Welcome everyone! I'd like to bring you another scrumptious fantasy story today! Please welcome S.A. Bolich!
by S.A. BolichPublisher: Sky Warrior Books
S.A. is here today to talk about the inspiration behind Firedancer. Please give her a warm welcome!
I love reading and writing fantasy because the possibilities really are endless. There is no limit to the imagination, and the people who read fantasy seem to have an endless acceptance for new branches of the genre. We all have our favorites, from swords and sorcery to urban fantasy, but there’s always room for something new.
That something new is usually borne of some writer’s personal passion for...something, be it funky machines in Victorian settings (steampunk) to a determination to prove that there are no heroes or villains in the world, only people (George R. R. Martin). In my case, I’m an outdoor sort of girl. I grew up on a working farm; I’ve had horses all my life; and I currently live on and maintain 20 acres, with two horses, a huge dog, and four cats. Mother Nature, with all of her beauty and possibility, snarky indifference to your wishes and outright discomfort, lives on nearly every page I write.
I suppose, therefore, it was natural I would write a series like the Masters of the Elements, where Earth Mother’s troublesome children—Fire, Wind, and Water—run rampant, driving all the action. Just last night I sat out on my deck and watched 360° of thunderstorms raging around my house—until the hail and rain started dumping overhead! Nature is awesome, and fills my eyes, ears, nose, and caresses my skin daily. It is hard for me to imagine that the elements would NOT be alive, going about their business, largely ignoring us puny mortals.
I don’t actually remember where the idea for Firedancer came from, though I suspect, looking back, that the first line “This fire was malicious,” may have popped into my head directly after I had to beat out a small grass fire with a towel, the only weapon to hand (I had just washed my hair and wandered outside). With the wind blowing and skipping it ahead of me, it did seem malicious, and frightful, and for a few horrid minutes I pictured my house and the woods and all going up. But it didn’t. And somehow Jetta was born, my heroine who dances a deadly dance with Old Man Fire whenever it tries to poke its head up to destroy her world. Fire dances (and crackles and spits and roars), so why wouldn’t a dance be the magical element that would contain it, movement for movement?
When my publisher asked me to extend this standalone novel out into a series, I was both scared and exhilarated (often the same thing!). It meant I got to explore the other elements from the inside, and so Windrider was born, and I got to spend a lot of time just listening to the voices of the wind blowing around my house. There are so many! I had never guessed that Windriders sing to her...but they do.
And now, pardon me, but I need to go down to the lake and dabble my toes in the water and listen to the quiet lap and chuckle and imagine how Water is going to affect my characters in Seaborn. I looove being a writer!
What inspires you? What new genre would you invent?
Her first novel, Firedancer, Book 1 of the Masters of the Elements series, was released in September 2011 by Sky Warrior Books, with Book 2, Windrider, appearing in May 2012. Her short fiction has appeared in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, On Spec, Damnation Books, and many other print magazines and ezines, as well as the steampunk anthology Gears and Levers 1, the military SF anthology Defending the Future IV: No Man’s Land, and the wolf-themed fantasy collection, Wolfsongs 2. Currently she is working on Seaborn, Book 3 of Masters of the Elements.
Get in touch with her here: Website | Blog | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter as: @sabolichwrites