I got nominated by the lovely Ashley Carlson to continue on with the Character Blog Tour. It's an honor to be nominated and I will carry the torch into writing awesomeness!
For the last four years I have been writing, re-writing, throwing away and starting over, and writing again. I had this idea that just popped in my head one night of a woman struggling to find her identity and in the chaos of her world she overcomes the impossible. Vague I know...but at the time it was mainly a really bad ass fight scene that I couldn't get out of my brain. (Which is at the very end of book one ;) In my mind she had finally reached her point of no return, she had to fight to stand for what she believed in, and OH MY LORD DOES SHE! (Can't spoil my own book now though can I!?) After three years of pulling together the idea and plot, and one year of writing until my fingers bled (thank you Laura and Melaina! That lunch that one day was totally much needed BTW) and then several more months of edits, reading, re-reading, re-writing, and CHANGING A CHARACTERS NAME!!! I finally had a novel. A polished beautiful 140,000ish word novel. Holy crap guys, I'm A WRITER! (there are a lot of shouty caps in this post, but I'm not going to apologize for my enthusiasm).
Now...time to get to the point. The Character Blog Tour...let's get this baby rolling....(and I have a secret surprise at the end, but first the Character Blog!)
The main character of my novel is Camille Scipio, a seemingly average 17 year old girl that harbors a dangerous past, most of which she can’t remember. Suffering from acute amnesia, she wakes in a strange village filled with questions about her identity, where she came from, and most of all why she seems to be so superior over the average human. She can run a mile in under three minutes, hunt like a true predator, and handle a sword like it’s an extension of her body. Everything crashes down on her revealing broken memories of her past threatening to reveal the monster she harbors inside. The idea for Camille came from several different aspects, but I owe a lot of my inspiration to Muse. The first scene popped into my head after listening to Knights of Cydonia one night before I was going to bed. The filled out version of the story really took root after listening to their albums…on repeat….for several months. The next spark of inspiration came after I re-watched the first Bourne Identity movie. I loved the idea of massive struggle in searching for an identity. I think about my own identity a lot, who I am and what I want to be, and using the plot point of not knowing your past is a fun way to pick through the memories you choose to highlight to fully form a character from the start of the story to the climax. I think this allows the readers a chance to learn and grow with the lead character because they are finding out more just as Camille does.
The setting of this story is its own world similar to Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones. Though there is horseback traveling, town like atmosphere’s and basic 1700 village structure; there is also technology, electricity, travel by dirigible, and high tech weaponry. The main geography of Aspera (the Kingdom of where Camille lives) is laid out in a circle separated into nine Colonies. Each Colony has its own social structure, and I would very much place it in a guide line of Game of Thrones. Simple, yet very technologically minded within the constructs of what the world has to offer.
Camille mainly struggles with the fear of her unknown past and not knowing who or what she is. She knows she committed a horrible crime and endures jarring flashes of past memories but she can’t understand what they mean or what to do about them. She is stubborn out of embarrassment and grows increasingly confused by a growing power within her that seems to take over her mental state when her emotional range bursts into heightened territory. It doesn't help that on top of struggling with identity crisis, she is also trying to save her people from oppression from the overbearing cruelty of High King LeMarc, and figure out the maze of emotions attacking her from every angle when in the presence of her love interest. Most of what I want to highlight about Camille is that in a lot of ways, she is like every one of us, struggling to find who we are in the present chaos of our day to day lives.
Camille’s main external conflict is struggling to find her place in a world that doesn’t really have a place for her. She is a love interest, a friend, a daughter, a savior, a warrior, and a born killer. Throughout the novel she arcs toward understanding of who and what she is only to have it obliterated by circumstantial tragedies. Camille’s biggest internal conflict to overcome is learning control of herself, her emotions, and knowing what she is capable of.
The first novel is called: The Praetorians. It’s not available yet as I am still working through the editing process, but I am hoping to get this one published soon. I am giving myself until the end of the year to find an agent, and if I can’t by then I am going to go about the process of self-publishing. So if you know of anyone looking for a book like mine to promote, send them my way! I want to say this will end up being a trilogy, I definitely have enough in my mind to make the story last a good long while. So far there is book 1, the outline of book two, and the synopsis of a book 3. We will see where I go after that. There is so much more to come after Book 1!
And that's my Character Blog Tour. Now to hand off to the next round of writers I have two extremely amazing people to nominate. Matthew Tomlinson who wrote probably one of my favorite books I've read this year; Jack and Jill a Zombie Love Story which is AVAILABLE to purchase!
SECRET AWESOME AMAZING NEWS....I found an amazing artist to do my cover art! Kaegan Cusenbary, who I've known for almost five years (can you believe it Kaegan?!) and is an amazing traditional artist has agreed to work on my cover art. Since I have some time before I get into the whole publishing affair I thought now would be a good time to start thinking of a look for the novel. Kaegan's style and form couldn't be more perfect for what I am aiming for. I want realism with a overlay of gritty intensity. Check out her work here!