Where Giants Fall Anniversary Author Panel

One year ago, on this day, Where Giants Fall launched.

It was a successful launch, and quite a big one! Hosts Angela R. Watts and Michaela Bush are very honored to have published such amazing authors. This anthology has truly changed lives!

In celebration of the fantasy anthology’s one year anniversary, we’re doing an author panel with a few of the WGF authors!

This part features Matt Starr, Sarah Ryder, and Angela R. Watts!

What inspired you to write your piece in the Where Giants Fall anthology?

Angela R. Watts: I didn’t see many stories of Vikings, and the idea struck me… What if there was a Viking that wasn’t physically strong? So I wrote what came to me. The main character of The Beasts of the Sea is a crippled boy, and when he thinks the only purpose for his life is to sacrifice it to the beasts, things go awry. 

Matt Starr: 1) I wanted to self-publish my first book in 2022 and 2) I wanted to try and write in-universe shorts for third-party publications that could then be used to market the aforementioned self-published material, so I decided to coincide my release with the anthology and I made sales on the indie book I wouldn’t have otherwise made if not for the opportunity the anthology gave me.

Sarah Ryder: Believe it or not “What the Darkness Fears” was actually my 5th attempt as I kept getting stuck on what the theme “light in darkness” looked like as odd as that sounds, haha. So it was actually my mom and sister who gave me the basic idea of an enemy being locked in prison and rebels from the opposite side choose to break him out, giving him hope. The story took off from there and Archer and Co were born. So anyone who likes my story has my family to thank for its existence!

How did your story change you as a person?

Angela R. Watts: A large theme of The Beasts of the Sea is that each life, no matter how ‘weak’ or small, is meaningful and significant. I needed that reminder a great deal years ago when I wrote the story.

Matt Starr: It forced me to think about what kind of story can be told in less than 10,000 words, and I didn’t want to settle for writing a functional first chapter or prologue of a larger work, even though that’s what the larger marketing advice told me I ought to do. 

Sarah Ryder: It reminded me that I’m a pantser, that I write best on the fly and off the cuff 99% of the time. Also to just love the process of creating a new cast and adventure from nothing again as I was struggling with that at the time of writing “What the Darkness Fears”.

Was Where Giants Fall your first publication?

Angela R. Watts: No, I had novels and anthologies published previously. This was my first anthology that I hosted with my dear friend, Michaela, though. It was a lot of fun to host and publish these authors!

Matt Starr: It was my first written publication, I had been “published” in student short film competitions previously. 

Sarah Ryder: Yes! And I was so shocked and surprised when I found out it was accepted!

What was the most enjoyable part of launching this anthology for you?

Angela R. Watts: I loved having the honor of publishing these stories. I love the community that this anthology has built. It’s a really cool thing to see.

Matt Starr: Writing the short story. I love writing in the universe of Gatekeepers, even after (now) years of doing so.

Sarah Ryder: Seeing what it was like working with editors as I had never had that experience before.

What writerly things have you done since this anthology launched?

Angela R. Watts: I have published a few novels, written over a dozen books, had short stories accepted and published in other anthologies, and the like. I’ve got about 7 novels launching this year, excluding anthology launches. I’m also writing my next adult fantasy series! It’s going well.

Matt Starr: Developed and self-edited the sequel to my debut. It’s scheduled for a professional edit at the end of March. I was hired to write a book by a friend from high school who was impressed with my entry in the anthology. Ironically enough, it was an animelit novel and I accepted the job at the same time as the Ganbatte! anthology announced it was taking entries.

Sarah Ryder: I’m working on my Christian epic fantasy series, Cre Talee Chronicles, of which I have both books one and two written and mostly edited and am working (slowly) on book three. I also have a million ideas on the back burner of my brain (seriously, it is SO overcrowded back there), but Cre Talee is my main focus at the moment as it’s the series I hope to indie publish first. 🙂

What can readers expect from you next?

Angela R. Watts: As I mentioned, 7 launches this year: 4 middle grade books, and a sci fi space opera adult series (OBSESSED with this story world, y’all). I’m aiming to wrap up the next dark fantasy series this year, as well, so that should launch shortly after. I’m hoping I’ll also have time to do a standalone novel or two to launch this year, as well as finalize my debut children’s picture book. You can subscribe to my newsletter for updates: angelarwatts.com

Matt Starr: I hope to launch the  sequel to Gatekeepers: Crusade of the Emerald Gale either this year or very early next year, the working title is Gatekeepers: Across Warring Lands. I’m also working on growing my Insta and TikTok accounts;



Sarah Ryder: Hopefully the release of Cre Talee book one in the near future! Nothing for certain yet, but I hope soon. 😉 As for Archer and Co, to answer anyone who has wondered if I will continue their story, in short I would love to but it’s not my first priority nor do I have a solid storyline for a larger book or even a series yet. But Lord willing it will happen! And for those who want to keep up with my writing, the books I read, and all other manner of adventures I get into, you can follow me on my YouTube channel, Sarah’s Tangled Tales!  https://youtube.com/@sarahstangledtales


How much did YOU change in the last year? Let’s chat below!

Thanks for reading, and be sure to pick up your copy of Where Giants Fall. It’s on SALE till March 3rd for only $1.99! BUY NOW!

God bless,

Angela R. Watts

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