• Fiona McIntosh: Voyager Author of the Month

    Fiona McIntosh was born and raised in Sussex in the UK, but also spent early childhood years in West Africa. She left a PR career in London to travel and settled in Australia in 1980. She has since roamed the world working for her own travel publishing company, which she runs with her husband. She lives in Adelaide with her husband and twin sons. Her website is at www.fionamcintosh.com.

    Her latest book, The Scrivener's Tale, is a stand-alone and takes us back to the world of Morgravia from her very first series, The Quickening:


    About The Scrivener's Tale:

    In the bookshops and cafes of present-day Paris, ex-psychologist Gabe Figaret is trying to put his shattered life back together. When another doctor, Reynard, asks him to help with a delusional female patient, Gabe is reluctant... until he meets her. At first Gabe thinks the woman, Angelina, is merely terrified of Reynard, but he quickly discovers she is not quite what she seems.

    As his relationship with Angelina deepens, Gabe's life in Paris becomes increasingly unstable. He senses a presence watching and following every move he makes, and yet he finds Angelina increasingly irresistible.

    When Angelina tells Gabe he must kill her and flee to a place she calls Morgravia, he is horrified. But then Angelina shows him that the cathedral he has dreamt about since childhood is real and exists in Morgravia.

    A special 10th Anniversary edition of her first fantasy book, Myrren's Gift, will be released in December!

     

     

Evoking the Gods Part I: The myth of Character Development

Creating characters for Quantum Enchantment was like praying to the gods—they had to be evoked. When they came to life, they promptly took over the story, expanding their roles, dominated the scenes and behaved in ways contrary to anything I had planned. I found myself often saying, ‘Oh really? You’re doing that?’ (Like Traci Harding, I talk to my characters too!)

Kreshkali was the worst. She entered the world much like the goddess Athene, the daughter of Zeus. You know the tale? Zeus swallowed Meta whole and after a few days developed a severe headache. Prometheus [some say Hephaestus] cleaved his head with an ax and out sprang his daughter Athene, full grown, sword in hand, screaming a war cry. I didn’t have the headache but when I opened a new door, there stood Kreshkali. Before I could step aside she was on the page, and well, when you read the story, you’ll know what I mean. She’s my answer to Margaret Atwood’s question, ‘Is it somehow ‘unfeminist’ to depict a woman behaving badly?’ Ha!

The Spell of Rosette

Kim's new book

Rosette’s appearance was more graceful. She was the first to arrive and she has matured with the story as any child might. Her familiar Drayco was a surprise though. He emerged like a nature god from depths of the Dumarkian Woods. He is also the product of living with felines—two black cats who sit like bookends on either side of my screen and watch me work. Drayco’s mannerisms are definitely gleaned from them. I remember Robin Hobb saying her son’s body language gave her a model for Fitz and I know what she means–writing is life drawing sometimes.

The most challenging of my characters was An’ Lawrence. I found myself like Mary Shelley, sewing together bits and pieces of his persona and physique until the form was there awaiting animation. When he leapt onto the page I stood back and smiled. There’s a man I’d love to meet, moods and all. His familiar, Scylla, awoke when he did and would not be dissuaded. I think they met in a previous life.

Jarrod’s creation I best not speak of. It would give too much away. He is the abstraction, the ‘what if,’ that took the story beyond the confines of strict fantasy. And Nellion Paree? Her character appeared much like Aphrodite who was born when Saturn lopped off his father’s genitals and tossed them into the sea. Like the goddess of love, Nell is alluring though she has the ‘iron fist inside the velvet glove quality’ Libras are known for. Yes, she’s a Libra. As an astrologer, I give my characters horoscopes. If I’m ever uncertain of how they might behave, I check their chart. Moon in Pisces? Disappear. Sun in Aries? Advance. Mercury in Libra? Discuss it with everyone for quite some time before deciding what to do. Astrology is a wonderful way to get inside a character’s head. More on that in the next post. Comments and questions always welcome!

This series on Evoking the Gods will be continued later this week – next post on Wednesday, when Kim Falconer’s first novel The Spell of Rosette will be hitting bookshelves across Australia!

Visit Quantum Enchantment, Kim’s brand new website.

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2 Responses

  1. Wow, Kim, I am so drawn into your creative process. I love to study creative processes because it is such a mystery and so many emotions come into play. Thanks for telling me this. I love the horoscope insight into writing about the characters. I truly think this is precious.

    Thanks

  2. Hi Iyabo,

    I agree, the creative process is a mystery that we are constantly exploring. And, it is full of surprises!

    Thank you for dropping by!

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