WINTER WAR AWAKENING is the third book in the Blood Rose Rebellion series, and we’re thrilled to have Roselyn Eves with us to chat about it.
Roselyn, what scene was really hard for you to write and why, and is that the one of which you are most proud? Or is there another scene you particularly love?
Winter War Awakening is essentially a war novel, and battle scenes are always hard for me to write, in part because I don’t love reading them. I worked around this by focusing most of the book on the character’s personal journeys, and when I did have to write battle scenes, I kept them tightly focused on the character POV. I think I’m most proud of the final battle scene, because it was hard, and because the characters had to fight and grieve at the same time. I don’t know that it’s my *favorite* scene of the book, but I’m pleased with how it turned out.
What book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book–or visa versa?
Readers who enjoy their fantasy mixed with history, folklore, and monsters would also like Jessica Cluess’s A Shadow Bright and Burning Series, Julie Dao’s Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, Naomi Novik’s Uprooted and Spinning Silver, and Katherine Arden’s Bear and the Nightingale series.
What did this book teach you about writing or about yourself?
Writing a trilogy was harder than I’d expected–not to come up with an idea that would span three books, but to craft each book so that it had a clear arc, so that the characters were growing in different ways in each book and not simply repeating the same character arc of the first book. But it also reminded me that in life, we often learn similar lessons over and over again, but new experiences deepen what we learn (and sometimes complicate what we learn). I had pretty severe anxiety writing the second book, and I think that bleeds over into the third book with a character who’s reluctant at first to take action because all her prior actions have backfired on her. Learning to work through my own fears was really helpful in terms of helping my character work through hers.
What do you hope readers will take away from WINTER WAR AWAKENING?
There’s a Hungarian proverb that my character thinks of often in the book: one swallow does not make a summer. A single soldier can’t win a war, a single person advocating for change can’t change everything. But people working together have tremendous power.
How long or hard was your road to publication? How many books did you write before this one, and how many never got published?
I feel like my story is a middle-of-the-road story. I wrote a lot as a teen (probably 3-4 books) and then stopped until after graduate school. By then, I had two small kids, and it took me probably 5 years or so of writing seriously for publication and a queried book that didn’t go anywhere to get an agent. I got lucky–my book trilogy went out just when fantasy was hitting a peak, and it sold relatively quickly to Knopf. I think the market for fantasy is harder now.
What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
Write because you love to write. If you’re writing for any other reason (fame, bragging rights, money), that won’t be enough to compensate for how hard publishing can be. There’s a lot that’s outside of your control–beyond a certain level of craft, so much of selling your book can be a matter of timing in terms of market and editor interest, so many other factors. Some good books don’t get picked up for publication, for lots of reasons. Some books that do get published don’t sell very well. All you can really control is the words you set on the page and the joy that comes from creation. Enjoy the creation, find yourself a community that will celebrate that creation with you, and keep working.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on a YA historical set in the American West around the 1878 solar eclipse.
ABOUT THE BOOK
The Binding is broken. Mátyás is alive. And Anna Arden is on the run.
It seems, yet again, that breaking the Binding has shattered the world. And the only hope of mending it is Anna and Mátyás, working together. But it’s never that simple, is it? The praetheria, the creatures once held captive by the spell, are now waging war against the Austro-Hungarian empire. And they are holding Noémi hostage–using her life to manipulate Anna and Mátyás, like marionettes on a string.
Gábor has elected to stay behind, to fight in the Hungarian army’s resistance, while Anna and Mátyás search for their beloved Noémi–a mission doomed from the start, cloaked in praetherian magic. Magic that relies on illusion and misdirection. Eventually, there’s only one way to save her: to split up. And to walk right into the lion’s den.
When everyone thinks they’re fighting each other for the same thing–freedom–can anyone truly win?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Rosalyn Eves grew up in the Rocky Mountains, dividing her time between reading books and bossing her siblings into performing her dramatic scripts. As an adult, the telling and reading of stories is still one of her favorite things to do. When she’s not reading or writing, she enjoys spending time with her chemistry professor husband and three children, watching British period pieces, or hiking through the splendid landscape of southern Utah, where she lives. She dislikes housework on principle.
She has a PhD in English from Penn State, which means she also endeavors to inspire college students with a love for the English language. Sometimes it even works.
Have you had a chance to read WINTER WAR AWAKENING yet? Do you work through your own fears with your writing? Do you enjoy the creation? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!
Jocelyn, Halli, Martina, Erin, Shelly, and Kelly