This post was inspired by Victoria Lynn, my fellow author and friend – I loved the idea for this post and I wanted to take a try at it. But I do have 4 less facts then she did – my book is shorter.
And now – let us kick off a WHOLE week of The Reluctant Godfather with some fun and facts!
1. When I first started writing fifteen years ago, pretty much all I wrote was fairy tale retellings – but then I largely abandoned them to move onto more ‘serious’ works. Ironically, things have come full circle again and I’m focusing on fairy tales again – the place I loved and had forgotten. It’s nice to be home again.
2. I always appreciated the beauty and allegorical possibilities of fairy tales – but ‘The Reluctant Godfather’ has taught me afresh how sweet fairy tales are — that they are no less important than any other genre — and a pleasant and lovely rest (for readers and writers alike) from harder styles.
3. The Reluctant Godfather trained me to write more succinctly and ultimately create a stronger narrative. Before this, I mostly wrote 300 page + epics.
4. The Reluctant Godfather has suggested to me that I am actually happier and more comfortable writing shorter works.
5. The rough draft took me 3 weeks to write.
6. I got the idea for the story the night I returned from visiting the Ark Encounter. No connection, obviously.
7. Like Burndee—I love to bake.
8. I originally had no intention of writing a sequel.
9. But after getting enthusiastic feedback encouraging me to write more – bang! – the ideas for seven sequels all began tumbling into my mind.
10. The Reluctant Godfather came to me at one time—almost completely intact in my head—all I had to do was right it down.
11. Reading Nicole Sager for the first time last summer really inspired me, and I credit her example as being one of people that really encouraged me to ‘go for it’ and actually publish.
12. This is the first story that has ever been shown or seen by anyone outside of my immediate five family members.
13. My original suggestions for a cover was something like – “black with lots of fancy swirling things, sophisticated” – obviously a little vague. But I am so happy with how my beautiful cover turned out! Victoria Lynn did a fabulous job.
14. Amazon kept rejecting my cover and it took me days to sort out the problem. I had so much trouble uploading it I nearly went with an alternate design for the cover – but, fortunately, it all got sorted out.
15. Prince Colin appears to have a ‘love ’em or leave ’em’ effect on readers. You’ll have to read it yourself to decide whether you love him or not. 🙂
16. In the original draft, Countess de Ghent was actually Baroness Tremaine, Portia was actually named Druzilla, Cynthia was named Anastasia, and Colin was named Harry. I wanted to distance myself not only from the Disney version but the real Prince Harry (who BTW looks nothing like what I imagine Colin to look like), so I changed all the names.
17. I didn’t use any reference photos of models or actors to inspire me for my characters – I actually don’t have very solid ideas for how my main characters look—my images for them are a little vague—which is major for me, since I usually use pictures to inspire me with all my characters.
18. I was not originally going to publish this in a paperback form, just an ebook – but I had so much lovely encouragement from readers that I decided to release a paperback edition.
19. The Reluctant Godfather taught me a lot about grammar, I didn’t realize realize how little I knew about grammar until I started working with my grammatical superiors! Which would be my editors and beta readers. 🙂
20. In the original draft, the city that my characters lived in did not have a name.
21. I had to cut a small scene of dialogue between Burndee and Ella that I really liked (Burndee was being VERY Burndee-ish) but it slowed down the flow of the story. Hopefully I’ll be able to use it in a future Tales of Ambia.