A Long Journey Comes to a Close
Soon. Very soon, Time Captives will be over. It's really kind of hard for me to believe; I've been working on it since December 10, 2012 at Disney World, and it's been floating around in my head for much longer than that. Calhortea had been in my head for even longer, but it's quite unrecognizable from the original conception. I had so many ideas for stories set in this world, but some are no longer canon, others are now fully written, and others are too underdeveloped for me to actually write. And so this world in which I've spent so much time is bidding me an indefinite farewell.
Not to be too sad -- I'm still determined to write a sequel to Espionage if I can ever iron the kinks out of the plot and I'd love to write that story about Captain Herb's son Edmund since it actually came to me prior to the family's entrance into Time Captives -- but primarily...Crannig Castle is still to come! And that's the main point of this post.
November 7 is coming up fast! Hopefully the paperback will be available on time -- I think the reason I got ahead on proofs is because of the hurricane, if I hadn't, I'd be waiting indefinitely on my first proof, not the second. Also, how in the world did I schedule my publishing date the day before the election and only just realize it now? The schedule of my life has always revolved around election cycles! But I've realized that I haven't talked much about Crannig Castle itself. I'm not quite sure how that happened. Maybe because I didn't want to give away previous books?
Crannig Castle was the easiest book of the trilogy to write. I'm not sure if I like it or The Crossways better...it's probably a tie. See, when I started the story, I envisioned it as an easy-to-get-to climax, just the way storming Theotocop was in Across the Stars. Big problem. I had no idea what an ordeal it would be for them to meet up with their ancestors. I was totally clueless about George and Abigail's pasts, and I had no idea about their friendship with Camthalion, Ranna's rescue, Mudan's death, that they ever even were anywhere except the dungeon...actually, though I knew Toarna had tried to execute them, I thought it was simply because they were prophesied to overthrow her. To be perfectly honest, I made up all the flashback stuff in Creighton Hill as I went along.
I had no idea when I started Creighton Hill how Joseph was imprisoned on the island. I knew he lived there, but why did he have to stay? I didn't know until the Hubbards got there, in what was then (even though I knew already it would be multiple books) still Creighton Hill. I had no idea that Adriel even existed, or that it would have to be him that was able to free the king. I didn't even know he was part merfolk until I started imagining out the scene where he arrives at the Crossways. I didn't know that Eleanor would meet the love of her life and be unable to marry because she could not grow up.
I didn't know that Vannie existed until the end of 2013, and I didn't know just how different Briznom was from my original conception and what role it would play.
END SPOILERS FOR CREIGHTON HILL AND THE CROSSWAYS
But by the time I sat down to write Crannig Castle on October 2, 2014, I had it all pretty well figured out. My characters threw me a few surprises, sure, and I guess I didn't plan everything about the twist in the middle, though it was a natural way to include one of my family's suggestions, but I knew what I was doing, and I'd even prewritten the ending and an Eleanor scene.
Crannig Castle has a lot to do with loose ends and bringing things full circle. That is to say, I connect the end with the beginning, but it's more of a spiral. They're in somewhat of the same place that they were before (as is natural with portal fantasy), but they've been so changed by the experience that they aren't really in the same place. And no, I don't tie up every single loose end, I do want to leave some room for companion novels, and not even master of English fantasy Tolkien tied up every loose end. I mean, whatever happened to the Entwives?! But here are some things you can expect from Crannig Castle.
- Revisiting Eleanor and Grant's story. I've only scratched the surface of their story, and since Eleanor's journey in this book brings up more memories, it was perfect for more flashbacks. And other things.
- More about Adriel's family. They're in Calhortz somewhere, and he's desperate to reunite them, so why not?
- Vannie and Kyle. Briznom has the biggest non-stryte army, so it's only natural that they should ask for help. And how could I not bring those two back?
- My baby Joey growing up. :'( Actually, that's a happy thing, but he was such a little kid at the beginning and now he's displaying leadership qualities. He's grown so much.
- Olithea! A cross between Lothlorien and Swiss Family Robinson, Olithea is the home of my elves. I like it, even if they don't spend a lot of time there.
- Lots of references. I haven't counted, but I like to make fantasy and pop culture references, particularly in Jonathan and Joey's POVs.
- Healing. The Time Captives and Adriel have been through so much, but I can't leave them totally broken. I prefer the hopeful message.
- Have the tissues ready. Because even with a note of hope, well, they've been through so much, things will never be the same. My mom cries through the ending. But it's not totally sad; more bittersweet.
And there you have it: some things to look forward to in Crannig Castle. It's available for preorder on kindle right now. Or sign up for the blog tour and get a free ARC. :D