The Next Big Thing

I’m always interested to see what everyone’s working on so it’s been fun seeing this meme going around. I was tagged by both the lovely and talented Camille Griep, and the experienced wordsmith Anthony Lee Collins. So here’s a little about my current WIP:

What is the working title of your book?

The Book of Day

Where did the idea come from for the book?

I started with a lot of questions, and found the answers as I wrote.

The ‘chosen one’ trope is a staple in fantasy, and I wanted to try something different with it. My main character, Alessandra, is destined to murder an emperor.  How does she deal with that knowledge? How does an ordinary girl, become a killer? How can she retain her humanity if everyone sees her as a monster? Where do you draw the line between hero and villain?

I also wanted to play with the portal fantasy. What if humans are regularly stranded in another world? How might an alternate society develop if humans from multiple cultures, with present day technical knowledge, made up a significant portion of its population? What would the inhuman locals think of them? How hard would it be to start a new life in another world?

What genre does your book fall under?

Steampunk? There isn’t any steam in the story, but the book shares some of the aesthetic. In this world technology is powered by blood. Bloodpunk? Maybe it’s better classified as dark fantasy.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I have a clear vision for only a few of the characters:
Alessandra Ruiz would be played by Shay Mitchell. Graeme Mollere would be played by Jamie Dornan. Merelle Valois would be played by Gina Torres.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Last in a long line of seers, Alessandra Ruiz knows she will one day murder an emperor, but to defy fate and save one world means she must destroy another.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I will be looking for representation.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About eight months of with breaks in between.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

It might seem like the misfit love child of Boneshaker (Cherie Priest) and the Cirque du Soliel.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

The books of my childhood. I loved and devoured everything fantasy, but it always bothered me that I couldn’t find protagonists (or even minor characters) to identify with. I wrote the novel I wished I could read.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

In Morin the mirrored sky shines endlessly, banishing the dark, but evil things lurk in the shadows, watching and waiting. The blood of a dying lineage fuels machines for commerce, war, and the burning tower that protects the Empire with its light, but nothing lasts forever. Night is coming.

Oh, and don’t forget the giant poisonous mechanical spiders.

Dun dun dun…


Thanks again  Camille and Anthony! Some of you on the list might already be nominated, but I’m passing this on anyway:

  • Shari
  • Cathy Olliffe-Webster
  • Danielle LaPaglia
  • John Wiswell
  • Harry Markov
  • Kristan Hoffman
  • Jennifer Modglin

I’m looking forward to hearing about what you’re working on right now :)

17 thoughts on “The Next Big Thing

  1. You’ve put so much diligence into this book. I’m only a friend, but I’m very proud of how you’ve handled everything about it. It’s going to go the distance, you know?

      1. Also, just huge props for writing the novel you wanted to read. That’s a great artistic expression in itself.

        Thinking I’ll have time to follow up on this in the beginning of the new year. Is that okay?

  2. I’m curious to see how your current draft is different from the draft that I last saw. I get the impression the story has been through several drafts since then…

    The story was already pretty good then, so if you’ve spruced it up a lot I’ll bet it shines even brighter now. Good luck with it, and in finding representation!

  3. Oh good, I’m glad to know this is a project you’re still devoted to, because as I said before, I often think of it. It’s SO compelling, in terms of story, characters, and especially world building.

    As for me, I’m still so in the middle of things that it’s difficult to talk about. Let me see what I can answer…

    - I’m not great with titles, so there isn’t a concrete one yet, but I can tell you that the project name is “Mountain Girls.”
    - Genre is a toughie too. “Action-adventure multicultural YA” is the best I can come up with, lol.
    - We would need a LOT of Asian actresses and actors… Although more likely, Hollywood would just want to white-wash it. :P
    - Um. Mulan meets Hunger Games, minus the televised death-match?
    - I’m big on girl power, and I feel strongly about my Asian heritage, so I would say those are the two driving factors for me in telling this particular story. In terms of inspiration/encouragement for my writing in general, I’d say the love and support of my parents and my boyfriend are what help me the most.

    1. The actress/actor thing is why I can only imagine a couple of my characters. I can’t even think of actors that might fit the roles because there aren’t enough on TV.

      Mulan meets Hunger Games? I’d read that in a heartbeat!

  4. Powered by blood? Interesting. Reminds me of the Nabokov novel Ada where water replaced electricity (including tubes of water under the Atlantic to carry telephone-like signals).

    Oh, and thanks for the kind words. This “experienced wordsmith” is eager to read The Book of Day. ;-)

    (Gina Torres? Damn, now I wish I would have done my entire cast with people from Firefly. Which would sort of work actually.)

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