Q&A with Author Kirsten Marion
The second addition to the fantasy series Lucy & Dee is coming soon, so we spoke with author Kirsten Marion about the series and writing.
What inspired you to write this book?
This book is the continuation of the story I started in Lucy & Dee; The Silk Road. I’d fallen in love with the characters and needed to find out what happened next on their journey to the Caves of Wonder, not only their actual trek across Sericea into Rephar but how they grew as individuals along the way.
What was the most rewarding and/or challenging thing about writing this book?
There were two things: seeing my characters grow and mature and the research I had to do. I learned so much about alchemy and the early development of things like compasses.
Developing a consistent magical system required an entirely different type of fascinating research. It is very easy to go down the rabbit hole of interesting ideas and not get any writing done at all!
Do you plan/plot out the story before you write?
I try, I really do. I usually have an idea where I’m headed. In the case of this book that destination was laid out at the end of the first book. But plots take mysterious twists and turns of their own and the story wanted to go its own way in many spots.
What character(s) surprised you the most writing this book?
I’d have to say Yidi. In the first book he is an entitled pain in the backside and there are times when Lucy feels the whole venture is going to unravel because of his obnoxious behaviour. In The Caves of Wonder, Yidi starts to really step up to the plate, taking his role as the legitimate leader very seriously and exploring what it means to be a good leader. He certainly doesn’t always get it right, but he’s making an honest effort.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
It energizes me. I have so many ideas swirling around in my head that it’s a relief to sit down and lay them out on paper. It’s quite easy for me to get into what’s called a state of flow and have time disappear while I’m immersed in the writing.
Do you believe in writer's block?
No.I think there’s always a work around. If I’m looking at a page and I’ve got nothing, I just tell myself to write twenty-five words. That’s it. Twenty-five lousy words. That’s usually enough of a kickstart to get the ideas flowing again.
I also use Ernest Hemingway’s technique of stopping writing before I’m finished, sometimes in the middle of a sentence so I know exactly where I’m going to start the next day.
How many hours a day do you write?
I don’t write by time but by word count. I target three hundred words/day and I keep a log so I stay on track.
Lucy & Dee: The Caves of Wonder
In the sequel to The Silk Road, Lucy and Dee are trapped in the magical world of Sericea with the young emperor Yidi and a sorceress queen who wants all three of them captured.
Hiding their true identities to protect both themselves and those who want to help them, the trio must make the hazardous trip across Sericea to the Caves of Wonder to find a fabled warrior who could help them. But along the way, developing talents and rumours of revolution test their resolve. Lucy’s magical abilities grow, Dee’s interest in alchemy poses new opportunities and Yidi’s budding awareness of his empire has him confronting uncomfortable truths as he learns to live among those he’s meant to rule.
New dangers lurk around every corner, and if Lucy, Dee, and Yidi can’t face them together, their lives and the very fate of Sericea will be in peril.