Tuesday, 12 June 2012

'Be Inspired' Blog Hop

Hey folks,

Another meme, though this give me an opportunity to write a little about the current novel in progress. I was tagged by the lovely Angela Goff (@Angela_Goff on twitter). As usual thanks for reading, and even if I don't tag you please take part anyway!

First, the rules:

1. Answer the ten questions
2. Tag five other writers, link to them in your post so we can hop over and see their answers too.

The Questions:

1. What is the name of your book:

Lucian (working title, possibly being changed to 'The Shadows at Sunrise').

2. Where did the idea for your book come from?

First, in my undergraduate degree I took a module entirely on Yeats. One of my favourite aspects of this module was studying Yeats' fascination with the Occult, and the so-called Occult Renaissance that took place at the end of the 19th Century. Societies like the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and Madame Blavatsky's Theosophical Society were so sure that they were about to discover something special, some hidden knowledge that would explain our place in the universe. I began to wonder, what if they did? What if we were contacted by some otherworldly force? The world of Lucian was born. Of course, since then the moment of contact in Lucian's world has been driven back by a few hundred years, but the seed was still in the Occult Renaissance of our world.

Secondly, and rather more simply, A man sat down in front of me in my mind's eye. He was a man who had seen things, a man who life had not been kind to. As with most writers this came completely out of the blue, but suddenly I was there, we were sitting in a dark bar, and he spoke to me. He said 'What I am about to tell you is true; you can choose to believe me, or you can walk out that door.' He motioned to the heavy door of the pub, cigarette still in hand, and took a draw. 'I don't care either way,' he finished, and I was hooked.

3. In what genre would you classify your book?

Young Adult Urban Fantasy

4. If you had to pick actors to play your characters in a movie rendition, who would you choose?  

I honestly have no idea. Unknowns would be good, simply because I don't want people looking at David, or Lucian, or any of my other characters and thinking 'oh hey, it's James Bond, and look there's the guy from Jumper'. Fresh faces are always good, so long as they can act. But why start thinking about this now? I have to finish the damn thing first.

5. Give us a one sentence synopsis of your book:

A teenage boy with the ability to see the dead is told that he is from a parallel Earth; taken there by the enigmatic Lucian, promised the truth about where he comes from, there are darker forces afoot that threaten not only Lucian's world, but all worlds.

6. Is your book already published/represented?

Not yet. I ran into some trouble with it, and it sat undisturbed for a while, but I believe I'm finally getting to a state where I can finish it. It's currently sitting at 66,000 words.

7. How long did it take to write your book?

Too long.

8. What other books within your genre would you compare it to? Or, readers of which books would enjoy yours? 

I'm honestly not sure. Readers of Garth Nix, Neil Gaiman, even J.K. Rowling. It's tough to say...it's dark at times, so I can only hope that readers of any upper band YA would likely enjoy it.

9. Which authors inspired you to write this book?

Obviously W.B. Yeats is responsible for the seed of the story itself. Otherwise, as above, writers like Neil Gaiman who are able to weave fantastically real fantasy worlds that skirt the edges of our society, or J.K. Rowling for her ability to carve a grandiose epic from a beginning so small.

10. Tell us anything that might pique our interest in your book.

I find it so hard to boil down the story to a single sentence, something which I know I will have to work on for query letters and suchlike. As such, here is a longer synopsis.

'Can anyone really change their destiny?

Seventeen year old David Gardener has always been able to see the spirits of the dead, and those nameless things that lurk just beyond the veil. He never knew his family, so when the enigmatic Lucian Ducant tells him he is from a parallel world, he doesn't know what to believe.

Desperate to discover where he comes from, clinging to the promise of answers, he joins Lucian in a world of cobbled streets and clockwork, where history took an entirely different turn and magic is fact. But something is stirring beyond the veil, and Lucian is not being entirely truthful with David. What of the strange dreams he is having, of the trenches and the dying, and the wall of mist so thick that it blocks out the sun? A terrible destiny awaits David, one which threatens not only the fate of the world he comes to think of as home, but the fate of every person in every world.'

And now – to tag five other bloggers (apologies if you've already been tagged):

Dreaming of Stories / @Afsaneh_Dreams
Catching Hummingbirds / @2CAHummingbird
Eilis Phillips / @EilisPhillips
Miranda Boers / @PurpleQueenNL
Angie Richmond / @write_me_happy


  1. Ooo, I have to read it now!! It so reminds me of one I shelved - well not complete, but the whole parallel worlds bit! Ooo, you must read Stephen King's - The Talisman if you haven't already, and the whole Dark Tower series - you will LOVE! (again if you haven't already) - SK doesn't just do horror.

    I will copy and paste questions into Word and fill out, and then if you would be so kind to post up on your blog...?

    Thanks for tagging me, this is fascinating. Can't wait to read more!

    1. Thank you =) Ah I'm a big Stephen King fan. I'm not reading the Dark Tower series yet though. You know what he's like - his metaverse culminates in the Dark Tower, so I want to read it when I've read a ton more of his stuff so I can appreciate the references.

      Glad you like the sound of the novel. And yes, of course, why don't you post it in the comments here?

  2. I love the sound of your book! Mist, magic and clockwork sounds like a mysteriously good combination. I've really enjoyed your style of writing with the short fiction pieces on your Blog, so the novel is something to look forward to! Must add, that I adore Garth Nix too!

    1. Thanks Lisa =)

      I'll admit I've only read Garth Nix's 'Old Kingdom' series, but man, I love that series. Garth Nix is more capable to create an utterly believable world than almost any author I know. From the first few pages, his system of Charter Magic and Free Magic, his world of the dead, and the interplay between Ancelstierre and the Old Kingdom is masterful.

      Hope you'll read Lucian/The Shadows at Sunrise if and when it is published!

  3. I would totally buy that book based on your response to #10. That. Sounds. FASCINATING.

    Thanks for sharing!!!

    1. Thank you Angela, this really means a lot =) and thanks for tagging me in the first place!

  4. "What of the strange dreams he is having, of the trenches and the dying, and the wall of mist so thick that it blocks out the sun?"
    Wow, Matt, really! Your synopsis is just captivating.
    I think you ought to pick up where you left off and finish this gem of a story.
    And, you owe me a signed copy :)

    1. Thank you Afsaneh =) really glad that you like the sound of it. I'm gearing up to it - hopefully will have the first draft completed very soon.
      We'll see about a signed copy ;)

  5. Finish this bloody novel, Matt!!!!! *Shakes fist* and send me a copy ;) x