Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Winter King by C.L. Wilson‏

C. L. WILSON grew up camping and waterskiing across America, from Cherry Creek reservoir in Denver, CO, to Lake Gaston on the border of Virginia and North Carolina, to Georgia’s Lake Lanier and Lake Allatoona. When she wasn’t waterskiing and camping on family vacations, you could usually find her with a book in one hand and a sketch pad in the other—either reading, writing stories, or drawing. Sometime around the ninth grade, she decided she was better at drawing her pictures with words than paints and charcoals, and she set aside her sketchpad to focus entirely on writing.

Wilson is active in Tampa Area Romance Authors (TARA), her local chapter of Romance Writers of America. When not engaged in writerly pursuits, she enjoys golfing, swimming, reading, playing video games with her children, and spending time with her friends and family. She is also an avid collector (her husband says pack rat!), and she’s the proud owner of an extensive collection of Dept. 56 Dickens and North Pole villages, unicorns, Lladro figurines, and mint condition comic books.

Wilson currently resides with her husband, their three wonderful children, and their little black cat, Oreo, in a secluded ranch community less than thirty miles away from the crystalline waters and sugar-sand beaches of Anna Maria Island and Siesta Key on Florida’s gulf coast.

Wynter Atrialan, the Winter King, once lived in peace with his southern, Summerlander neighbors, but when Falcon, the prince of Summerlea, stole Wynter’s bride and murdered his young brother, Wynter vows vengeance. Calling upon a dangerous Wintercraig magic called the Ice Heart, he gathers his armies and marches against Summerlea, crushing their armies and spreading icy winter in his wake.

After three long, bitter years of battle, Summerlea is defeated and Wynter comes to the heart of the kingdom to issue his terms for their surrender. The prince of Summerlea stole Wynter’s bride and slew Wynter’s Heir. He wants the loss replaced. The Ice Heart is consuming him. Wynter hopes holding his own child in his arms will rekindle the warmth of love and melt the Ice Heart before he becomes the monster of Wintercraig legend, the Ice King.

The Summer King has three very precious daughters whom he loves dearly. Wynter will take one of them to wife. She will have one year to provide him with an Heir. If she fails, he will turn her out in the ice and snow of the mountains and claim another princess for his wife. And so it will continue until Wynter has his Heir or the Summer King is out of daughters. All the while, Wynter will enjoy the vengeance of knowing the Summer King will suffer each day without his beloved daughter(s), as Wynter suffers each day without his own beloved brother.

The plan is perfect—except for one small detail. The Summer King has a fourth daughter. One of which he is not so fond.

Blamed as a child for the death of her beloved mother, Khamsin Coruscate, the forgotten princess of Summerlea, has spent her life hidden from the world like an embarrassing secret. Dressed in cast-off gowns and left to her own devices, with only the determination of her loyal nursemaid to ensure she receives the education befitting an Heir to the Summer Throne, Khamsin haunts the abandoned towers and gardens of Summerlea’s royal palace, close to her beloved late mother’s treasures, and waits for the day her father will recognize her as a Princess of the Rose. But though she dreams of the valor and sacrifices of ancient Summerlea heroes and pines for paternal love that will never come, Khamsin is no sweet, gentle, helpless princess-in-a-tower. She is a fiercely passionate creature with a volatile, rebellious temper that is often as reckless and destructive as the dangerous forces of her weathergift, the power of storms.

Together will their stormy personalities be able to meld or will their powers destroy not only their love but the whole world?

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Q) What inspired you to write this story?
THE WINTER KING was actually originally plotted for a friend of mine at one of our annual plotting sessions. She doesn’t write fantasy however, and once we started talking about it, because the characters had gotten into my head and wouldn’t leave me alone. I started dreaming about them, which is always a Big Sign for me. I knew I had to write the story. I finally called my friend and begged her to let me write it instead. It came out quite a bit different from what we originally plotted, but I love it.

Q) How long did it take you to write?
Well, a lot longer than I anticipated. I started THE WINTER KING before I sold my Tairen Soul novels, but only got about 100 or so pages in. Then I picked it back up again five years later after concluding the Tairen Soul series. I worked on it for probably another year before turning it in.

Q) What is your favorite thing about writing?
Having written! Honestly, that’s really it. I love when a story comes together, and I go back and read it, and want to re-read it. I love when I find books by other authors that are “keepers” and I love having written books that I still enjoy reading and re-reading once I’m done. (And considering the amount of time, and the number of revisions I do on every book—I always get to the “This book is crap! I hate it!” stage at some point during the process—wanting to read it again after all that is a big thing for me.)

Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing?
Getting stuck. It happens to me a lot, and it make me pull my hair out.

I’m not one of those writers who can just sit down and churn out 10-20 pages a day or more. Getting 5 pages a day is pretty great for me. So when I get stuck, I start falling behind my writing goals pretty quickly.

Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why?
I would be an astronaut working on the international space station. Going into space has always been a dream of mine.

If that’s not famous enough, then, hmm, I would pick Scarlett Johansen. It would be fun to be a gorgeous, famous actress for a day. J

Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it?
Ha! I’m afraid to look! I’ve been known to grow science experiments. I have no doubt there are jars of things in there that are several years old.

Q) What can readers expect from you in the future?
Well, I’m currently working on the next Mystral novel, THE SEA KING, and then I go back to the Fading Lands (the world of my Tairen Soul series) to write Belliard vel Jelani’s book.

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