Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

"Excitement and dread at every turn" - The Dragon in the Garden (The Watcher Rising #1) by Erika Gardner

"From the first page I was captured by the wonder of the story unfolding page after page. Following Siobhan as characters entered and left her life in the past and the present. It was magical to watch as her team built for the chance at success while discovering new secrets that have long lay dormant. Excitement and dread at every turn, every battle won or lost." - Dominic, Goodreads


There is magic beneath the mundane and in The Dragon in the Garden, Siobhan Orsini witnesses it all. No lie can fool her, no glamour or illusion can cloud her Sight. She sees through them all and wishes she could close her eyes. Returning to face her past, Siobhan inherits her grandparents’ house in California’s wine country. She encounters a talking dragon, a hot fallen angel, a demon lord, a Valkyrie, and, oh yes, her ex-boyfriend. And that is just in the first twenty-four hours. 

It’s time to find out why she has this power. 

Siobhan seeks out the Oracle and learns that only her Sight can help mankind navigate the travails of an ancient war. Our world is the prize in a battle between the dragons, who would defend us, and Lucifer’s fallen angels, who seek to take the Earth for themselves. Using her gift, she will have to make a choice that will decide humanity’s future.

Characters Are People, Too

Characters are people, too. Damn it. 

No, I meant it. It flipping sucks. They’re unpredictable, unreliable, stubborn, changeable, and sometimes just flat out crazy—like people. 

There you’ll be, happily typing away when one of your characters, one of your creations, ups and steals the show. Saying and doing things that go against your glorious plan. They’ll take the story in a direction you never expected or for that matter even wanted. You’ve been hijacked. One would think that the author, who ought to be in control, could fix this. A little deleting here, a rewrite there and, voilà! Problem solved. Yeah, um, no. 

No matter what you do, nothing will feel quite right. 

*Cue author banging her head against the desk.* 

There, there. I have some good news for you. (Lean closer.) If this has happened to you then… *stage whisper*…you’re doing it right! 

You as the author should not actually be creating characters per se. Characters are boring, two-dimensional, flat. You should be releasing people out on to the world’s stage: complicated, whimsical, multi-faceted people. People your readers won’t be able to walk away from. Individuals who will be remembered and who will stick in the head of the person fortunate enough to pick up your book. The people populating your storyline should be as real as the teacher you loved from fifth grade or that horrible boss you had out of college. They should be able to stand toe-to-toe with the Severus Snapes, the Elizabeth Bennetts, the Smeagol/Gollums, the Scout Finchs, the Jo Marchs, and the Anne Shirleys of literature. We should recognize them if we were to meet them on the street. 

It’s frustrating. It’s hard. Those people can be super annoying, but your work will be better for it. I promise. 

Characters are people, too. Or at least, they should be. 

Damn it. 
About the author:
Erika is a sixth generation San Franciscan of Irish descent. She attended the University of California at Davis and completed degrees in Medieval History and Biological Sciences. A lifelong lover of books and a scribbler of many tales from a young age (her first story was completed at age five) she turned to writing full-time in 2011.

Erika resides in Northern California with her incredibly hot husband, their three amazing kids, and their chocolate Labrador named Selkie. To reach Erika regarding her books, wine recommendations, or to debate which Iron Maiden album is the best (clearly, it’s Brave New World), you can find her online at www.erikagardner.com.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting

Fee Roberts said...

This sounds fantastic, and the cover is gorgeous!