Thursday, April 7, 2011

Fantasy Author Leslie Soule Discusses Her Newest Book "Fallenwood"

Scribal Love Welcomes Leslie Soule!

Leslie is an author of fantasy.  Her newest work, Fallenwood, will be available soon from Decadent Publishing.

What is the name of your latest book?  And how did you come up with the title?
The title of my debut fantasy novel is Fallenwood. I came up with the title because I wanted to evoke a sense of a woodland realm that has fallen from its glorious past, into ruin.

What is this book about?  And what genre is this book in?

This book is about the journey of Ash Kensington, who runs away after the death of her stepfather and ends up getting swept up into a quest in a realm called Terra Illumina – a place the locals call “Fallenwood”. This book is a fantasy novel.

Who is/are the main characters?  And why did you choose them?

I have a lot of main characters. I’m a big fan of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, so I really wanted to write a team story. My “team” consists of a sorcerer named Will Everett, my main character – Ash Kensington, a prince named Edward, a cat named Greymalkin, and a court jester named Terces.

What is the coolest or best part about your book?  (Any Favorite scenes, the world-building etc…)

I really love my characters. I also like the inclusion of the black unicorn, a unicorn that’s overcome with bloodlust and runs people through with its horn.

Do you have a favorite character in the book?  If so, why?
My favorite character is a talking cat named Greymalkin. I took the name from Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” when the witches say “Come, Greymalkin…” It’s an old word that just basically means “gray cat”.
Is this book part of a series?  If so? What can we expect in future books? 
I’m planning to write a sequel, currently. Fallenwood deals with the theme of death and its meaning. The sequel to Fallenwood is going to deal with a different theme, but one that I feel is just as significant. Since the books are a reflection of things I’ve gone through in my own life, the sequel to Fallenwood will deal with what it means to “lose yourself” and what it takes to find your way again.
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I wouldn’t change a thing. I absolutely love the way it turned out.
Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned the importance of not head-hopping, and the importance of keeping a chapter in a single person’s POV. Originally, I had wanted to include a lot of information that the characters could not possibly know. Since then, I’ve worked keeping an eye out on POV when I write. 
Do you have a publisher?  And if so, why did you choose them? 

The publisher I’ve got for Fallenwood is Decadent Publishing and they’ve been absolutely great with helping me to get a “foot in the door” as a new writer and to get my name out there. They’ve put so much into editing and promotion and just everything. They’ve been absolutely fantastic.
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Definitely my critique partner Kimber An. She’s the best!!! Also, my stepfather Richard A. Anderson – whose novel The Temple of the Heart is also available from Decadent Publishing.
What books are you reading now? 
I’m currently about halfway through Oliver Twist.
What are the current writing projects that you are working on?
I just finished writing a short story about martial arts and being in love. It’s called “Love Kata” – a “kata” in martial arts is a series of movements that forms a kind of dance-like whole.
Do you write full time?  If not, do you hope to do so one day?
I would love to be able to write full-time someday. Currently I work full-time doing State work.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I’ve written for as long as I can remember. My teachers all through school gave us writing prompts and one day they made the mistake of telling us, “If you can’t think of something, make it up…” That’s where it began. I got in trouble once with my mother when I was in the second grade because the writing prompt was something like “What would you do if you were a teacher?” and I came up with some very inventive ways of disciplining the bad kids. My mom drove me down to the school and made me re-write it in front of the teacher.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
It’s a challenge for me to write scenes that are graphic in nature or involve blood or hurting my characters. For being a martial artist, I’m kind of a wimp when it comes to stuff like that, surprisingly.
Do you have any advice for other writers seeking to get published for the first time?

Yeah. Don’t give up! Have faith in your writing. It takes a long time to get published, so while you’re waiting to hear back from publishers, get started on writing your next story. And have fun with it. Write from your heart – even if it’s something everyone else thinks is absolutely crazy.

Leslie Thanks for Dropping by!

You can find Leslie on the web at: 

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