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Please introduce yourself, who are you and what do you do?
Aside from being a self-published author, I am also a dedicated wife and mother, and a proud geek living in the state of Minnesota. I greatly enjoy science fiction, fantasy, gaming (of the video, board, and tabletop variety), as well as comic books. Even when I'm not toiling away on my laptop, my brain is always at work developing characters and plotting out future scenes for my books. Thankfully, we live in the age of technology so I'm able to easily transcribe those thoughts so long as I have my phone with me (a definite plus for a stay-at-home mom of a very active two year old).
What first inspired you to start writing?
I started writing fourteen years ago during the creative writing class I took during my Senior year of high school. The class was originally supposed to serve as an easy filler class for me since the science class I had signed up to take was cancelled due to not enough students signing up for it. However, it did not take long before my imagination began running wild, and the class became so much more to me than a last minute, filler. The more involved I became with the class, the clearer it became to me that writing was what I ultimately wanted to do with my life.
Where did the idea for the Dragon Guardian series come from?
The idea for 'Dragon Guardian: Fire' specifically came to me fourteen years ago during my creative writing class. Instead of turning in a new clutch of poems or a new short story every week, I asked my teacher if it would be alright for me to instead write a fantasy novel, and turn in a new chapter each week. My teacher agreed quite enthusiastically, and I thusly began planning my very first draft of what would years later become 'Dragon Guardian: Fire'.
I knew right off the bat that I wanted my story to have a strong fantasy element to it, because I felt that it would truly allow my imagination to take flight. In the world of fantasy, almost anything is possible, and I knew that I would be free to truly create a rich world filled with complicated and unique characters. All that was needed was a heroine to pull everything together, and that was when the sassy redhead that is Marin Draconya began taking form within my mind.
Which influences had been instrumental in your writing?
Ultimately, my very first influence was my father. One of my fondest memories from my childhood revolves around my father reading 'The Hobbit' aloud to me when I was little. He would read a chapter to me every night, and he would give different voices for the characters. It was in those early years that I developed a love for all things fantasy, and why Tolkien will always have a special place in my heart.
However, as I've grown older and explored different authors, I found myself feeling influenced by R.A. Salvatore as well as David Gaider, because I simply adore the way they seamlessly blend humor into an otherwise dramatic scene. Angst, drama and action are what drive a story forward, but for me, humor is vital to keeping the reader engaged and willing to keep turning the pages. Humor is what gives readers that glimmer of light in an otherwise hopeless situation, and both Salvatore and Gaider have given me good guidelines to follow.
What is your favourite word?
Tintinnabulation. It's not a word that you hear all that often, and yet it's incredibly fun to say.
What about your book makes it stand out from others in the genre?
My heroine, Marin Draconya, is the most unlikely and least girly princess you will ever meet. Trained to be a warrior by her father, she abhors dresses and standing on ceremony. She feels naked without a sword in her hand, and yet for all her skills and confidence, she is incredibly awkward in social situations and has more than her share of klutzy moments. She is stubborn, her curiosity often gets the better of her, and she frequently makes mistakes and has to deal with the fallout of them. Nothing is wiped clean. Basically, I wanted to create a heroine who was relatable to anyone (male or female) who might be reading the book. In spite of being a half-elf, Marin is a very "human" character with fears, desires and insecurities. She is not impervious or perfect by any means.
What was the last book you read?
Bossypants by Tina Fey.
What are you working on at the moment?
Currently, I am working on 'Dragon Guardian: Water', the second book in my Dragon Guardian series. Thankfully, unlike 'Dragon Guardian: Fire', it won't take fourteen years for me to write it!
Tell us about your latest release and how we can find out more.
'Dragon Guardian: Fire' is the first novel in my Dragon Guardian series which at its core will be comprised of four books (I am toying with the idea of expanding upon the series by writing a prequel which focuses upon characters that were only referenced to by name, but that's a while down the road so I have plenty of time to think about it). After fourteen years of tweaks, rewrites, and rejections from publishers, I decided to take matters into my own hands this year and self-publish my work.
'Dragon Guardian: Fire' introduces the reader to the world of Primordya that suffers under the tyrannical rule of Nahga--queen of the dark elves. It falls to the deposed Princess Marin Draconya, the intrepid heroine and last remaining heir to the throne, to restore peace to the war-torn, tumultuous land that was once ruled by her father.
You can find out more about 'Dragon Guardian: Fire', the world of Primordya, as well as my current progress on 'Dragon Guardian: Water' by visiting my website:http://bookfairy1216.wix.com/aida-jacobs