Today I am interviewing Dyane Forde, another friend from the Authonomy website where she recently reached the Editor’s Desk with The Purple Morrow, an outstanding fantasy that I was pleased to support for the last couple of years. Lela
Tell the readers something about yourself, Dyane.
I’m from Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Our country is officially bilingual (English and French) but Quebec is decidedly a French-speaking province. I can speak and write in both English and French—most of my professional work is done in French. I also know some Spanish and I’m learning Japanese on my own, which is a lot of fun. J
I am married and have two children who keep me busy and feeling young—when my knees and back don’t hurt, lol—and a dog named Sparky and a cat named Jack Jack. I picked the cat’s name after watching Cinderella. Those mice were too cute!
When did you…
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I recently read an article about how European-based fantasy is ethnocentric and overdone. The writer lamented that English I speaking writers did not branch out into the other cultures of the world to mine their myths and history to base fantasies on.
Point taken. Europe is not the only culture in the world and other cultures present a rich, largely untapped resource for fantasy writers.
I based my main society on Celts. Maybe I was being ethnocentric. My own heritage is Irish, Welsh, Swedish and French-speaking American Indian. I mine the Celtic and Scandinavian cultures for the first book of the Daermad Cycle. At some point I may touch on the Wyndake culture. I hint that other Earth cultures exist in Daermad as well. If the Cycle goes long enough who knows where it will end up.
It’s important to know that writing what you know is good advice that even fantasy writers should heed. I am most comfortable with my own culture and, frankly, so are most readers. It’s hard not go wrong when you use one thing you know as a foundation to fiction. Then further you go into the story, the further afield you can roam because the reader feels comfortable with the world you started in.
Kate Elliott is one of my favorite writers and she often uses Asian or, most recently Caribbean and North African culture as resources. She does that very well and I admire her skill. Time will tell if I can do as well In my own way.
In the meantime, the Kin od Daermad are not Celts. What was my source for them?
Not sure I want to tell.
The Willow Branch has been through several revisions and I thought I was down to the fine tooth comb — looking for misplaced commas and the occasional typo.
Scott Butcher over on Authonomy is going through the book as I head to publication and suddenly he throws on the brakes. “Who the heck is Earnest?” he asks.
Earnest is Padraig’s pack pony. Sort of like Bela in The Wheel of Time, he’ll show up occasionally throughout the series. But here he is, several chapters into the book and Scott can’t recall reading about him before.
So, he reads back and, sure enough, Earnest has sprung up like a dandelion in an untilled field. “Who the heck is Earnest?”
I went back into my old versions and found where I described him and the sentient horse Joy, but that somehow got removed during one of the revisions.
Can you relate?
This is why, as writers who are seeking to self-publish, we really need a second pair of eyes. Make that multiple second pairs of eyes. To my best guess, the revision that removed Earnest and caused the continuity error happened two years ago. People have read the book since then, but nobody mentioned it, probably because nobody noticed it.
Problem solved, the revision has been revised.
So, can you relate?
I come from New Plymouth, Idaho. where I was born and raised, growing up on a dairy farm. I came up to Alaska at the end of August 2011 to work for room and board as a dog sled handler. How the idea came about to do something like that…
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I’m interviewing Angelika Rust, the author of The Girl on the Red Pillow. Angelika is from Austria, which I got wrong on the first question, but loved the answer so much that I had to run it, even if it shows I’m less than perfect.
Austria! It’s Austria…I’m sorry. It doesn’t make much of a difference, neighboring countries, basically the same language, but…imagine telling a Scotsman he’s English, or a Canadian he’s American. Let’s just say that during the football (soccer, in the US) season, you’ll find that your average Austrian will cheer for any country as long as it’s not Germany, and leave it at that 🙂
I think the language difference makes this story even more remarkable because it is written in English and I couldn’t really sense an accent to the writing. Tell us something about yourself, Angelika.
About me, I’m in my late thirties…
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