Wednesday, December 23, 2020
Blessings of the Yuletide to you and yours. Whatever winter holiday you celebrate, whether it has already passed or it is yet to come, I wish you peace, health, and happiness.
In my latest post for The Delta Pearl, I promise not to “kill off” any important characters. Dead of Winter is, as D. Wallace Peach put it, darker and more dangerous. It is high fantasy, written before my style evolved to all out whimsy. There are two characters who don’t make it to the conclusion of the 840 or so pages of the full manuscript. Although I’ll admit they are not what I call “tier one” characters.
The winter solstice arrived on December 21st, so it’s already winter, but still… Winter is coming! I will publish the first novelette of Dead of Winter in early January. With that in mind I’ve invited my young heroine to Teagan’s Books for a character interview.
Dead of Winter — Emlyn Eriu
Teagan: Hi, Emlyn. Thanks for visiting here at Christmastime. That looks like Santa’s sleigh flying overhead. Do they have Santa Clause in your homeland?
Emlyn: Imagine that! A flying sleigh… and that looks like some kind of deer pulling it… No. We have nothing like that in the Flowing Lands. Thank you for giving me this lovely red outfit for today. I’ve always dreamed of wearing a beautiful color. (A mischievous smile comes to her lips.) Elder Pwyll would have a spasm if he saw this skirt and hat!
Teagan: I gather they are very strict. What is life like for twelve-year-old girls like you? Do you spend the day in school?
Emlyn: School? No. Some boys can get an education, but the Brethren of Un’Naf don’t like that. It wasn’t always like that. But the Brethren have been making the rules for as long as I can remember. They’d rather people were only taught about religion. I mean, their religion. For girls, it’s only proper for us to learn things to do with keeping house and raising children.
Teagan: Don’t you have a teacher though? A mentor? (She nods, brightening.)
Emlyn: Yes, but please don’t tell. I think the elders have forgotten. (She whispers.) My father paid a big tithe so they would let me get lessons in account keeping, so I could help him with his orchard. It’s too much for one man. But I’m afraid that if anyone mentioned it, they would put a stop to it. Or worse, they might hurt Osabide, my teacher.
Teagan: You have reason to fear them for yourself too.
Emlyn: (She nods and looks down at her hands.) The people in this religion don’t like much of anything, including women, and they especially don’t like my particular “gift.” Though I have to wonder if it isn’t more of a curse than a gift. I see spirits. It’s hard to hide the fact that I see and hear them, because they look so real to me.
Teagan: I promise you are always safe here, in my sanctuary, Emlyn. If ever you need a place to hide, you can come here. Thank you for meeting my readers. I think it’s time for your lesson with Osabide. Do take care.
Thank you, everyone, for spending part of this holiday week here with me.
This is a work of fiction. Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.
Copyright ©2020 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene
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