Morgen: Welcome back Jodine. We first met you at the end of June, can you please tell us what you’re up to now?
Jodine: I’m working on bringing out Carry on the Flame: Destiny’s Call Book One, a dark and edgy urban fantasy, paranormal romance. It is already award winning and set to release August 1st – a perfect day as it is the Celtic celebration of Lughnasadh, the festival of the harvest, reaping the fruits of your labors of love. In Carry on the Flame, humanity is in the midst of the greatest crisis in their evolution. Sharay is the one chosen to show the way forward and help humankind move through the fear and dark times of today’s world. Born into a lineage of priestesses in modern day Glastonbury, England, Sharay’s way is blocked by her jealous Aunt Phoebe, who uses black magic against her to steal her fortune and magical power. When Phoebe commits Sharay to a psychiatric ward and accuses her of murder, Sharay struggles with the temptation to fight Phoebe’s vengeance with her own. Through the ancient Celtic ceremony of Beltaine, Sharay experiences profound sacred union with the Welshman Guethyn, who shows her how to open her heart. But Sharay must learn to transform her hatred for her aunt in order to claim the mystery held deep within her cells that will allow her to fulfill her destiny to prove that the ultimate magic is the power of love.
Morgen: Wow… what a plot. 🙂 Do you manage to write every day? What’s the most you’ve written in a day?
Jodine: I don’t write every day. I write most days, and have written eight or more hours a day for days in a row when inspiration comes strongly. I find this quote from Joseph Campbell crucial to the days I write: “You must have a room, or a certain hour or so a day, where you don’t know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes to you. This is a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be. This is the place of creative incubation. At first you may find that nothing happens there. But if you have a sacred place and use it, something eventually will happen.”
Morgen: I’m very lucky, I only share my house with my dog so have the middle bedroom dedicated to my writing. It also backs onto the garden which is a bonus. It’s the finding time to write that I struggle with. 🙂 What are you working on next?
Jodine: Carry on the Flame: Ultimate Magic Book Two is coming out this fall, October 31. It will pick up where Sharay leaves off in Carry on the Flame: Destiny’s Call, and complete Sharay’s story. Both novels are part of the Goddess of the Stars and the Sea series, where each novel is a standalone read (The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis and The Keys to Remember). I’m working on another urban fantasy, paranormal romance. Because of my connection with Glastonbury, it will take place there, of course! Specifically the ancient Glastonbury Abbey. The setting will be both in the present and will also time travel back during the time of the Abbey’s desecration / burning by the King’s forces in medieval England. The history of the Abbey is filled with legend and mystery. Paranormal beings from the fairy race, priestesses, angels, psychics, demons, and every day folk will populate the story.
Morgen: Angels are supposed to be the next big thing after vampires. 🙂 What is your opinion of writer’s block? Do you ever suffer from it? If so, how do you ‘cure’ it?
Jodine: I think there are times when writing is halted. But I’ve come to believe it is part of the process. For me, it usually means I have to personally go through some sort of initiation or experience before I can get to the depth of what I am writing about. For instance, in Carry on the Flame, grief was central to the main character, Sharay’s life. The story starts with her being orphaned at a young age. I found my writing paused for a period of months until I actually dealt with a deep piece of my own grief. It was hard. However, when I was able to return to the writing, my character Sharay and her story were greatly enriched by this.
Morgen: It’s amazing how therapeutic, and sometimes overwhelming, writing can be. Do you plot your stories or do you just get an idea and run with it?
Jodine: Both. In Carry on the Flame I had the idea of where the story was headed, and what would be in store for Sharay, the young priestess from modern day Glastonbury, England. But I let her story lead me. I would get inspirations; some would come through watching people, watching TV, watching life, while other ideas would come during mundane tasks, or right before I fell asleep. A lot of inspiration came in meditations or through visiting Glastonbury’s sacred sites. I created a collage, and I drew a sort of map with all the major plot points and character transformational arcs written down. But, often, I would simply surrender to creativity, keep writing and writing, and I was often surprised where things ended up. I love that freedom and the gems that pop up when I write like that. And sometimes characters who I thought were minor, like Sharay’s wimpy Uncle Larry or the addled old women Sharay encounters in Scotland, ended up showing me they have a lot more to do with the story than I anticipated.
Morgen: “wimpy” and “addled”, I love it. You mentioned freedom, what are your favourite / least favourite aspect of your writing life?
Jodine: I love the whole process. It is a passion. Even the hard parts… the really difficult, throw yourself down on your knees and cry and scream challenges – like the gazillion re-writes an author has to go through to get things just right. The other part I like is getting to explore ways of behaving that I would personally never engage in but my characters certainly do. In Carry on the Flame, Sharay’s Aunt Phoebe has a penchant for using sex to get her way. Phoebe also has a dark side – she conjures a demonic entity to hunt and stalk Sharay and threaten everyone Sharay holds dear.
Morgen: The aunt especially sounds like a fantastic character. Are there any writing-related websites and / or books that you find useful and would recommend?
Jodine: I absolutely adore “Inside Story: The Transformational Arc” by Dara Marks http:///daramarks.com. This is a book that helped me to be laser focused in creating depth to Sharay for example and to show how her experiences helped her grow and change in a way readers can relate to. Because of doing that, Sharay’s response to her vast destiny became more real and visceral. She is not a simple kick ass heroine from the start; she has to work hard to get there. Also, the fated love between Sharay and the Welshman Guethyn has all the messy complexities of both ordinary and extra-ordinary love. And Sharay’s adversary, her greedy Aunt Phoebe, is not a two-dimensional black and white villain, but a person with a pained past that twisted her priestess abilities and turned her into the black sorceress she portrays in the story.
Morgen: There’s Phoebe again. 🙂 Do you have an agent? Do you think they’re vital to an author’s success?
Jodine: I don’t currently have an agent. I think they can be important as some publishing houses won’t accept submissions without them. But I don’t think they are vital. Good books get published without them!
Morgen: They do and I think with eBooks they have a tougher job proving their worth, unless you’re aiming for the mainstream then I think they’re well-placed. Please remind us where can we find out about you?
Jodine: My website is http://www.jodineturner.com.
Morgen: and blog http://visionaryfiction.blogspot.com, Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/JodineTurner, Facebook Author page http://www.facebook.com/JodineTurner.Author, Amazon Author page http://amzn.to/kzfNA7, Goodreads http://bit.ly/k1PPbJ, Jacketflap http://www.jacketflap.com/drjodine, http://bit.ly/l1lVVs. And you also have a new book trailer (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_G3Jst5VHQo). So prolific, I feel tired just looking at this list. And a bit more about your writing?
Jodine: Overview of The Goddess of the Stars and the Sea series: The series is an edgy saga of a young priestess who’s reborn during three different critical junctions in history in order to help humankind move through fearful and bleak times – the demise of Atlantis, the Dark Age’s suppression of the feminine, and today’s turbulent world. The novels are an adventure filled initiatory journey into the Mysteries of the Goddess and carry keys to embodying the ultimate magic – love.
Each novel can stand on its own. First in the series is the highly acclaimed The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis. The second novel is the award winning The Keys to Remember. The third novel in the series, Carry on the Flame: Book One Destiny’s Call,is already award winning and was released this month (August 2011) – http://amzn.to/nswWyl. Carry on the Flame: Book Two Ultimate Magic will be released October 31, 2011.
Morgen: Is there anything else you’d like to mention?
Jodine: What inspired me to write this? When I first read “The Mists of Avalon” by Marion Zimmer Bradley, I became fascinated with Glastonbury, England. I visited Glastonbury several times, and eventually moved there for 13 months. That land and its sacred sites captivated my heart, my soul, and my imagination. I experienced inspiring dreams and waking visions. I studied the folklore and legend, and sacro-magical knowledge. And while there, I began to write my Goddess of the Stars and the Sea series about priestesses who had lived in Glastonbury, the ancient isle of Avalon, throughout history. I have visited the locations readers will find in Carry on the Flame – the coast of Wales and some of its quaint villages like Betws-y-coed, the Orkney Isles of Scotland, and of course Glastonbury. Each locale I visited informed my scene descriptions with firsthand knowledge. And each location imbued my story with its own brand of magic.
Morgen: Thank you Jodine. It’s been lovely catching up with you again.
Jodine Turner is an author of YA / Adult fantasy, magical realism, paranormal romance, and visionary fiction. She is also a therapist, a consecrated priestess, and a deacon in the Gnostic Church of Mary Magdalene. While living in Glastonbury, England, the ancient Isle of Avalon, Jodine began writing the Goddess of the Stars and the Sea series about priestesses who had lived in Glastonbury, the ancient isle of Avalon, throughout history. The novels are an adventure filled initiation into the Mysteries of the Goddess, the divine feminine, divine masculine, and uniting them in your heart. As mentioned above, first in the series, (all novels are standalone reads), is the highly acclaimed The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis. The second novel is the award winning The Keys to Remember. The third novel, Carry on the Flame: Book One Destiny’s Call, is already award winning and will be released August 1, 2011. Carry on the Flame: Book Two Ultimate Magic will be released October 31, 2011
If you are reading this and you write, in whatever genre, and are thinking “ooh, I’d like to do this” then you can… just email me and I’ll send you the information. They do now (January 2013) carry a fee (£10 / €12.50 / $15) for the new interviews on this blog but everything else (see Opportunities on this blog) is free.
If you go for the interview, it’s very simple; I send you a questionnaire (I have them for novelists, short story authors, children’s authors, non-fiction authors, and poets). You complete the questions, and I let you know when it’s going to go live. Before it does so, I add in comments as if we’re chatting, and then they get posted. When that’s done, I email you with the link so you can share it with your corner of the literary world. And if you have a writing-related blog / podcast and would like to interview me… let me know.
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