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Saturday 24 October 2015

ℚ♫ Girl of Myth and Legend: The Chosen [1] - Giselle Simlett

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about Girl of Myth and Legend (, WWS Publishing) a Romantic Fantasy book one of The Chosen.

Synopsis | Trailer | Teaser | Author Q&A | About the Author | Giveaway & Tour Stops

A big welcome to Giselle Simlett; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter.

What was the inspiration for Girl of Myth and Legend?

"I’ve always loved dark and gritty fairy tales, and dystopia fiction.  I wanted to combine the two into a story somehow, but I wasn’t quite sure how!
That’s when the main character of the book, Leonie, kind of burst into my head, and said, ‘Finally! Are you going to be the one to tell my story?’  I had no choice but to write it after that.

Another great inspiration was the downside to immortality.  Immortality sounds great, but what if you spent forever in a cage, ruled by masters who treated you worse than dirt?  That wouldn’t be much fun.  I really wanted to explore that with the other main character, Korren.

When I think about it, another inspiration was the thought of two beings being bound forcibly by magic.  In my book, this is called a soul-binding, which is what happens to Leonie and Korren.  The two don’t like each other very much but are forced together, so they kind of have no choice but to work together if they’re going to survive the events of the novel."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"I love lyrical language, so I tried to make that a part of the characters’ narrative as well.  I certainly think that Leonie and Korren have some aspects of myself in them.  Leonie sometimes doubts herself when it’s most important that she doesn’t – like me.  Korren can’t face his grief, which is something I went through. I think that’s why the characters are so real to me: because we’ve faced the same emotions and sometimes we’ve conquered them and sometimes we’ve been unable to without a helping hand."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for Girl of Myth and Legend - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"I adore the cover!  I love the idea of dark colours and silhouettes and I wanted a mystical kind of cover that went with the theme of the book.  The designer is from Design For Writers, a company that specialises in covers for artists.  It’s quite cheap and they do multiple re-designs in case you don’t like them, and for free."
Why should we read Girl of Myth and Legend and what sets it apart from the rest? What makes your book unique?
"“All the most popular themes of Young Adult Fantasy are in Girl of Myth and Legend – the specialness of teenagers, the burden of responsibility, the power and potential they have – but there are also deeper themes: pre-destination vs free will, and the conflict between doing the right thing for everyone else and doing the right thing for yourself and those about whom you care.

The most important Unique Selling Point of this series though is in the characterization – between the earnest righteousness of Harry Potter and the hard-bitten survivalism of Katniss Everdeen stands Leonie Woodville – ordinary yet powerful, sarcastic yet kind, Chosen yet determined to choose her friends, her path and her so-called destiny for herself.  She’s a character modern teenagers will be able to identify with in both her flippancy and her caring nature, and she will be the locus of normality that will hold the readers all the way through this series of fantasy adventures – particularly as she grows up and her relationship with Korren, her sullen guardian, develops into something increasingly complicated.”"
Can you tell us something quirky about Girl of Myth and Legend, its story and characters?
"Well, Leonie didn’t always have a name, but she always had a nickname that Korren gave her, which is little lion. Leonie means lion, so it just fit perfectly.

As for Korren, his name came up like this: Cory > Corri > Corine > Korine > Kora > Korren"
Who would you recommend Girl of Myth and Legend to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"I’d recommend this book to anyone who loves character development over plot. In my book, you characterization is not sacrificed for plot. You will end up caring about the characters, so that when danger hits, you’ll actually be worried for them.

I would say there are some themes that may be distressing for certain people, but this can’t be avoided in books. A main theme is loss and grief and facing it. Some people may not be ready to face their own grief, so may not like the book for that.

I certainly think 13+ is a good age to read this book, but it is certainly a YA novel. "
If you could / wished to turn Girl of Myth and Legend and the The Chosen series into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"I haven’t thought too much about it, but if it ever got turned into a movie, I’d want James Newton Howard to compose the music for it.  I listen to all his compositions.

Hmm, my favourite director is Christopher Nolan, but I don’t think he’d be right to direct a GOMAL movie, so I’m not sure.

As for actors, I also have no clue!  All I know is Mark Rylance would be great as Sebastian Crato, the Head of the Council of the Imperium."
What do you like to write and read about?  Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"I’m all about YA fantasy. I find it hard to write anything else.  I love that I can have a normal setting and make it weird somehow!  I do read fantasy, but I tend to get put off by it because there are so many strange names and places, so with my book, I tried to make it as simple as possible.  Rather than following someone who already lives within that fantasy world, my book follows a girl who was raised in our world and who experiences this new world with the reader."
What is your writing process?
"I really don’t have one.  I can only write when I HAVE to write.  I can’t be like, ‘Oh, it’s 2pm I have to write for two hours now and do 50 pages.’  I just can’t write like that.  If I do, my writing suffers for it.  I don’t need to be inspired, but I have to have this impulse to write.  The downside to this is I don’t finish my writing as fast as others.

I also listen to music to help unblock my head.  I especially listen to instrumental music."
What is in store next?
"Girl of Myth and Legend is the first book in The Chosen Saga.  I’m working on the next book currently: Order of Ashes.  Hopefully that will come out in April.  At the moment I’m planning for a 9 book series, but I don’t want to drag it out, so I’m hoping I can get it down a few books – this might prove tricky, though, as the overall plot is quite massive!"
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"Oh God!  OK, fine.  Because I’m so awesome at embarrassing myself, I’ll give you a picture of me and my dog that was taken in 2013 when I was pregnant with my son.  Look at my eyebrows!  Freaking hell.  I blame my unborn child for my lack of presentation.  And what is the dog doing?  Is she smiling?  No way.  My dog is the grumpiest dog you’ll meet.  I got her when I was 10 – she was a runt.  I called her Eevee because I was obsessed with Pokemon.  She’s 14 now, and still as grumpy as ever.  But that just makes her a Simlett – we’re all grumpy sods ;D"
Yep, she was definitely smiling - possibly just to spite you ;-)
Hello Eevee!  You're far too beautiful to be grumpy!
Thank you for sharing her with us.

"Thank you for the interview!  It was great being here.  As an extra treat, I’ve provided a song from Girl of Myth and Legend Official Soundtrack!  It’s called Girl of Myth and Legend by Aika Zabala and Kaz Zabala, and produced by WWS Publishing Ltd.  Enjoy!"

Brilliant, thank you!  Readers can win one of three copies of the Official Soundtrack by entering the giveaway.

Girl of Myth and Legend
On Sale 29 December 2015!

Girl of Myth and Legend

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