I’ve revealed elsewhere those things that inspired the writing of this tale. They may be found on my blog page under the heading ‘Fifty Years in the Making’. However, there has been far more than just literary influences poured into each page.
Write What You Know (?)
Every writing guide you care to imagine counsels authors: ‘write what you know’. Whilst this suggestion is open-ended I believe the emphasis is on experience and emotions. There are, therefore, many examples where this ‘outpouring’ occurs in my book. Here I’ll reveal two. In each example my main characters describe elements of their lives that have direct bearing on the events taking place in the tale.
The voices are those of my characters; the experiences and emotions, however, are mine.
In the first, the protagonist, Levi, explains his sorrow at having to kill an enemy:
It was I who killed the robin when I, like Levi, was a young teenager and yes, it did squeak. It was one of those life-events that burns onto the memory and it is experiences such as this that provide an author with a near endless source of material. I believe this is the true interpretation of the ‘write what you know’ principle.
In the second example, Levi’s sister, Poppy, gives comfort to one of the villagers. Here again I called on my own experience in creating the scene:
These then are a couple of tasters from the story.
Whilst I did search for the door that inspired the tale, I have no experience of travel to another dimension, nor in fighting four-foot tall polecats armed with swords. However, I have been able to call on a well-spring of life-knowledge and emotional familiarity. These, together with imagination a-plenty have been the resources for this, my first novel.
I don’t believe the tale to be autobiographical in any way, but a fiction writer cannot fail but to impart even a hint of him – or her-self onto the pages. Consequently I’m unable to read this tale without feeling the same sentiments as my characters.
I hope that my readers will be able to relate to the story in the same way.