Today I’m pleased to welcome author Vanna Smythe, discussing her latest book, Protector.
Vanna Smythe is the author of Protector, the first book in the Anniversary of the Veil fantasy series. She has been writing creatively since her early teens, though one could say her creative writing efforts started long before that. While still in kindergarten, she once tore up a library book to make alphabet soup, and has been fascinated with what words can do, the pictures and worlds they can create, ever since. Book two of the Anniversary of the Veil series, Decision Maker, is due out in Autumn, 2012.
You can find her here:
1. Tell a little about yourself, what you do when you’re not writing, what are your aspirations for the future?
Hi, first of all, thank you for having me on your blog. When I am not writing fiction, I work as a freelance journalist and copywriter. So, I do a lot of writing. My main aspiration is to one day make enough money from my fiction writing to focus 100% of my time on writing novels. That has been my dream since childhood and I am in the process of making it a reality.
2. When and why did you start writing?
I always enjoyed making up stories, but I started to write more seriously in High School. To be completely honest, I hardly remember a time when I did not want to be a writer in some capacity or other. I joined a “Journalism Writing” afterschool class in the 4th grade, that’s how sure I was that some form of a career in writing was in my future. At this point, I only wish I had started to pursue novel writing more seriously earlier. If I had, I would maybe have more than one book out there now.
3. If you could only read one book over and over again for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
Now this is a very tough question. I would have to say The Lord of the Rings, but only because it is the only fantasy book I have read more than once. There are many, many others that I love.
4. Give us some back story about Protector, where and when did you write it?
I started writing Protector during NaNo 2009. I finished the first draft in one month, but then it took me more than two years to finally get it ready for publication. Revision is certainly not my strong point.
5. What inspired your story?
The main story in Protector, that of the pull of true love, is inspired by the new-age belief in Twin Souls, or Twin Flames. According to this belief, each person has a soul mate who is basically the other part of themselves, and sometimes they find each other and come together in their lifetime. It is believed that this happens when the energy their joining creates is needed to better the world in some way.
In the world I created in Protector, such “joinings” are controlled and guided, and not everything is happily ever after for the twins involved. This happens because the joinings are not allowed to occur naturally. One of the main questions asked in the book is whether true, unconditional love is stronger than everything else.
6. What was your favorite part of Protector to write?
I enjoyed all of it, but what I enjoyed the most was the final, final revision. This was basically the stage when the real story (and the way it was meant to be told) was truly born. This process involved me getting completely immersed in the story and the world, and it was an amazing experience.
7. Are you working on any other projects at the moment?
I’m starting to write part two of the Anniversary of the Veil series, called Decision Maker. It will conclude the story I started in Protector.
8. Are you a Pantser or Plotter? Why?
I’m definitely a Pantser. I find it much easier to just write, and do all the necessary plotting while I do so. I usually come up with a general premise for a story, and a general direction of how I want it to unfold, and then I just write. My main problem is revision, but I am getting better and better at it.
9. Do you have any tricks to your trade, bottomless coffee, a magic pen, a special muse?
I do go through a ritual of buying just the right pens, just the right index cards and just the right something else, before I start to write. It is a sort of mental preparation for me, the way some people must first clean their house, or do all their chores. Though once I actually start to write for real, all those things no longer matter so much.
Thank you Vanna Smythe for stopping by. Please feel free to leave a comment for the author and don’t forget to check out Protector.
Kiyarran just wanted to become a Protector of the Realm, a member of an elite order of fighters. Strange and powerful magical abilities awaken inside him once his wish comes true. The Priesthood that secretly controls the realm see his skill as a threat, and Kiyarran begins to learn that little about life as a Protector is what he thought it would be. To top it off, Kiyarran is falling in love with Princess Issiyanna, his friend of many years.
Issiyanna faces and arranged marriage, but she has been dreaming of another man, her one true love. Now her long gone mother is calling to her, promising she will return and take Issiyanna to meet the man from her dreams.
The world is split in half by a barrier called the Veil. A terrible sacrifice was made to put it in place and now, as the 1000th Anniversary of the Veil draws near, a second sacrifice is called for to keep it in place.
Both Kiyarran and Issiyanna are needed for the Anniversary. Even though they only just learned of the Veil and neither know the role they must play …