STOLEN SONGBIRD by Danielle L Jensen will be out on April 1st from Strange Chemistry, and Danielle stopped by to talk about the new book, and more! Please welcome Danielle to the blog!
Also, courtesy of the lovely folks at Strange Chemistry have offered up a copy of STOLEN SONGBIRD to one lucky winner, and it’s INTERNATIONAL, so be sure to check out the details at the bottom of the post!
Congrats on the new book! Will you tell us a little about Stolen Songbird and what inspired you to write it?
Thank you! Stolen Songbird is about a girl named Cécile who gets kidnapped by trolls to break the curse that has imprisoned them under a mountain for five centuries. You’d think she’d be all about escaping that situation, but instead she joins a revolution to help the half-bloods who are enslaved by the full-blooded trolls. A revolution that is secretly led by the enigmatic crown prince. It’s full of magic, intrigue, strange creatures, and a healthy dose of romance, so if that’s your thing, get yourself a copy April 1st!
The inspiration for the novel was a dream I had about a city that was buried by rubble. Normally my ideas for novels begin with characters and situations, but in this case, the setting came first.
You have degrees in Finance and English Lit, but didn’t start writing until a few years ago. What was one of the first things you can remember writing?
I started laughing the second I read this question. So, my first attempt to write a novel happened when I was 25 and working in corporate finance. A coworker of mine suggested we try writing a romance, which I thought was a brilliant idea. However, contrary to what my resume says, I’m not a team player, and I set off to do it secretly on my own. It was a romantic thriller involving a plane crash on a deserted island where the MC and her love interest were the only survivors. It was SO BAD. A few years ago I deleted the file, because the idea of anyone ever finding it was just too much to risk. Now I sort of wish I’d kept it for its comedic value.
What did you enjoy most about writing your heroine, Cécile de Troyes, and why do you think readers will connect with her?
I think readers connect with her because she’s a normal girl who finds herself in an extraordinary situation. Trollus and its inhabitants are quite fantastical, but Cécile, in my opinion, is very real. I hope readers will find it very easy to imagine themselves in her shoes.
A lot of folks assume that the main character is an author’s favorite to write, but was there someone in Stolen Songbird that you particularly enjoyed writing about?
I actually find Cécile very difficult to write, so not her! I’d have to say I like writing scenes with Marc in them the best, mostly because of how good his heart is in the face of all the tragedy he’s suffered. From what I’ve heard, he’s pretty much everyone’s favourite character. I’ve been thinking a bit about writing a novella about him. I’ll have to take a poll after the release day to see if there is interest 😉
What made you decide to write a book for a young adult audience?
I felt that the YA world was more interested in reading the types of fantasy novels I wanted to write than the adult world.
If you could experience one book again for the very first time, which one would it be?
I’d say The Hobbit, because I experienced it at such a young age – my dad read it to me when I was in grade 1. I remember being absolutely captivated by it, and I’d be curious to see if it still affected me in the same way as an adult.
Worldbuilding is very important, especially in fantasy. What are a few of your favorite literary “worlds”?
After my dad read me The Hobbit, we moved onto all of David Eddings’ series, so they have a special place in my heart. When I was a teenager, my favourite world was Anne McCaffrey’s Pern, followed by the Dragonlance universe. Recently, the world that has most impressed me has been Peter Brett’s Demon Cycle.
What are you currently reading?
I am currently reading The Promise of Amazing by Robin Constantine, and I am very much enjoying it. I’m out of town at the moment, but I have a box of books arriving soon from Amazon, most of which are by 2014 debut authors.
What are a few things you learned from your journey to publication, and what advice would you give to an aspiring author?
The one thing you have complete control over is how you grow as a writer. No one starts out amazing. No first draft is perfect. Like any trade, sport, or skill, you have to work hard to become accomplished. Set aside your ego, and work at improving your craft.
After that, be tenacious.
What’s next for you?
I need to finish the sequel to Stolen Songbird, because my deadline is looming! I’ve got an unrelated project lurking in the wings, but The Malediction Trilogyis my first priority.
Wanna win a copy of STOLEN SONGBIRD?
2.) Giveaway is for 1 copy of STOLEN SONGBIRD by Danielle L Jensen to 1 winner
3.) Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY
4.) You must enter on or before 3/15/14
5.) Giveaway book courtesy of Strange Chemistry
6.) Please see my Giveaway Policy.
About Danielle L Jensen:
Danielle was born and raised in Calgary, Canada. At the insistence of the left side of her brain, she graduated in 2003 from the University of Calgary with a bachelor’s degree in finance. But the right side of her brain has ever been mutinous; and in 2010, it sent her back to school to complete an entirely impractical English literature degree at Mount Royal University and to pursue publication. Much to her satisfaction, the right side shows no sign of relinquishing its domination.
About STOLEN SONGBIRD:
For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the ruins of Forsaken Mountain. Time enough for their dark and nefarious magic to fade from human memory and into myth. But a prophesy has been spoken of a union with the power to set the trolls free, and when Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she learns there is far more to the myth of the trolls than she could have imagined.
Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus: escape. Only the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.
But something unexpected happens while she’s waiting – she begins to fall for the enigmatic troll prince to whom she has been bonded and married. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods – part troll, part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.
As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer’s daughter. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch with magic powerful enough to change Trollus forever.