Get a glimpse into the world of author Jamie Marchant's Kronicles of Korthlundia today and don't forget to enter the giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon/BN GC fromt he author. The tour is sponsosered by Goddess Fish Promotions and click HERE to find all the tour stops.
A Q&A with the Jamie Marchant
Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let's jump right in. When did you begin writing and why?
I began writing basically as young as I could write. I wrote stories about the man from Mars for my older sister when I was as young as six. I wrote because the stories within me had to come out. Writing has always seemed the most nature thing to do. To ask I feel about writing is like asking how I feel about breathing. I need to write to live, at least to live a happy life.
Do you have a favorite genre? Is it the same genre you prefer to write?
Yes, my favorite genre is fantasy, and so far all of my writing falls within this genre. My reading is more diverse than my writing, but fantasy is still my favorite. To me, fantasy gives the best mix of magical escape and deep contemplation of what it means to be human.
Do certain themes and ideas tend to capture your writer’s imagination and fascinate you?
One of the most important ideas that I often include in my writing is the concept of forgiveness, both of ourselves and of others. Everyone makes mistakes. When we do, yes, it’s important to do what we can to make things right, but to move on and become a better person, we need to forgive ourselves for our weaknesses. Equally important is to forgive others, even if they don’t deserve it. Holding on to anger and resentment damages our own soul and casts a shadow of darkness over our happiness. This idea comes up repeatedly in my work. Getting it there without becoming didactic is sometimes a difficult task.
How do you balance long-term thinking vs. being nimble in today's market?
Personally, I don’t worry about today’s market. I write the stories that are inside my soul and trust that they will find readers. If I tried to write to sell, what I write would be artificial. It doesn’t come from within me, so it is far from my best work. Readers can tell when a writer’s soul is in their work and when it isn’t. I also write first for myself, because writing fills me and makes me happy. It wouldn’t if I were forcing myself to write for the market. Don’t get me wrong. I want my novels to sell. I want people to read them, but I believe the best way to achieve that is to be true to myself.
How do you find readers in today's market?
This is the eternal question. Promoting my work is certainly not my favorite part of being an author. The most effective tool I’ve found is twitter. Political twitter can be a toxic place, but if you stay away from politics and immerse yourself with the writers and readers on twitter, you find a supportive, friendly environment, and at least some of the people I interact with become readers. But I’m always searching for better ways to promote.
Do you come up with the hook first, or do you create characters first and then dig through until you find a hook?
All my work starts first with the characters. For me to enjoy a book, I have to care about the characters in the story. If I don’t care about them, I don’t care what happens to them. You people your world with interesting people, and they will reveal your hook.
How do you create your characters?
In a way this is like asking how did I raise my son to be the kind of man he is. Yes, I had a role in teaching and guiding him into adulthood, but he came to me with a lot of his essential qualities already in place, and there was little I could do to change them. My characters are often like that. I don’t know if this is a result of having observed people for fifty years or from having read thousands of books, but I don’t really create my characters. They come to me.
What's on the top of your TBR pile right now?
Right now I’m reading The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter by Theodora Goss. The novel includes the monstrously created women from 19th century fiction, such as Rappicinni’s daughter and the female monster created by Dr. Frankenstein, and unites them with Sherlock Holmes. It is a delightful tale that I highly recommend.
Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story?
The novels are set in my imaginary world of Korthlundia. It’s more accurate to state that the atmosphere/characters influenced the development of the world than the other way around. In the first book in the series, The Goddess’s Choice, I retell my favorite fairytale from childhood, “The Princess and the Glass Hill.” The tale involves strange occurrences such as magical horses riding up the side of a sheer glass hill, so I needed to create a world where such things could make logical sense. My world grew out of the needs of the story, and then the world influenced the future books in the series.
Tell me a little about the characters in The Kronicles of Korthlundia.
The fairytale the series is based on focuses on a Cinderella-like peasant boy who wins the right to marry the princess of the land through the aid of magical horses. In creating Robrek, I need a character who would have reason to be hated by the community but would draw magical beings to him. Because of his mixed blood (a necessary condition for magical ability in my world), he is a powerful sorcerer, but his magic combined with his mixed heritage makes him an outcast. The local priest believes him to be demon cursed and wants to burn him at the stake.
In the original tale, the princess has no personality and isn’t even named. She is nothing more than a prize to be handed off to the victorious male. In rewriting the tale, one of the most important things to me was to change this. Samantha, the crown princess of Korthlundia, is an intelligent, strong, and powerful woman. She is as frequently the rescuer as the rescued. She is Robrek’s equal, and at times, his superior.
If you had to write your memoir in five words, what would you write?
I don’t think anyone would want to read a memoir of my life, but try these:
Writer, Lover, Teacher, and Mother.
How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae?
All the time, I’m afraid. The stories live in my head until I can get them out on the page.
What do readers have to look forward to in the future from you?
I’m presently working on the fourth novel in The Kronicles of Korthlundia, which I believe will complete the series. It doesn’t have a title yet, but I call it the dragon book. I wonder what kind of creature it may introduce into my world. I also have ideas for at least two other side novels involving characters from the series. Eventually, I also want to get back to the other series I started with The Bull Riding Witch and finish that story.
The Kronicles of Korthlundia
by Jamie Marchant
GENRE: Epic Fantasy
“Magic, love, hate, torture, heroes, and a story that will never stop blowing your mind!” Cheree~For Love of Books
The three volumes of The Kronicles of Korthlundia plus The Ghost in Exile: A Korthlundian Kronicle brought together for one low price. In addition to the novels, the collection features several bonus short stories, previously available only to members of my readers’ club.
The Goddess’s Choice--In a world where the corrupt church hides the truth about magic, the fate of the joined kingdom falls on the shoulders of two young people from opposite ends of the social hierarchy.
Crown Princess Samantha’s life begins to fall apart when she starts seeing strange colors around her potential suitors. She fears that she’s going insane--or worse that she’s defying the Goddess’s will. Robrek is a lowly farm boy with incredible magical powers. He has been biding his time waiting to get revenge on those who call him a demon.
Thrown together by chance, they must overcome their differences to fight their common enemy Duke Argblutal, who, with dark magic, is slowly poisoning the king’s mind and turning him against his own daughter. Time is running out for those chosen by the Goddess to prevent the power mad duke from usurping the throne and plunging the joined kingdoms into civil war.
The Soul Stone-- A match made by the goddess is threatened by an Ancient Evil.
As Samantha and Robrek prepare for their marriage and coronation, they are met with opposition on all sides. Not all believe that the peasant sorcerer is worthy to be king, and the young couple must perform delicate political maneuvers to prevent the joined kingdoms from breaking apart.
As the church splits over opposition to their union, an unseen force is poised to release an ancient evil that was last defeated a thousand years ago. When the Soul Stone is broken free of its bonds, all life in its path succumbs to its power. How much will the new royal couple have to sacrifice to free the joined kingdoms of its evil?
The Ghost in Exile—A special Kronicle outside of the series that tells the story of Darhour. The novel takes place at the same time as The Soul Stone. The Ghost is going to hell. Not even the goddess can forgive his sins: assassin, oath-breaker, traitor (an affair with the queen earned him that title). No one can ever learn the princess is his daughter. To keep this secret, he flees to the land that turned him from a simple stable groom into an infamous killer.
His mission now? To find evildoers and take them to hell with him. But when an impulsive act of heroism saddles him with a damsel who refuses to be distressed, her resilience forces him to question why he really ran from his daughter.
The Shattered Throne-- Queen Samantha’s spirit brightens as the festival of renewal approaches. The Ancient Evil that drained life from the land has been destroyed, and life is returning to the joined kingdoms. The birth of her heir gives her even more reason to celebrate. But a coup orchestrated by the unlikely alliance between a freedom-loving count and a fanatical church shatters both her plans and the ancient throne itself.
With her infant daughter missing and death and destruction spreading, Samantha finds herself faced with an impossible choice: save her daughter or her people. Already torn between a mother’s love and her duties as a queen, Samantha learns that an even greater danger threatens: the goddess herself is fading. What sacrifices will Samantha have to make to stop an evil god from taking Sulis’s place?
At bedtime, Alvabane sat at her dressing table brushing her long hair. It had once been a bright, rich red, but it had dulled with age and was now mostly grey with only a few strands of color to remind her of what once had been. It seemed a metaphor for her life—small flashes of color to remind her of her once bright purpose.
One of those flashes, Erick, set her nightly goblet of fortified wine next to her hand. She needed the strong alcohol to dull the pain of her joints so she could sleep. She turned to thank him, but the words died on her lips as she saw the reproach in his eyes. Alvabane turned back to her mirror. Tonight was the night of the new moon. She should have been preparing to perform the rites of the dark gods, not preparing for bed. “They have forgotten us,” Alvabane said. “The Soul Stone does not live.”
Erick made a mewing sound, reminding her what he’d sacrificed to serve her and the dark gods. She herself had cut his tongue from his mouth when he came to her as a ten-year-old child. He had surrendered it stoically.
“Do you think you have sacrificed more than I?” She turned to face him. “I performed the rites faithfully every new moon for decades. And for what, I ask you? The power of the Stone remains trapped behind the shield the demon Armunn created from his own soul. That shield can’t be destroyed. The Soul Stone won’t live again!
Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B082S5J8RR
Jamie Marchant will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
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AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Jamie began writing stories about the man from Mars when she was six, and she never remembers wanting to be anything other than a writer. Everyone told her she needed a back up plan, so she pursued a Ph.D. in American literature, which she received in 1998. She started teaching writing and literature at Auburn University. One day in the midst of writing a piece of literary criticism, she realized she’d put her true passion on the backburner and neglected her muse. The literary article went into the trash, and she began the book that was to become The Goddess’s Choice, which was published in April 2012. Her other novels include The Soul Stone, The Ghost in Exile, The Shattered Throne, and The Bull Riding Witch. In addition, she has published a novella, Demons in the Big Easy, and a collection of short stories, Blood Cursed and Other Tales of the Fantastic. Her short fiction has also appeared in the anthologies Urban Fantasy, Of Dragons & Magic: Tales of the Lost Worlds, and Waiting for a Kiss. She claims she writes about the fantastic . . . and the tortured soul. Her poor characters have hard lives. She lives in Auburn, Alabama, with her husband and five cats, which (or so she’s been told) officially makes her a cat lady. She still teaches writing and literature at Auburn University. She is the mother of a grown son.