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move from one set of books to the next and I think there are several factors at play (besides of course The Muse who I credit for all my creativity).
For the ancient Egyptian novels, I do tons of research, which undergirds all my stories set there, even though I do take some anachronistic liberties. I think, however, because my starting point is a culture so different from ours, and my going-in assumption is that the gods are ‘real’ and do play a part in every day events, I fell into a use of language and a frame of reference that lends itself to a “you are there” feeling for the readers. My characters can’t refer to anything that didn’t exist more than 3000 years ago – no computer-based terms like data or off the grid, no items “as hard as steel”, no borrowed French words (I love faux but not for these novels) and their way of looking at life was so different from ours, especially with their complete faith in an Afterlife lived exactly as life on earth was lived, only better if you took worldly goods into the tomb with you. I’ve read translations of poems, songs and official records from the period so I’m familiar with terms they did use.
For the scifi romance, I just let the writing and the story telling rip and put adventures out there. I don’t explain the blasters or the spaceships any mre than you explain your microwave to yourself. I invent the desired surroundings, be it a space ship or an alien planet and I put my main characters into jeopardy and step back to see how it all works out. (I’m a seat of the pants writer, no outlines.)
I have created an extensive galactic world for my novels, called The Sectors, with additional details as needed, and I’ve got a standard interstellar luxury cruise liner and other elements that reoccur. There’s an interstellar crime syndicate and an opposing crime fighting unit, mysterious elder aliens, an alien goddess ruling over a Brotherhood of bodyguard/assassins…rock stars, fashion designers and of course my Special Forces warfighters. Certain characters may pop up repeatedly from time to time, but the books are pretty much standalone.
creative exercise of switching back and forth and it’s refreshing to me to tell such different tales.
Juli and Steve must find the rock, hang onto it and transport it to the planet’s surface, before the alien idol’s curse turns deadly. The attraction between the two of them grows as the threat to Juli becomes more and more focused. Can she carry out her task while he keeps her safe from the alien curse? Will the capricious alien idol bring them good fortune…or disaster?
Why is the ruler of the city lying to Pharaoh about Kamin’s death? What is the woman covering up? And where is Kamin?
Time for Nima the elegant lady to vanish from Thebes and Nima the skilled dancer to make her way in disguise to the far distant province and fight for Kamin’s life. She’ll have to deal with angry gods, black magic, an enemy prince and a deadly ghost along the way.
Nima is the only one who can rescue her beloved from the dark fate planned for him by Egypt’s enemies…
others. More or less content, she’s made peace with the hard facts of her life. Romance, marriage, a family – all beyond her dreams any longer.
The situation is hopeless…or is it? For the king declares the city will celebrate Winter Solstice and hold a ball, where wishes and dreams just might come true.
Note: All book covers from Fiona Jayde
This article was originally posted on SFF Seven