Morgan has kindly offered a wonderful giveaway along with this interview, so be certain to check below how to enter your name. But in the meanwhile, let's get to know the authoress herself!
Morgan L. Busse writes speculative fiction for the adult market. She is the author of Daughter of Light and Son of Truth, the first two books in a series from Marcher Lord Press. Morgan lives in the Midwest with her husband and four children. You can find out more about Morgan at www.morganlbusse.com.
Would you mind telling us a little about yourself? Hobbies, personality . . . tea or coffee?
Morgan: I am married to a wonderful man and together we have four children (including a set of twins). He is a pastor, so between ministry and family, our lives are very busy.
I love rainy days, the ocean, trees, and mountains. So that’s why I live in Kansas! At least there are some amazing thunderstorms here. And the people are wonderful.
Along with writing, I love to bike, listen to music, and dabble in art. I also enjoy playing games with my family, both board games and video games. Now that my children are older, we all play together.
Tea or coffee? Definitely tea! I drink coffee for that “kick in the pants” in the morning, but tea is for relaxing and enjoying a nice, calm moment. You will generally find all sorts of tea in my cupboards.
What led you into the writing life? Were you always a storyteller?
Morgan: I have always been a storyteller. As a kid, I would write plays and perform them for my family (using my stuffed animals as the actors). But I never thought I would be a writer. I was more of a math/science geek in school. It was my husband who encouraged me to write. I kept telling him no until on a trip to Seattle, I had this idea of a woman who—with a touch of her hand—could see inside the soul. As soon as we arrived home, I started writing.
Tell us a little about your series! What led you to start writing Daughter of Light? Will there be more than one sequel?
Morgan: When my husband first started seminary, I had nothing to do. So I visited the local library and starting making my way through their fantasy and science fiction shelves. I love anything speculative! But I slowly grew tired of the antagonistic view many of the books had toward God. So I visited a Christian bookstore one day to see if there were any speculative books. The lady gave me a strange look and pointed to a lone Frank Peretti book on the bottom shelf.
That’s it? I like Frank Peretti and had already read that particular book. But where were the other books? I went home disappointed. That’s when my husband said I should write. No way! But like I said, a couple months later on a trip to Seattle, I saw Rowen in my mind for the first time and knew I had to write her story.
Daughter of Light is the first book in the Follower of the Word series. The story centers around Rowen, a young woman who has the ability to heal by taking on the wound or disease of another and can see inside the human soul with a touch of her hand.
Now tell us a little about Son of Truth. How long have you been work on it? Did it present any unusual challenges compared to Daughter of Light?
Morgan: Son of Truth is the second book in the series. In Daughter of Light, the reader meets an assassin named Caleb. He is a dark and complex character. The book ends with him coming to terms with who he is and what he has done.
While I looked for a publisher for Daughter of Light, I worked on Son of Truth. With children still home, it took me about a year to write. The nice thing is I had the rough draft done by the time Daughter of Light sold.
The biggest challenge in writing Son of Truth was keeping Caleb’s nature consistent with who he was, even with the life-altering event that happens to him. He is still a “get the job” done kind of man, a calculating man, a passionate man. My editor helped me keep Caleb’s personality intact while navigating his new nature.
Can you pick a favorite character from this new novel?
Morgan: Definitely the assassin Caleb. I shared above what it was like writing his character. But I also like Nierne, the scribe. Her character and personality come out more in Son of Truth. For those of you who have not yet read Daughter of Light, Nierne is a scribe who escapes the devastation of her city in search for the one race of people with the power to save her country.
Nierne is a very religious young woman who clings to her position in the Monastery. But life has a way of testing faith, and she finds her faith shattered in Son of Truth and she’s not sure if she can ever go back to trusting the Word again.
What inspires your work? Where do you turn when you need a renewal of inspiration?
Morgan: I love music. Many of the scenes or ideas come from listening to a piece of music. Each of my characters has a flavor of music, so when I really need to dive deep into their psyche, I turn on that particular kind of music.
I also love nature and traveling. For example: I based the country of Avonai, a coastal country, on my time spent on the Oregon coast. Anytime I run across an interesting place, I take time to smell, hear, and feel what it is like so I can use it in my book.
What are your favorite and least favorite parts of the writing process?
Morgan: I hate writing rough drafts. I see all the mistakes and places where I need to beef up the description or tighten the scene or dive deeper emotionally, but if I stop, I will never finish. So I press on and finish a rough draft. Then I go back and smooth out each scene.
That is the part I love: the rewrites. They are my carrot to finish the rough draft!
If you were forced to pick a single favorite author, who would it be?
Morgan: Oh, you are cruel! Just one? Hmm, I would have to choose J.R.R. Tolkien. The Hobbit was the first fantasy I was exposed to. Then I had to read Lord of the Rings and then The Silmarilion. I loved how he used old Norse and Celtic myth in his work and the complexity of his stories.
What are you actively writing right now?
Morgan: I am now working on sequel to Daughter of Light and Son of Truth. I am a plotter, so I already have the book plotted out, so now I am working on the rough draft. So those of you who are anxiously awaiting the conclusion to the Follower of the Word series, it is coming!
I plot out my books a couple years in advance and so I am also working on a completely new series, based in a Victorian steampunk world with dark overtones.
Can you share a short snippet from Son of Truth?
Morgan: Here is a piece I did for a friend that takes a look at Caleb’s thoughts about who he is:
Son of Truth
I am cold. Ruthless. I always get the job done.
I am the left hand of the Lord of Temanin. I have murdered countless, doing away with those who would obstruct the Empire. I live in the shadows, and I am never found.
I heard of the Eldarans, words spoken on my mother’s deathbed. A race of beings left in the Lands to protect mankind. Her words I dismissed as the ramblings of a dying woman. There were no such beings. Only myth, or distant legend.
Yet now I stand before one.
The woman’s hand glows as if she were holding a sliver of sunlight. I see the light, and I fear it. My mother’s words haunt me. I know the moment the woman touches me, I will be undone.
I cannot run, I cannot move. Her hand touches my cheek and fire sears my soul.
Everything I have done plays before my eyes: the women I have used, the lies I have spoken, the way I abused others, my disdain and arrogance.
And the deaths. All those deaths.
I feel her horror as she watches every act of murder. I try to hide what I have done, pull my past back into the shadows. But I cannot. It is now laid bare in the light.
The woman disappears. All is silent. I look at my hands. They are covered in blood. I try to wipe away the evidence of my darkness, but the blood remains.
A shadow appears before me. I look up. A deformed and scarred man stands there. He looks upon me with dark and fathomless eyes. This is no ordinary man. He is more. And he is here to deal with the blood on my hands.
He is my judge.
I bow, my heart full of fear. The time of my reckoning has come.
And I know it will cost me my life.
Morgan: Thank you, Anne, Elisabeth, for allowing me to be a guest on your blog!
Thank you for coming, Morgan. It was a delight to get to know you and your work a little better.
So what do you think, readers? Doesn't that sound like a fabulous series? Are you eager to get your hands on it???
Well, you certianly can. Morgan has graciously offered copies of both books to one lucky winner of this giveaway! You can either have them in hardcopy or ebooks. Be certain to enter your name below for a chance to win.
You can also visit Morgan's website.
Or purchase the books for yourself here.
Be certian to thank Morgan for her time today! I am excited to read this series, and I hope you are now too!
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