author Highlight, a series where we feature authors like ourselves. You’ll find author interviews, tips, stories, poetry, and more. We aim to entertain, promote, and inspire. Other interviews can be found here.

AJ Super

AJ Super (she/her/they/them) is the author of the Seven Stars Saga, a trilogy published by Aethon Books and Blackstone Audio. Writing full time, they devour fantasy and science fiction in every medium, and even experiments with writing and reading other speculative fiction now and again. They earned two Bachelors’ degrees, and they have been an author since they were old enough to write (and illustrate) a stapled-together ABC book. They are active in several different writing communities and an SFWA member and currently live in Idaho with their fuzz-brained kitties and supportive spouse.

About the Seven Stars Saga

A female-forward villain’s journey, the Seven Stars Saga trilogy follows space-pirate turned queen-of-the-universe Nyx Marcus as she fights to keep her family safe. Discovering that she is the head of a pantheon of AI Gods, Nyx has the power to manipulate anyone touched by her blood through code in her DNA, and her powers are amplified by the others in the pantheon. Through the arc from Erebus Dawning, A Star Reborn, and Queen of the Black, Nyx goes from weak and power-hungry to tyrannical. It is a cautionary tale of how power and strength can corrupt even the purest of intentions.

Seven Stars Saga sci-fi series
Erebus Dawning, A Star Reborn, and Queen of the Black are available through Amazon.

Author Interview with AJ Super

Thank you for appearing on our blog! Tell us about your series, The Seven Stars Saga.

A: The Seven Stars Saga is a trilogy about space-pirate Nyx Marcus and her journey from regular human to AI God. And not just any god, she is the head of a pantheon of other AI Gods with outrageously strong powers. The books are a villain origin to redemption arc, asking just what lengths someone will take to protect what they love. In them, Nyx goes from powerless to power-hungry, and the result of her choices may not be what is expected in the end… I mean, what’s better for a villain’s story? Ultimate redemption, or finding peace with the terrible choices one has made?

Q: We love a good AI character. What’s one of your favorite AIs from other media? 

A: Oh, it has to be the Cylons from Battlestar Galactica, the 2004-09 series. The theme of machines who feel and maybe are even more human than the humans are one of the inspirations for the AI Gods in my trilogy. The series frequently questions what it is to be human. The Cylons are a great study on identity, religion, and humanity, and I doubt that I would have written the Seven Stars Saga the way I did without having seen BSG.

Q: What do you think readers will love about your main character, Nyx? 

A: Nyx is not the stereotypical anti-hero; she’s more of a villain than anything. She wants to protect her family, but in the end, she’s the most dangerous person to her family. She embraces her bad decisions and learns from her losses, and she is relatable. Nyx fights for what she wants and loves the only way she knows how. She’s strong, persistent, and follows her heart…even if her heart is wrong.

Q: How would you describe your book’s ideal reader?

A: Honestly, I think anyone would love these books. They are unique…as is every other book out there. Hahaha! But they tell a story of family and identity, and anyone interested in reading a soft-ish space opera led by strong female (and female presenting) characters should enjoy the story.

Q: Paint us a picture of the setting. Will readers spend most of their time on spaceships?

A: There are definitely LOTS of spaceships…but there are also unique planets full of interesting people and scenery. One planet is a combination of desolate shanty town and high-end luxurious tropical gardens, another is domes on an ice-planet. I had a lot of fun writing different planetary settings and different ships.

Q: If your book were made into a movie, which actors would play your characters?

A: Elizabeth Olsen would be a fabulous Nyx, in my opinion. I loved her in WandaVision and the other MCU movies. I think she would bring a certain amount of villainous gravity to Nyx while keeping her motives pure.

Q: What were your biggest influences when writing this series?

A: Battlestar Galactica for sure. Also Becky Chambers’ books as well as the SyFy TV shows Killjoys and Dark Matter. But I’ve been reading science fiction since I was knee-high-to-a-grasshopper, so I can’t leave out Ursula K. LeGuin and Octavia Butler just as general inspirations for even writing science fiction to begin with.

Q: What comes first for you — the plot or the characters — and why?

A: Neither and both? I almost always start with a theme or over-arcing question. This trilogy started out as an idea about how I could take an extremely over-powered main character and make her have challenges other than those that her power could solve. I wanted to ask the question of what someone with too much power would do to protect what they love. I didn’t have a name, a look, or anything in particular about the character I wanted this question to center around. And since I discovery wrote this entire series, I definitely didn’t have any idea about how the plot would work out.

Q: How much research did you need to do for your book?

A: Since my science is super soft in the series, I didn’t do a ton of research. Just here and there for things like the results of being in a vacuum and little details that would take me down rabbit holes for a day but not anything super extensive. Like I said, my science for this trilogy is soft.

Q: If you were to write a spin-off about a side character, which would you pick?

A: I think I would like to write a story about Nue Marcus, Nyx’s mother. She isn’t alive in the book, though she does get a kind of flashback scene… but Nue was supposed to be who Nyx is and ran away from the responsibility. I’d love to explore why she did that some time.

Tell us in the comments

What’s your favorite AI from other media?

Thanks for joining us for another author interview!

Connect with AJ Super at their website and check out their other socials below. And don’t forget to get your copy of Erebus Dawning, A Star Reborn, and Queen of the Black!

Readers: We love seeing familiar elements to Trials of the Innermost, especially unique landscapes, strong females, and how to use your power. J&K also love the Cylons from Battlestar Galactica! And the Android from Dark Matter. Tell us in the comments what’s your favorite AI from other media?

Unveiling the Magic: Unicorns and Dragons
Author Highlight and Character Interview - Tyler Edwards

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.