About the Story
|format: novel |
length: 160,000 words
(composed of 3 parts: Sun-Walking | Wind-Running | Sky-Dancing)
when: nov. 2010-june 2013
best part of the process: AWESOME FEMINIST HEROINE YAY!!
worst part of the process: world-building sucks
Check out the Sun-Walking tag on my blog for more updates on this project.
The Sun-Walker and his illegitimate apprentice narrowly escape with their lives from Lucienne's six months of training. They flee the city as exiles in the company of Lucienne's loyal "dragon," the Sun-Creature, Solveig. Spending eight months of asylum in the drastically different world of Agaar, Lucienne discovers that worlds and customs exist that are entirely unlike the ways of her homeland. Her journey into reconciliation with Helios is as important as the impact she has on the ways of her people.
With major feminist undertones, this vivid, action-packed fantasy explores what it takes to break out of the expectations of society and what is learned and lost along the way.
CommentaryThis is the longest novel I have ever completed. I also feel more strongly about this story than any I have written really since "Redefining Evil." I believe this is a marketable story which I would either pitch as one length novel (preferably) or else as three short novels making up a trilogy. I really believe in Lucienne as a character and I learned a lot about her as I followed her journey out of and ultimately back into Helios. My own travels were really important in digging into her travels out of Helios. My original goal for the story was to tell a story about a girl that finds her "something" rather than her "someone" and I truly believe I accomplished that goal.
I pushed myself into uncharted territory by having a female lead in a lengthy story, and working with her until I actually respected her (female characters are tough for me). I also set down my original efforts to include any recurring characters and so literally every character in here was created for the story rather than being lifted from somewhere else. And finally, I backed away from that attitude of disdain Lucienne had for Helios during my original drafts because I realized myself that it's not maturation to loathe someone's lifestyle just because it isn't the same as yours.
This is a story I would want to read if I picked it up at a bookstore, and I plan on going through it for some thorough revisions (the first part, "Sun-Walking," still shows some evidence that I didn't know where I was going with it in the beginning) and then trying to find a home for it. Given that I have spent 3 years on this project, I am willing to continue patiently pruning and preening it for pitching to publishers. That is an exciting prospect.