Hi Gillian! Thank you so much for venturing to other worlds with me. I’m really excited about your visit. And thanks for offering a giveaway. A signed a copy of your new release – YAY! Readers, you need only comment below for a chance to win.
Okay, Gillian, tell me three things about yourself that would surprise your readers (mine too).
Three things about me that folks might not know? Let’s see. I’m a volunteer fire-fighter on a slightly red-neck volunteer fire department. I once had a pet bat named Smeagol—don’t worry, it only lasted a few days, and I did wear gloves whenever I handled him. When I was little, I had dreams of becoming a knight errant, Dunedain ranger, or (nice?) pirate ship captain when I grew up. Unfortunately, none of the local colleges offered degree programs for any of those majors, so I chose writing instead as a way of exploring them all!
Okay, I might be one of the most boring people in the world. LOL! You’re “secret life” is fascinating. So you write, and you read…which author(s) do you most admire? Why?
I admire Andrew Peterson and his way of telling a story that rings true and beautiful in every way. Also Brandon Sanderson and his ability to build a storyworld so vast and real and vivid that it feels like it could actually exist, not to mention his great characters!
Great choices. What’s your favorite book? Why?
Oh dear, I’m afraid this is the impossible question. I read a ton of books, love a lot of books, and consider a slightly smaller number to be favorites. But choosing one favorite book is beyond my powers of decisiveness. Lord of the Rings has always been and probably always will be one of my favorites. But another book that I am just as likely to pick up and re-read is Enemy Brothers by Constance Savory. It was written and takes place during WWII about a young German boy who finds himself claimed by an English family as their long lost brother. I love the way the English family takes him in and treats him as one of their own despite his determination to retain his German upbringing, and his older brother Dym serves as an awesome picture of unconditional love.
Lord of the Rings is one of my favorites too. I’ll have to add Enemy Brothers to my to-be-read list. Of all the books you choose to read, what is your favorite genre? How about writing?
I love reading and writing fantasy. It’s definitely my overall favorite. I will pick up a book from pretty much any other genre as long as it catches my attention, and I’ve had a few novel ideas for other genres. But there’s just something about the magical and fantastic that allows truth and reality to shine all the clearer.
Agreed. Now, let’s talk about Orphan’s Song. Where did you get the idea, as well as continued inspiration, for your novel?
My ideas tend to come at the oddest times in the oddest places. At times, novel ideas materialize almost completely formed in the back of my brain and I consider myself lucky. Other times, they appear as thousands of puzzle pieces scattered across the floor, and I have to figure out how they all fit together or if they even belong in the same project.
Orphan’s Song began with a name “Birdie” and a “what if” question scribbled on a sticky note. What if there was an orphan girl who could hear snippets of a song that no one else could … and what if that song was powerful?
I started writing at that point without a hint of a plot in mind, and four wild and meandering drafts later, the true story was born.
I have since rethought my writing process. [big smile]
Tell me a bit about your main characters. Who did you have the most fun creating? Why?
Orphan’s Song has three main point of view characters—which can be a lot to keep up with. Birdie is an orphan with a sweet spirit matched only by her courage and the ability to keep on keeping on, but at the heart of it all, she is a lost little girl just searching for a place to belong.
Ky is a pickpocket from the city of Kerby where he struggles to survive with the other orphans in the Underground. But instead of allowing the trials of life to harden him, Ky keeps fighting to care and look out for those around him.
Amos McElhenny is a traveling peddler with a bit of a mysterious past. With his penchant for creative insults, Amos was and still is one of my favorite characters to write! His scenes tend to take on a life of their own. He can be a bit stubborn like that.
Oooh, I can hardly wait to read your story. Are you planning a sequel?
Yes, Orphan’s Song is the first book in the Songkeeper Chronicles trilogy, so I’m currently working on book two! I can’t tell y’all too much about it yet, but in this book we get to explore much more of the world of Leira and what it means to be a Songkeeper so I’m super excited about that.
Before we finish, what advice do you have for fellow writers (published and unpublished)?
Never allow fear to keep you from writing! I think a lot of time, our “writer’s block” is actually fear. Fear that we can’t make it work, fear that we can’t write well enough, fear that we will disappoint our readers, fear that we will disappoint ourselves. But we can’t allow fear to stop us, because if we give in without allowing ourselves the chance to fail or succeed, then we are choosing to fail.
Great advice, Gillian. Truly.
Every generation has a Songkeeper—one chosen to keep the memory of the Song alive. And in every generation, there are those who seek to destroy the chosen one.
When Birdie’s song draws the attention of a dangerous Khelari soldier, she is kidnapped and thrust into a world of ancient secrets and betrayals. Rescued by her old friend, traveling peddler Amos McElhenny, Birdie flees the clutches of her enemies in pursuit of the truth behind the Song’s power.
Ky is a street-wise thief and a member of the Underground—a group of orphans banded together to survive … and to fight the Khelari. Haunted by a tragic raid, Ky joins Birdie and Amos in hopes of a new life beyond the reach of the soldiers. But the enemy is closing in, and when Amos’ shadowed past threatens to undo them all, Birdie is forced to face the destiny that awaits her as the Songkeeper of Leira.
You can purchase Orphan’s Song on Amazon.
Gillian Bronte Adams is a sword-wielding, horse-riding, coffee-loving speculative fiction author from the great state of Texas. During the day, she manages the equestrian program at a Christian youth camp, but at night, she kicks off her boots and spurs and transforms into a novelist. You can hang out with her on her blog or facebook page where she loves discussing all things to do with books, fantasy, and characters.
on her Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/gillianbronteadams
on her Blog: Of Battles, Dragons, and Swords of Adamant
on Twitter: https://twitter.com/theSongkeeper
And don’t miss out on the contest on her blog right now!
9 thoughts on “Orphan’s Song: An Interview with Gillian Bronte Adams”
I have a fond place in my heart for volunteer firefighters! Years ago, my family was temporarily stranded in the middle of Kansas when our motorhome’s engine caught on fire. The volunteer fireman from the closest town showed up to help–in his rusty pick up truck with a water tank on the back. He arranged transportation into the town, got his wife (the school superintendent) to stay late at school to give us somewhere with air conditioning to hang out while our motorhome was towed, and was generally the nicest person we met on that entire vacation!
Oh wow! What a great story, Tricia. I’ve personally been helped by volunteer firefighters before too, so I really enjoy getting to be on the department and help others out 🙂
Oh wow, Tricia! What a great story. I’ve personally been helped by volunteer firefighters before too, so I really enjoy getting to be on the department and helping others out! 🙂
I really enjoyed the book. I think everyone should read it. 🙂
Wonderful interview with Gillian. I’m from a very small town in Texas and I SO appreciate the volunteer firefighters. We had a house fire when I was growing up. I look forward to reading “Orphan’s Song”. 🙂
Orphan’s Song sounds like a great fantasy. And you sound like a great person, Gillian! 🙂
I really want to read Orphan’s Song! Is the volunteer fire department the one that a lot of people from Frontier Camp are in?
Awesome interview! And I particularly like your brilliant words, Gillian: “there’s just something about the magical and fantastic that allows truth and reality to shine all the clearer.” So true! ^_^ I love fantasy that way.
And the winner is…Tricia Mingerink! (Great last name, by the way – totally fantastical!) Gillian will contact you soon to work out details. Blessings!