Hello, and welcome to my first-ever post about my completed, debut novel: Sister to the Throne
*edit, this one gigantic book has now been turned into a trilogy. The first book of which is titled 'Her Rising Shadow'.
Until now, I have kept quiet about my novel writing process. Being the anxiety-ridden hermit crab that I am, I was fearful someone might try to steal some of my ideas (ha-ha). Now that I’ve written the 260,500-word novel—re-written it—and edited it tenfold, the thought of someone going through as much effort as I have to bring this great story to fruition, simply makes me want to congratulate them. So here I am now, sharing with the world my freshly-born babe; swaddled tight after more than four years of being carried within my writer’s-womb: an adult fantasy and the first of a series—SISTER TO THE THRONE.
Title: Sister to the Throne
Status: Completed; Currently querying agents and mailing to publishers
Genre: Adult Fantasy
Pitch: A feral Magic must forsake her enchanted forest home—and her innocence—when she is elevated into a dangerous royal court among her enemies.
Sirilda lives with her sister and mother in a private stretch of forest. There, they have everything they could ever need: a cozy cottage home where they brew potions and cook supper; a cold, clear stream for collecting water and bathing; a beautiful clearing that allows them to dance through tall grasses and collect herbs; and an enchanted boundary separating them from the outside world—from the non-Magical humans (Pures, they’re called) who seek to destroy all Magic-kind, such as Sirilda and her family, should ever they be discovered.
However, Sirilda and her sister, Lyrinda, have begun to wonder if their mother is telling them all there is to know. Is their Magic blood the true reason for their isolation? Sirilda suspects there is more her mother is keeping secret; she senses something deeper about her existence, for there is something powerful beckoning to her from the faraway castle; the castle of their Pure enemy.
Their peaceful forest life is upheaved the day Lyrinda goes missing, forcing Sirilda to forsake Haven in the pursuit of finding her. As Sirilda immerses herself in the cold, ambitious world of the Pures—and ultimately the very court of the Pure King—she discovers there is indeed much her mother has been keeping from her. But not even her mother was aware of the dark destiny that has been awaiting Sirilda for more than a thousand years.
Comparisons: While I hate comparing my novel to another, I think the deeply personal drama of Philippa Gregory's The Other Boleyn Girl meeting the fantastical horrors of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire is the closest I can get. Of course, there was much that inspired me, such as Peter S. Beagle's The Last Unicorn, video games such as The Legend of Zelda and even some anime. I plan to delve more into my love of Japanese folklore in the sequel (which I am working on, currently).
Why I Wrote Sister to the Throne:
One of my favorite quotes on writing explains it perfectly:
“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”
I am one picky reader. Rarely have I found a book containing all the elements I am hungry for. I love deeply flawed characters in beautiful settings; a delicious-dark, often Gothic, mood; shocking horrors that take the reader by surprise (character deaths, high stakes); an exciting romance that doesn’t dominate the plot, but advances it; a main character who is crushed to their lowest point; mysteries and suspense that have the reader staying up all night, unable to set down the book; a story that the reader's mind will wander to ten years after reading it, and still try to uncover all its secret meanings; and as the cherry on top, I love a touch of the supernatural.
So I dumped all those ingredients into my own book and made a towering sundae of them. Drizzled generously on top is the blood, milk, and honey of my own human experience.
I began brainstorming the story of Sister to the Throne when I was in High School. It wasn’t until I moved to the forest (at the age of 25) that I had the mental capacity to write it all out. In fact, that is one of the main reasons my husband and I decided to live off-the-grid in the forest: so I can focus on my novel-writing, and find inspiration in my surroundings. With great pleasure, I delivered every last scent and sensation of our forest life into Sirilda’s Haven.
Finishing Sister to the Throne truly does seem like I have just given birth, and while it feels only natural to keep my child close to my breast, I know it’s time to unravel the swaddle and set her down in the spotlight. I have given her everything of mine: my trauma, my laughter, my most intimate dreams. Inviting you to look upon her is an invitation to look inside me.
Now Sister to the Throne just needs to find her ideal publisher. If you are an agent or publisher reading this, HELLO! Should you be interested in discussing my manuscript, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org
I know with certainty that Sister to the Throne will be satisfying to many…and disturbing to even more. I’m eager for those who think they know me as a soft-spoken, somewhat fragile girl, to be appalled by the dark fantasy world beneath my surface. And there are many more worlds than that, waiting to be written into this one we all share.
I appreciate you all reading this, and I CANNOT WAIT for you all to read my baby…I mean my book. Stay tuned for updates on this journey to publication, and feel free to send all the encouraging vibes you can ; )