Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Hello, everyone. Happy hump day.
My serial approach in publishing Dead of Winter in novelette-sized monthly installments is rather unusual. It will take months for some story elements to be fully revealed. I realize it’s hard to be patient. So, I thought it might be fun to have a sort of question & answer party.
Dead of Winter has a variety of characters. Some are intriguing in good ways, while others are, well… ambiguous. I invited half a dozen bloggers who volunteered to help with the initial book launch to ask questions about the characters. Today, I’m sharing some answers. There might be a second edition of this party.
(Tajín would dress appropriately to his surroundings, but this man’s profile is how I imagine him. Bandihar would have settings similar to this one.)
Robbie: What is Tajín’s background and how did he come to be allocated to protecting Zasha?
Dan: I would like to know more about Tajín. How did he end up in the protector role? Was it something he wanted to do or was he groomed for the position. Is he protecting others?
Teagan: Dan and Robbie, thanks for reminding me. When I wrote the novel, ten years ago, I intended to devote a novella to the backstory of Zasha and Tajín. Then came the fiasco of Game of Thrones using “Winter is coming!” in their promos… When I put Dead of Winter on the shelf, I forgot all about the supplemental novella.
Tajín’s homeland of Bandahar is one of the most fully developed locations of the many countries created in Dead of Winter, and he is part of the royal house. Later in the journeys, I tell more about his background and status. Although I didn’t let the story go far into it. Also, in the way of classic “high” fantasy, I’ve only hinted at the personal relationship between the two characters. That would be a full adventure in itself.
Robbie Cheadle at Roberta Writes Journey 1 review
Olga: Afon, Emlyn’s father, seems to have no understanding or acceptance of Emlyn’s “peculiarities” (through fear, or perhaps because things have changed a lot, or for other reasons). I wondered at his ambiguous feelings for his daughter. He never seems to have much good to say about her and tries to betray her, but he allows her to study.
Teagan: Olga, I’m glad you asked about Emlyn’s father. Afon Faxon and his older daughter Afanen do seem to only care about Emlyn for what they can get from her. (Also, I’ve known people to make that comment about abusive families.) Osabide will eventually have a conversation with Emlyn about that.
I needed to show Afon’s ambiguity and his indifference to his youngest daughter to develop the characters. That also helps to establish the impact of the oppressive religion on the people of the Flowing Lands. Afon is complicated. We don’t know if he’s going to help or do harm.
He feels a duty to his family, and supports them to the best of his ability. Is he simply too weak to stand against the local religion? Or has he bought into the the words of people (including his older daughter Afanen) who say Emlyn is unbalanced? If he was wrong to believe them, then how many other decisions and beliefs would he have to question about himself? Also, how different would Afon’s relationship with Emlyn have been if the religion had not taken power? Emlyn might ask herself those questions for the rest of her life.
Olga Núñez Miret at Author Translator Olga Journey 1 review
Olga Núñez Miret at Author Translator Olga Journey 2 review
Pat: Is Emlyn’s sister just insensitive or does she really wish her harm? Did her mother really die or just disappear?
Teagan: Good question, Pat. My answer is related to the answer I gave Olga about the father. Afanen, Emlyn’s older sister, mentions that she doesn’t want their father to “arrange an attachment” (marriage) for Emlyn, because Emlyn does so many of the household chores.
I’ll leave it to those who are qualified to make a diagnosis, but Afanen shows signs of being a narcissist. She has an excessive need for admiration, and disregard for others’ feelings. If something happened to Emlyn, would Afanen care about her little sister, beyond how she benefited from having her there?
Oh, and yes — In the Dead of Winter timeline, Emlyn’s mother dies years before the story begins.
Pat Alderman at e-Quips — Journey 1 review
Pat Alderman at e-Quips — Journey 2 review
I resisted the urge to be coy with my answers, even if they feel incomplete. There are details relevant to all the questions, which will revealed as Dead of Winter progresses. If you have not started the serial, then I hope this post causes you to want to get up and “stretch your legs” and join us on the journeys.
Dead of Winter, Journeys 1 & 2 by Teagan R. Geneviene
The monthly “Journeys” of Dead of Winter have only just begun. The first two installments are available — and the third will be here in a couple of weeks.
Journey 2, Penllyn
Journey 1, Forlorn Peak
By the way, here’s another of my Designed & Ready Book Covers. Text can be changed for promotional images rather than book covers too. Here’s my portfolio.
Wishing you an easy coast down the other side of this midweek hump. Hugs on the wing!
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 © 2021 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene
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