I’ll jump right in:
What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?
I have had the basic idea of a spy novel floating around in the back of my head for a while! When I sat down to come up with ideas for Nanowrimo, I looked through the notes in my phone (where I often jot down obscure plot bunnies) and rediscovered a brain wave about a contemporary and fantasy mashup from 2015. I simply combined that with the spy idea, and now I have a mess of an idea in my head!
Describe what your novel is about!
It’s about an unmotivated girl with self esteem issues, a small boy with too much motivation, and a dysfunctional family with many problems that they don’t want to fix. There are dragons, houses that fall down, and an unorganised spy agency. All in all, it’s a story about looking for your life purpose – only to discover that it changes all the damn time.
What is your book’s aesthetic?
I’m still working on the pinterest board, but here’s what I’ve got at the moment:
It’s sort of black-and-white, and yet maybe quite impacting when you look closer?? Also do I overthink everything?? The answer is yes.
Introduce us to each of your characters!
There’s Lillian! She’s a Hufflepuff with a love for dancing and smiling at strangers, and she has a hatred for donkeys and her thin lips. She wants to save the world, but doesn’t know how. She longs for a purpose.
There’s Caster! He’s a Slytherin with lots of motivation to do stuff, but rather lacking in the means to carry out his plans. He loves chocolate and dragons, and has a bad habit of accidentally hating people. His life is outside of his control.
There’s The-Person-Without-A-Name! He’s the absentminded head of the spy agency, and he’s very good at his job. He loves folk music and getting tattoos. He doesn’t have a name because I can’t find a decent name for him okay.
There’s the family! The father is firm and a little kind, but very distant. The mother is outwardly sweet, has undiagnosed anxiety, and is very manipulative. The brother is very extroverted and a little bit compulsive.
(I’m honestly considering calling the mother “The Mother” the whole book so I don’t have to find a name for her, help)
How do you prepare to write?
There’s always a lot of planning involved! I like to have a very good idea of where my story is going before I start writing. I also like to do a good amount of world building – I want to have a good idea of the place and time in my head before I start writing.
What are you most looking forward to about this novel?
This book is set in a land called “Samaa”, which is a place I came up with my sister long ago when I was a small child. I haven’t written a full story set in it yet, and I’m really looking forward to developing the place and exploring the culture! I want to add in several things which I hadn’t come up with before about the land of Samaa, and I’m super excited to do so!
List 3 things about your novel’s setting.
- It’s outwardly cheerful, inwardly broken.
- There are tall wooden houses and winding streets with broken cobblestones.
What’s your character’s goal, and who/what stands in the way?
Lillian has two main goals throughout the story. Her internal goal is to find a life purpose. In the way stand her family, her own insecurities, and peer pressure to just live-and-let-live. Her external goal is help Caster, which is halted by the slave trade, donkeys, and Caster himself!
How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?
By the end, Lillian has realised what purposes are, and how to save Caster – from himself. She has (subconsciously) stopped listening to her friends and family as much, and realises that finding your purpose is a lifetime thing.
What are your book’s themes? How do you want your readers to feel when the story is over?
The themes include, but are not limited to: purposes, growing up, abuse and neglect, freedom, and hufflepuff/slytherin friendship (if that’s a theme!).
I’m not planning to have any readers of this story, but if anyone actually reads it, I’d love them to know the fact that motivation is a finicky thing.
Thanks so much for Cait and Sky for creating this blogging meme! It was so much fun to do, and actually really helped me to get my scattered thoughts in order. I’m really pumped for Nanowrimo now!
Are you taking part in Nanowrimo?