Today's Darklight On is ... Kim Cleary
Thank you for having me on Darklight On! I’m delighted to be here. Last week I launched Truth Unveiled, the second novel in my Daughter of Ravenswood series and my head is spinning!
I'm often asked where I get my ideas. Usually in the form of a quizzical gaze and a question such as: did you get all that stuff out of your head?
The answer is yes, and no. My head is often bursting with ideas, but often half formed and vaguely understood ones.
While writing, and rewriting, the Daughter of Ravenswood series, I Googled, researched, and pinned a host of interesting material. I spent time (probably longer than I should have) with Ravens, necromancy, oak trees, and the tools of a witches trade, the making of whiskey, gorgeous ruby gems, body decomposition and quite a few other odd things. Google and Pinterest can be very entertaining as well as informative!
When I first started writing the Daughter of Ravenswood series, I didn't know if it would be set in a totally made up world, or a future version of our own world. Both sounded intriguing, both provided significant writing challenges.
I'm not quite enough of a nerd to enjoy creating a whole new world. But if I stuck to my own experience and knowledge, I'd have a very boring book — which is not what any writer is aiming for!
Using this world, with which readers are so familiar, would require a lot of research. As I have chronic fatigue, adding time to writing preparation is something I try and avoid. Like most people I can get lost in Google search, lose hours at a time in Pinterest, and it's best not to mention what happens when I get caught up in an interesting book of the paper variety (whoever invented toasted sandwiches and chips for dinner deserves a big kiss).
After a few half-hearted attempts to build a new world for my story, I decided to stick with our own well known world, but after such a catastrophe it was dramatically changed from today. The setting is vaguely Welsh, certainly northern hemisphere. The impacts of a deadly plague, a few wandering undead and climate change (to name a few!) have significantly affected the way people live. But the reader doesn't need to know all of this detail, just pieces that are relevant to the story.
A key element in this world is magic. Magic and paganism have come to the fore and filled a gap left by the loss of old religions, centralised government and technology. For our heroine, the most important thing is that while witches are relatively commonplace. Witches who can raise the dead, necromancers like herself, are not.
Ghosts feature in this series, and I think will in all my writing. I have my own experiences with ghosts, which I share on my blog, and I love reading and writing about paranormal encounters of all kinds.
Anyway, that’s enough about me! I’d love to hear from you about how you write, and how you incorporate your own experiences into your writing.
Thanks again for having me on Darklight On.
“Betrayed by the one person she thought she could trust for ever, Meagan faces the most powerful necromancer who ever lived, alone.”
Meagan Greystone, a new necromancer who grew up orphaned and homeless, has finally discovered a community where she belongs. But as she settles in at Ravenswood Manor, her ancestral home, a strange voice in her head unravels her newfound peace.
The source of the unsettling communication is Quintus, Meagan’s distant ancestor, known for his brutality and incredible power. When she attempts to enlist her father’s help by raising him from the dead, it’s Quintus who regains a foothold in the land of the living. Now reborn, he vows to obliterate everything Meagan treasures unless she joins him in his quest for power.
Meagan must overcome the heartbreak of unimaginable betrayal and fight in the face of a seemingly hopeless situation. Will she find the strength she needs to defeat the power of darkness and save the people and home she has grown to cherish?
Kim Cleary is the award-winning author of Path Unchosen, the first title in the Daughter of Ravenswood series, which earned a bronze IPPY award in 2015. She grew up in Birmingham, United Kingdom, studied medieval history and psychology at Adelaide University in Southern Australia, and has worked all over Australia and in London.
Forced to leave a successful career in marketing after multiple sclerosis damaged her hands and prevented her from typing, Kim learned how to write using voice software.
A self-described chocoholic, Kim loves writing, gardening, cooking, playing with her dogs, and spending time with friends. She lives with her husband and two dogs, an adorable Cocker Spaniel and a mischievous Moodle, in Melbourne, Australia.