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ABOUT ME

BIO

Novelist and screenwriter,

Purveyor of internet romance,

Village witch.

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Alexene Farol Follmuth, also known under the pen name Olivie Blake, is a lover and writer of stories, many of which involve the fantastic, the paranormal, or the supernatural, but not always. More often, her works revolve around the collective experience, what it means to be human (or not), and the endlessly interesting complexities of life and love.

Alexene tripped and fell into writing after abandoning her long-premeditated track for Optimum Life Achievement while attending law school, and now focuses primarily on the craft and occasional headache of creating fiction. Under her Olivie byline, New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling The Atlas Six released 2022 from Tor Books, followed by its sequel The Atlas Paradox and the re-release of her viral literary romance Alone With You in the Ether. She has also been published as the writer for the graphic series Clara and the Devil and a variety of other adult SFF books. As Alexene, she is the author of YA romance (more here).

 

Alexene lives and works in Los Angeles with her husband and goblin prince/toddler, where she is generally tolerated by her rescue pit bull.

FORTHCOMING EVENTS

THE ATLAS COMPLEX UK tour:

  • 19 February, 2024: Discussing Dark Fantasy with Olivie Blake, Elizabeth May and Lucy Holland at The British Library - London, tickets required

March 8-10, 2024: In person panels, Tucson Festival of Books - Tucson, AZ, full panel schedule here

Events
Currently Writing

CURRENTLY WRITING

  • GIFTED AND TALENTED, The Royal Tenenbaums meets Succession meets hot magic nerds in a family dramedy about three magical siblings on the prodigies-to-clinical depression pipeline. Currently in revision for a spring 2025 release.

  • GIRL DINNER, a satirical exploration of feminine craving, the instinct to devour, and ritualized cannibalism. Currently in revision for fall 2025 release.

  • FIRE SEASON, previously UNTITLED HOLLYWOOD GOTHIC, a Gothic romance featuring extended immigrant families, the noble sport of pigeon seduction, and some demonic Santa Ana winds.

  • STARGAZING IS NECROPHILIA, an Alone with You in the Ether-esque romantic narrative about life, disappointment, desire, and the way love shapes us.

FORTHCOMING RELEASES

  • TWELFTH KNIGHT, a YA homage to Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. Another dual POV rom-com, this one features the gender politics of fandom, RPGs, and gaming. Coming May 28, 2024 from Tor Teen under my Alexene Farol Follmuth byline.

  • JANUARIES, a story anthology featuring new short stories and novellas along with some OB cult classics. Think of it as my Eras Tour, coming October 15, 2024.

Currently Reading

CURRENTLY READING

  • INK BLOOD SISTER SCRIBE by Emma Törzs. This book was recommended to me a long time ago by someone whose taste I trust and they were right! I'm very excited to be doing a couple of panels with Emma Törzs at the Tucson Festival of Books in March, so naturally I was excited to pick this up. If you liked the dark academia/secret society aspect of the Atlas series but wish it had been written by someone with more interest in the details of how the magic actually works (lol sorry), I'd definitely pick this one up. The magic system is detailed and interesting, the characters are dynamic, the action is propulsive. Overall a real stunner, and I'd add that if you liked the book aspect of THE BOOK EATERS by Sunyi Dean (in that it's a book by someone who loves books; I don't know how else to explain it really), you'll appreciate that here as well.

  • THE LAST TALE OF THE FLOWER BRIDE by Roshani Chokshi. This is another author I will be doing panels with at Tucson, and I think many of you have probably seen this title on your feeds over the last year. I mistakenly thought of it as Bluebeard inspired given the premise when it's actually Melusine, which... IYKYK why that internal perspective shift is interesting. Again, not to constantly bring this back to me, but it reminds me spiritually of Nightmares and Nocturnes, a story I wrote a few years ago that relied heavily on various fairytales and mythology to build a story within a story. A fairytale by someone who loves fairytales, in other words. The narrative coils tighter as you go, and makes for a moody, atmospheric February read.

  • TO CAGE A GOD by Elizabeth May. If you're a romantasy person, this one will definitely be of interest to you. In terms of world-building tactility it feels a lot like the Grishaverse (it, too, takes inspiration from Slavic culture and mythology and appears to be at least partially based on the Russian Revolution) and involves some very juicy tropes, including queer enemies-to-lovers and blade-to-the-throat, kissing-to-throw-off-suspicion second chance romance. I will be sitting down with Elizabeth May in conversation at the British Library this month to discuss dark fantasy (hers is arguably darker than mine, being what I would call a wartime AU if this were fanfic) and I am very much looking forward to it.

  • THE SEPTEMBER HOUSE by Carissa Orlando. I was going to round out this month of rOmAnCe with some chatter about how excited I am to read YOU SHOULD BE SO LUCKY by Cat Sebastian, which will 100% be incredible and I know this for utter fact, but I'll save that for when the book is closer to being in your hands. Instead, a very funny, "not now, horrors" horror book with an unreliable (but hilariously pragmatic) narrator who chooses to stay in her haunted house due to what initially seems to be the housing market. I found this one very amusing, as I keep saying, because I love a little tone dissonance; I really enjoy when a narrator's reactions contribute to a sense of uncanny absurdity, such as flippantly referring to violent poltergeists as "pranksters." This is another delight with an older female narrator, and while there are some creepy moments that make reading in the dark a little spooky, I definitely recommend it if you enjoy mystery/horror/thriller with some humor.

Currently Listening

CURRENTLY LISTENING

  • Emails I Can't Send fwd: by Sabrina Carpenter. I've been playing this one in the background a lot recently, taking in each song's headspace. Sabrina Carpenter has a real lyrical dexterity; she is very playful stylistically and extremely light-footed, with the kind of voice (narratively speaking) that I'd appreciate in a book. The album also has a mix of moods that I find particularly suitable for morning reflection. My favorite is  "Nonsense," because I enjoy a cheeky fourth wall break, but there are elements to enjoy in every song.

  • Saviors by Greenday. A few months ago I played "Look Ma, No Brains" for Mr. Blake and marveled at how it sounded like I had heard the song before, but in a great way? Like, somehow, even before it existed, I already knew it and it was one of my favorite songs? Mr. Blake agreed with me, and also feels this album reminds us of the pop-punk of our anarchist youth. There are some songs that sound like old Greenday, some that sound closer to Weezer, and regardless there's a familiarity and nostalgia that feels fitting as we enter yet another political hellscape of a year. My favorite on the album is "One Eyed Bastard," which I like to play while I do intervals on the bag because it's fun to say "you son of a bitch you're gonna beg and cower" while you're gasping through recreational pain. (Mr. Blake's favorite is "The American Dream is Killing Me," which is also true, and topically another of my faves for intervals is "Oh No!!!" by grandson.) 

  • Prelude to Ecstasy by The Last Dinner Party. I'll be honest: what I like most about this band is that at the best of times, they remind me of ABBA. The first time I heard them I found it a little shocking that they were virtually undiscovered; I was sure at least one of them had had a successful music career given the quality of production and the very traditional release model. But apparently no? Or not that I can find, anyway. In any case, I enjoy their vibes and have added a lot of their early singles to forthcoming story playlists.

  • How Have You Been? by Giant Rooks. I came to this band via "Fight Club," and if you've been around when it comes to my music taste, I'm sure you'll instantly recognize how much it is a very me song. I enjoy it and (at the time I'm writing this) am very much looking forward to the album's imminent release. Other singles I've recently enjoyed: "I'm in Love" by Jelani Aryeh, "Brain Cells" by Raleigh Ritchie, "Reckless Child" by Milky Chance, "Good People" by Mumford and Sons ft. Pharrell Williams.

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