When and why did you begin writing?
I began writing when I was a teenager, just after I finished high school. I was inspired by fantasy novels and books with elfish and fairy lore like George Macdonald and Tolkien, as well as Romantic poetry like Blake and Keats, who also wrote heaps about fairies and the otherworld. I was also a bit inspired by writers from the Golden Dawn Hermetic Magic tradition like Dion Fortune and W.B, Yeats. So you will find lots of these three influences in my writing.
Can you share with readers a little about your latest book?
The story is about a young teenage girl (Mirabelle), who lives totally in her world of fantasy adventure books, like Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, etc. And, after making a Wish with her little brother, she discovers a Magic Box with a very mysterious and enigmatic riddle in it. The riddle has been left for Mirabelle by her admirer, the Magician and Alchemist Night Opium, who wants to make her his apprentice and share his knowledge of Magic and Goldmaking with her. After that, Mirabelle discovers that she is not only caught up in the most amazing adventure, but she has also become the central player in a very exciting and enchanted game, called the Dungeons of Lethe Game.
In this game, it is her job to defeat several powerful rivals in three Magical Battles, each more psychologically demanding and grueling than the last. Fortunately for her, she has powerful allies to help her: her friends Lucy and Freddy, the saucy one foot one Fairy, Apricot Lantern, the madly eccentric Father of Wishes and Night Opium himself. In the nail-biting climax to the book, which takes place in the historic centre of Westminster London, the heroine understands that not only her own fate but also that of everyone she loves, depends on both her victory in the Dungeons of Lethe Game, along with her finally solving the Riddle of Night Opium.
Tell us more about your main character. What makes him or her unique?
Well, Mirabelle is very special because she not only loves books more than anything else in the world, but she has also found a way to bring them to life. Mirabelle’s Grandma is a Witch and she teaches her granddaughter some special Magic tricks. After that, the world of her imagination and her everyday world cross over and Mirabelle has adventures just like the heroines in her favorite stories, where she meets Witches, Wizards, Fairies, Unicorns and so on. This is just what she has always dreamed about and wished for – to be a Princess in her own fantasy adventure story. But she soon discovers that even though she is a Princess there are also battles she has to fight and obstacles she has to overcome. Living in a Fairytale you see also has its dark sides. Just like real life!
Who is your favorite character in your book and why?
Mirabelle is the main heroine of the story. The entire book is narrated in the third person through her eyes. I love her as a character of course, but my favorite character is her best friend Lucy. Everyone in the book loves Lucy! She is witty, vivacious, charming, a little bit mad and totally unpredictable and fearless. She is also a kind of Fairy Queen in disguise so that gives her the opportunity to do loads of Magic – and in the end, both she and Mirabelle learn heaps from each other and they discover that they both share a very special bond that makes them inseparable!
Who is the least favorite character in your book and why?
That’s an interesting question. And I think a lot of people will really dislike the wicked Nightshadow Fairy – the villain in the story. She is very beautiful and clever, but at the same time she is also very manipulative, hardhearted and cruel. She is a very complex character and It is hard for me to hate her, because, even though it is her job to destroy Mirabelle in the Dungeons of Lethe Game, she also has a soft spot in her cold heart for the young Princess. And you will see what happens with that when you read the story. I won’t spoil it here!
Who are some of your favorite authors that you feel were influential in your work?
There are so many influences which helped shape this story. The most important ones are the fantasy books like Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, the Narnia and Harry Potter books. There is also the Romantic tradition of myth and Fairy lore which is present in writers like George Macdonald and poets like William Blake. Finally, there are also the authors on Magic and Hermetic Philosophy. For those who have read J.K. Rowling’s first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, and have wondered what lies behind the age-old tradition of the Philosopher’s Stone and Alchemy, you will get a quite a few details about that in my new book! As well as one or two surprises!
Tell us something unique about you?
There is not so much to tell, But I think the most unique thing about me is that not only do I love writing in the Fairytale and epic Fantasy tradition, but I also TOTALLY believe in the characters of my books and I am not satisfied with them until they are fully fleshed out with their own personality and background history. I not only want my characters to be entertaining and tell a good story – entertaining the reader is the main ingredient for writing a successful novel – but I also want them to give me one or two good reasons for why they want me to write about them! I am very stubborn and determined in that way.
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