We conclude this week with Jamie Marchant in the latest guest author interview.
Please introduce yourself, who are you and what do you do?
From early childhood, I’ve been immersed in books. My mother, an avid reader herself, read to us, and my older sister filled my head with fairy tales. When I was about six, I started writing stories about the Man from Mars for my older sister. I devoured every book I could get my hands on, and I wrote my first fantasy novel while in high school—not that it was publishable. Taking into consideration my love for literature and the challenges of supporting myself as a writer, I pursued a Ph.D. in American literature, which I received in 1998. I started teaching writing and literature at Auburn University and discovered the excitement of teaching. But in doing so, I put my true passion on the backburner and neglected my muse. Instead, for a few years, I wrote literary criticism. Then one day, in the midst of writing a critical piece, I realized I had no interest in doing so. What I wanted to do was write novels. My muse thus revived, I began the book that was to become The Goddess’s Choice. I have an entire series planned.
I live in Auburn, Alabama, with my husband and son. I still teach writing and literature at Auburn University.
What first inspired you to start writing?
My older sister and the stories she told me. It made me want to write stories for her. She is still one of my strongest supporters.
Do you read the same genre that you write in?
Mostly, yes. Since my sister’s fairy tales, fantasy has always been my favorite genre, although I occasionally enjoy a good mystery.
If you could work with any author, who would it be and why?
Mercedes Lackey. I love her characters and the deep rich world she creates in her Valdemar books. I’ve frequently said that I’d like to be her when I grow up. She also frequently collaborates with other writers.
How do you get in the mood for writing?
I’m not sure. I’m usually in the mood for writing. I lay back on my couch, prop my laptop on my knees, and I’m set.
Which part of writing do you wish you could do better?
Description. I have a very difficult time describing things. My writers’ group makes fun of me because my early drafts contain a lot of things like: “He entered the room, which needs describing.”
What is your favourite song lyric?
“Forever Young” by Rod Stewart. It reminds me of my son, who is getting older too fast.
What are you working on at the moment?
The sequel, tentatively titled The Soul Stone, is nearly finished. Then there is the third volume of the trilogy and another book set in the same world but outside the trilogy that focuses on the character of Darhour, the captain of Samantha’s personal guard. I also have an urban fantasy novel in the works, titled The Bull Riding Witch, about a princess from a parallel realm who finds herself in the body of a male rodeo bull rider.
Tell us about your latest work and how we can find out more.
The Goddess’s Choice is an adult epic fantasy novel set in the kingdom of Korthlundia. The crown princess Samantha fears she’s mad; no one but she sees colors glowing around people. The peasant Robrek Angusstamm believes he’s a demon; animals speak to him, and his healing powers far outstrip those of his village’s priests. Despite their fears about themselves, their combined powers make them the goddess’s choice to rule the kingdom of Korthlundia.
Samantha’s ability enables her to discern a person’s character through their multi-colored aura, and Robrek’s makes him the strongest healer the kingdom has seen in centuries. But their gifts also endanger their lives. Royals scheme to usurp the throne by marrying or killing Samantha, and priests plot to burn Robrek at the stake. Robrek escapes the priests only to be captured by Samantha’s arch-enemy, Duke Argblutal; Argblutal intends to force the princess to marry him by exploiting Robrek’s powers. To save their own lives and stop Argblutal from plunging the realm into civil war, Robrek and Samantha must consolidate their powers and unite the people behind them.
The Goddess’s Choice is loosely based on a Norwegian fairy tale, “The Princess and the Glass Hill.” Though my favorite fairy tale as a child, it disturbed me that the female character has no name and no role other than being handed off as a prize. My novel remakes the crown princess of Korthlundia into a strong heroine who is every bit as likely to be the rescuer as the one rescued.
You can find out more, including the first two chapters on my website: http://jamie-marchant.com/
Also, check out my other social links, Blog: http://jamie-marchant.blogspot.com/
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-goddesss-choice-jamie-marchant/1110185060?ean=9781936519125
Reliquary Press: http://www.reliquarypress.com/Reliquary_Press/Welcome.html
Buy now from Amazon (US) | Buy now from Amazon (UK)
Thanks to Jamie for sharing her thoughts with us, on Monday Harold Titus takes his place in the hot seat.