Friday, 19 February 2010
Meet Desert Breeze Author - Esther Michell
While unpublished until her twenties, Esther Mitchell spent her life dreaming of writing. She learned to read on such classics as Gawain & the Green Knight and Beowulf. Raised in Europe, with its wide exposure to mythology, history, and the paranormal, she quickly became fascinated by the lore of the unseen, eventually translating into an educational background in parapsychology and a lifetime of study and practice in spiritual healing and counseling.
Life in a fast-paced, on-the-edge military community ingrained her with both an intimate understanding of the military world, and the ability to craft edgy suspense.
At the age of eight, she fell in love with romance, and by the time she was twelve, she had already penned the first of a series of Arthurian romances, and was working on what would later become the futuristic suspense series, Underground.
Always dedicated foremost to her writing, she writes under her real name, and has completed about thirty novels to date, of which ten have previously been published, with more to come. Reviewers and fans alike have dubbed her work “exciting,” “edge of your seat” and “daring.” For more information on either her books or her work with metaphysical healing, visit her website at http://www.esthermitchell.com
Can you tell us a little about your book?
Certainly. DAUGHTER OF ASHES is the first book of a brand-new Fantasy series I’ll have here at Desert Breeze Publishing in June called Legends of Tirum. This is exciting for me, as I love Fantasy, and this series has been nearly 20 years in the making! The series contains a continuing storyline, as nine men and women who possess the magic (in the books, it’s known as Majik) that makes up the core of their world, and their quest to return a powerful Majin to life, and restore their world. DAUGHTER OF ASHES introduces two of the major characters for this series – Telyn Gwndal, known as the Phoenix, and Nacaris Onachar, who has a secret I’m not going to reveal at this point! *grins* DAUGHTER OF ASHES follows the first step of Telyn’s journey, as she discovers her roots, and the Majik she never knew she possessed.
What inspired you to write this book?
(laugh) That’s a question that’s a little difficult to answer. Some of it actually draws inspiration from my own life, and my own belief in magic. And some of it is drawn from a variety of sources. At the time I started writing it, I was addicted to a computer Role Playing Game called Might & Magic… And I was an avid gamer with paper & dice RPGs, as well. The first draft of DAUGHTER OF ASHES was a strictly Fantasy adventure story. But the story didn’t have a lot of real “guts” to it until much more recently, when I began to realize what was missing – the connection between the main characters. And thus was born the Romance, and suddenly, the story came to life!
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
(GRINS) Truth is, I honestly don't remember. I've always been a writer, I think. I know I drove my parents crazy, as a small child, drawing squiggly lines on the pages of *wince* books which I claimed were the stories I was writing. I did that until my parents had the brilliant idea to give me notebooks to fill, instead. I still have them. Illegible, full of squiggly lines that mean little to me, today, but when I look at them, I remember what it felt like, and that inspires me when I'm frustrated with some current writing problem or another.
How or why did you decide to write Romance?
Well, that's personal and very private, but I do believe in true love. While I don't believe it conquers all, and I don't believe in "Happily Ever After", I do believe in the "Happy As Long as I Can Be" mentality, and I do try to end my work on a positive note, where I can. I have a lot of faith in the power of love to create something bright and beautiful in even the darkest areas of life. Hence why I write fiction that's both dark/dangerous and with that grain of light/love/hope.
6. Where do you do most of your writing? Do you have a favorite spot or room?
I’ll write anywhere an idea comes to me, but I actually have my own office, now, where I do most of the work when I’m home. I also use my laptop, and I’m typically seen with either a notebook or whatever manuscript I’m currently editing, wherever I go. I often work on my books during my lunch hour at work, too.
What has been your greatest challenge?
Acceptance, I think. I don’t write mainstream Romance, and it’s been a battle to gain acceptance in the Romance community. Most of my work is darker, edgier stuff that can make some people uncomfortable, and it’s reality-based in ways that many Romance authors tend to avoid – I don’t shy away from the dirty details of real life. That’s made it tough; but I’m determined that it’s not impossible.
How many hours a week do you spend writing?
(laughs) Not as many as I’d like, anymore. I do have a regular job, as well, and at current it tends to cause writing time conflicts. But I still try to get at least 3 hours every day to write.
What do you do when writes block hits you?
I don’t often get writer’s block, but when I do, it depends on how and why the block’s hit. First thing I do is look over what I’ve written, and try to see if I’ve just written myself into a corner. If I have, I rewrite the section, to open up a way out. Sometimes, removing the block has been as simple as rewriting a scene from another Point of View. If the block’s more serious than that, I’ll set the book aside for a couple of hours and do something totally unrelated to writing; usually after a couple of hours away, the ideas start pouring in. If not, I put the book aside for a few days, and work on other projects (I usually have more than one book going at a time).
Are you currently writing anything new?
(Laughs) Always! I’m currently also working on an anthology story for Desert Breeze Publishing, as well as the next book in The Legends of Tirum. I also have series with other publishers I’m working on. Anyone wanting to see more of my series should check out my website at www.esthermitchell.com