Seems I just can’t help myself. I love adding fantasy elements into historical novels. But the one thing I struggle with is knowing how far to go with it. For each scene I add, I ask myself, “Is it too much?”
I don’t have the answer and maybe there isn’t one. Maybe it’s just a matter of listening to your instincts, letting that gut feeling guide you when there is no definitive answer. What I have noticed, though, is with each book that Brit Darby writes, I inch further into world of fantasy.
Then there is also the B factor. Generally, when I send a first draft to my writing partner, she has little, or no, idea what is in store as she reads it for the first time. Her initial reactions are much like a reader’s, a sort of litmus test for the bizarre and fantastical notions I come up with.
It will be interesting to see what happens when B reads what I’m working on now. Of course, this is the book spawned from her earlier start in contemporary fiction we decided not to pursue. So, B is aware of the basic premise, and this time, it is definitely more in the fantasy realm than I’ve ever written before.
And I love it. My whole writing career I’ve reined in my desire to create imaginative characters and fanciful legends. I freely admit to being a Lord of the Rings fan. Maybe fanatic is the better word. I have watched the trilogy so many times I lost count. It never fails to stir the dream-factory in my head.
Then Game of Thrones came to life and I’m content watching it again and again as well. And it doesn’t hurt that one of my all-time favorite British actors was in both, though only for one movie/season. He keeps getting killed off! (Best ever death scene in The Fellowship of the Rings!) Yes, I’m talking about Sean Bean. We go way back to his youthful days starring in all the Sharpe’s movies for BBC, all fourteen.
This book is an interesting experiment, a change from our normal historical writing. But I’m excited to see where it goes, what B does with it when she gets it, and how our readers will react to it. That’s still a ways out, there’s another book in front of it, number three for Brit Darby. I’m already hoping number four is going to be our break-out best-seller. Especially since it’s the first of a trilogy (because I want to write more).
Time will tell. Stay tuned!