Updated: Nov 19, 2020
After an unexpected break in these posts, I have the absolute pleasure to bring you Avril Borthiry writing as Charlotte Wren! As she says, "The novella in the Christmas anthology is the first written under my pen name, Charlotte Wren"... which I think is quite exciting. New ventures are wonderful.
Do you have a certain quirk in your writing process? No, I don’t think so. Though sometimes I’ll write the ending of a story long before I actually get to it. Kind of like a lighthouse in a storm. LOL! I guess being a writer might be quirky enough!
[WB: I often write endings first, too! The "lighthouse" as a destination is important to me. Maybe it just means I need a beacon in order to write well?]
From all your books, who is your favorite hero and why? Eeek! This is a tough one. I tend to fall in love with all my heroes. I think, after consideration, I’d have to go with Alexander Mathanach, the hero in The Cast of a Stone. He’s purely a fantasy character, created for a fantasy story, and older than what might be considered the norm for a hero. He’s very complex, yet I understood him from the start, as if I’d known him forever. He’s a man tortured by events in his past, blinded by a sense of pride and denial that won’t allow him to see a truth that is right in front of him. I loved writing him and his story. This book, however, is not one for the faint-of-heart! If Alex is my favorite hero, the villain in the book is the cruelest of any I’ve written! He’s terrible!
[WB: For everyone following along, Alex falls under Avril's established works, not Charlotte Wren's! I'm a fan; go read it. (Link above.) I tend to gravitate toward older and complex heroes. Give it a go if you do, too.]
Outside of your own genre, what’s your favorite genre? I have two, actually. Sci-fi and high fantasy.
What are your favorite winter traditions?
Before “that-which-I-will-not-mention”, I liked to travel. Winters here are severe. By February, I’m dying to see some green grass and water that’s actually moving.
How do you feel about Dickens, really? (It’s okay to dislike him.) I like him! I admire him. He has done what any writer worth his or her salt would love to do, and that is to create stories that have endured over time, loved by generations.
What inspired you to write your O Night Divine story? I have a new Victorian romance series – The Highfield Chronicles - coming out with Dragonblade in 2021. My Christmas story serves to introduce several of the characters who will be a part of the series.
If you could say something kind to reassure people this season, what would it be? I would encourage anyone in need of kindness or support not to be afraid to reach out. We are traveling through these strange times together. There will always be someone willing to help, to talk, to share advice or moral support, myself included.
If you absolutely had to meet the ghost of Christmas Past, Future, or Present, which would you choose? The future, assuming it could be changed if necessary. The past is done. The present offers doorways to the future, so it might be nice to know which doors to leave closed!
[WB: I think, culturally, the fiction we've created in the west around "the future" is so pessimistic and anxious. (Traditional time-travel stories tend to have a lot of rules about how to interact with the future, for example, for fear of messing something up.) This is a much better way of approaching it!]
Thank you so, so, so much to Av, who had some radio silence from me before I finally posted.
I hope we're all doing well? I know "well" can be subjective.
I'm hunkering down with my family for the foreseeable, but that just means that I have more time to work, read, and have anxiety attacks. (I'm not actually making light of them, and I hope, if anyone in my sphere does have anxiety issues or conditions, that they've found the right resources for them. I'm a good listener and sign-poster, if not.)
Until Friday, and our next author interview...
P.S. If you haven't yet reserved a copy of O Night Divine, go on...