Today I’d like to welcome Jennifer Deese, fantasy author of The Orchid Keeper.
Can you give us your quickest description of your book?
Drowning in denial Coras’ life is in a fast downward spiral. After a visit from an eccentric man she finds herself magically transported by an Orchid to the fantastical world of Osipia. Can Sol, an Orchid Keeper of that world, help her find a way to save her soul? Will Osipian magic show her the right path?
Ooh, cool. Do you enjoy creating your own world?
Indeed I do. Creating worlds and creatures is certainly one of my favorite things about writing fantasy.
What are you working on currently?
I am working on another book in that series, called The Fading Light. It should be written in completion by the end of February, then it’s on to formatting, final edits, cover etc.
How many books do you have planned for your series?
Four and a prequel. The sequence may change up a bit from what I originally thought.
What is your favorite scene you’ve written? Can you give us a peek?
Though I really love a couple scenes from The Orchid Keeper, my debut novelette, I am thrilled with this scene from my WIP, The Fading Light:
As she turned her eyes fell on Linlee. Cora was struck and frozen by the scene. In the middle of the circular cove Linlee stood , her arms outstretched and her face turned toward the piece of sky above. She chanted mesmerizingly. Her body began to pulse and Linlee began to blur and fade, as if she was between time and space. Somehow she had brushed aside the veil between spaces in time and was standing, not in the cove, but on the edge of where everything met. Where everything was nothing and nothing was everything at the same time. The rhythm of the energy and the lilting way she vocalized brought a quiet to the place that soothed one’s soul. Around her the others began to pay rapt attention to what the Weaver was doing. The Osipains took to their knees,placing their hands down on the ground with eyes focused on the pulsing woman before them. Cora felt herself knelt as well, and at the very moment her palms touched the ground a beam of light shot through the canopy. The light stopped, about twenty feet, above the ground. As a comforting tone sounded the light refracted, spreading itself outwards. Sloping toward the ground it took the shape of an orb of that encompassed the cove and all inside it.
That’s very visual – I can picture everything. Do you like to use a lot of description to give your readers the images in your head?
Yes, I am indeed a very descriptive writer. However, while being descriptive I have been told I’m not so descriptive that I lose my readers in the process.
What is one bit of advice you’d like to share with writers?
Never stop writing. No matter, the reviews, the ratings etc., be true to yourself and write the way you like to write.
What is one question about your books that you wish more people would ask?
I really wish people would inquire as to where I came up with the name Osipia. It’s a rather interesting answer …even if I say so myself.
So what IS the answer? 🙂
Osipia comes from the botanical /scientific name of a type Orchid. I took some of the letters and rearranged them until I had a world name I was happy with. Also, in my Work in progress , The Rothalli and The Devalli names were brought to life in the same manner.
That’s a cool way to get at names! Who inspires you to write?
People, my life, and authors that have made an impression on me; Diana Gaboldon, JK Rowling, Tolkien, Richard Bach, Anthony Pierce.
In a perfect world where you could cast your book for a movie, who would you pick for your main characters?
I think Johnny Depp would make a wonderful Sol. I am not sure about Cora.
When you get stuck in your writing, how do you make yourself keep going?
Reading others’ work, music, & a hike help me get the creative flow back.
Do you use your personal experiences in your writing?
The Orchid Keeper and The Fading Light ( WIP) deal with addiction in magical ways and yes, my own insights have lent a hand, but the books and characters remain fictitious.
Is there anything you’ve read that made you jealous you didn’t think of it first?
Not really jealous, instead I have read thing that inspire me, Alice in Wonderland and The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe are two examples.
I’m a big fan of The Chronicles of Narnia as well. Alice in Wonderland too. They both are extremely fantastical worlds, don’t you think? Is that inspiration for the kind of imagery you try to give your readers?
Absolutely, it’s those childhood favorites that have inspired both the way I write and the reason I write.
Thanks, Jennifer, for sharing!