Hello lovely readers!
I hope you’ve all had a chance to get your claws on Book Nine: Talons of Power! Did you like it? It was so much fun and so complicated to write!
(Book 9 spoilers ahead!)
For one thing, Turtle isn’t like most of the other heroes I’ve written. He would rather not be noticed; he doesn’t even want to save the world if it means everyone will look at him! I spent a lot of time struggling with why his character is like that, until I finally figured out the scene in the prologue (poor little Turtle!).
And then once I knew that about him, of course I wanted to fix him, if I could. I wanted his emotional journey to be about getting to a place where he would risk being seen—even if it meant a big sacrifice—in order to make a difference. In order to save someone he loves.
But it sometimes felt like I was totally dragging him by his tail! Like, Turtle, be a hero already! Save the world! Quit worrying so much and DO SOMETHING! (I’ll admit I have a little bit of Peril and Tsunami in me when I’m bossing my characters around!) :-)
I also knew that this book had to have Moon’s vision of Turtle in it—I planted that vision in Book Six intending for it to come true in Book Nine. I wanted the vision to leave you wondering whether Turtle was going to turn evil (or was already secretly evil). But (as I kind of hoped you would!) a lot of you clever readers guessed that there might be something else going on—that it was actually Anemone who was evil in that scene. (Just one of the reasons I love you all!)
Another thing I had to be careful with in this book is that I couldn’t solve too many of our problems—I had to leave most of it still to do in Book 10. I had this same problem when I was planning Book Four: The Dark Secret. It was time to start pulling together all the threads I flung into the world in Books 1-3, but I couldn’t tie them all up yet, because that’s what Book Five had to do. I think (I hope!) they both worked out to be interesting enough and keep moving forward anyway, but it was definitely a tricky balance!
And then I came to writing Book 10 and realized I had about a MILLION ZILLION things to wrap up! I hope I managed it—and I really hope you all like it! Eeeeeee, I can’t wait for you to read Darkness of Dragons!
(Oooo, can I sneak in a couple of mini-spoilers for Book 10? Nobody tell my editor! ;-)
1. You will see Blaze and Smolder again.
2. You will also see someone you might not have expected to see again . . . or at least, a version of them.
3. My favorite parts to write were these mini-fights between two characters who have previously interacted very little, but who turned out to be really fun, fierce antagonists.
OK, enough torturing you (and my editor!). :-) Do you guys have any questions about Book Nine that I might be able to answer?
Thank you for reading!
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