Hello my Freaky Darlings,
“Where did you get the inspiration for you novel?”
This is the question nearly all authors have learnt to dread by the time they’ve notched up the second book in their series. I’ve also come to the conclusion that this is the question readers will never tire of hearing the answer.
I laugh nervously at this point and try to look for creative ways to avoid the question, but today I’m feeling magnanimous, and I’ve had some really good coffee, so I’ll touch on the subject of what inspired me to write Inkarna, and offer a little glimpse into the creative process that went into the creation of my most recent release.
In short, Inkarna is the story of a little old lady who’s a member of an ancient Egyptian reincarnation cult who returns in the wrong body. Many high jinks ensue, some hilarious, some raaather uncomfortable and some quite poignant. I mean, really, it doesn’t get more devious than putting a 90-year-old Victorian lady in the body of a rather nommilicious 21-year-old metal head with a troubled past. Add a few Jedi mind tricks, an angry ghost and devastating secret my protagonist wasn’t aware she/he had to protect, and we’ve got a recipe for loads of action.
Suffice to say, I had a total blast writing a novel that took quite a few of my readers outside of their comfort zone when it came to asking a few rather pointed questions about gender identity. Yes. That was my intention.
The initial spark for the novel came to me as a dream in which I inhabited the body of a very tall, muscled man, and I walked through a crowd, unused to the way my body functioned. What struck me also was the way folks got out of my way when I was a man, as opposed to as a woman, when fighting the wrong way through a crowd can be quite a challenge.
Naturally the dream got my “what if” buttons flashing.
The next factoid was that I didn’t want to write yet another vampire or werewolf novel. I’ve got a long and abiding love of Egypt, and tapped into the ancient Egyptian conception of life after death when I created my magical race of beings known as Inkarna. While vampires face eternity in the same body, my Inkarna face eternity by hijacking a succession of bodies. Kill a vampire and he won’t be coming back to bite you in the ass, but piss off an Inkarna, and if you’re around long enough, he’ll keeping returning to wreak vengeance.
Naturally, this premise lends itself to endless variations, and humankind’s history offers enough raw material and then some. My selling point when people ask about this book: if you’re in the mood to try a supernatural thriller that offers a different reading experience that is set in South Africa, then Inkarna will have you turning those pages. Only reader complaints I’ve received so far was that the novel was a serious distraction from real life. Children’s supper wasn’t cooked on time, goats were milked late … (no really) … so read when you’re prepared to forget, for a few hours, that the “real” world exists. If Supernatural meets Indiana Jones sounds like your cup of Earl Grey tea, then give Inkarna a shot.