Monday, January 21, 2013

Interview: Starflower by Anne Elisabeth Stengl

Starflower by Anne Elisabeth Stengl
The Black Dogs Are on the Hunt, But Who Is Their Prey?
When a cursed dragon-witch kidnaps fairest Lady Gleamdren, the Bard Eanrin sets boldly forth on a rescue mission... and a race against his rival for Gleamdren's favor. Intent upon his quest, the last thing the immortal Faerie needs is to become mixed up with the troubles of an insignificant mortal.
But when he stumbles upon a maiden trapped in an enchanted sleep, he cannot leave her alone in the dangerous Wood Between. One waking kiss later, Eanrin suddenly finds his story entangled with that of young Starflower. A strange link exists between this mortal girl and the dragon-witch. Will Starflower prove the key to Lady Gleamdren's rescue? Or will the dark power from which she flees destroy both her and her rescuer?
The book blast will take place on January 15th and be for a $50 Amazon Gift Card

The tour will run from January 16th to 25th

Starflower is a clean fantasy published by Bethany House Publishers. You can read more about it here:

interview with Blkosiner's Book Blog

--How did you get the idea for the story?

Each of my novels explores classic fairy tale themes: "Princess and Dragon," "Hunting the Monster," "Prophetic Sacrifice." With Starflower, I wanted to explore the classic theme of "Maiden and Wolf" and see where it would take me. Of course, as with all of my novels, it exploded into so much more than I ever expected! But at the core, the "Maiden and Wolf" theme remains true and frighteningly strong.

--Which character would you most/least like to have dinner with?
I think Poet Eanrin is the answer to both sides of that question. He is so delightfully arrogant and snide, I believe I would either completely love or completely hate him if I met him in person . . . all depending on my mood. Either way, he would leave a strong impression and the night would be a memorable one!

--Do you have any other works in progress? Any teasers or release dates?
I do indeed! Book 5 in the Tales of Goldstone Wood, Dragonwitch, is due to release July 1, 2013. Here is the description:

Submissive to her father's will, Lady Leta of Aiven travels far to meet a prospective husband she neither knows nor loves--Lord Alistair, future king of the North Country.

But within the walls of Gaheris Castle, all is not right. Vicious night terrors plague Lord Alistair to the brink of insanity. Whispers rise from the family crypt. The reclusive castle Chronicler, Leta's tutor and friend, possesses a secret so dangerous it could cost his life and topple the North Country into civil war.

And far away in a hidden kingdom, a fire burns atop the Temple of the Sacred Flame. Acolytes and priestesses serve their goddess to the limits of their lives and deaths. No one is safe while the Dragonwitch searches for the sword that slew her twice...and for the one person who can wield it.

You can learn more about it here: And keep watching that page for more sneak peeks to come!

--What book(s) is your book’s “cousin”? (Similar set-up or style)
Hmmm, that's tough. Some people have compared Starflower to C.S. Lewis's Till We Have Faces. But that's a bit of a stretch, I think. I would personally compare it to a combination of Diana Wynne Jones's Howl's Moving Castle and Robin McKinley's Rose Daughter. But that's more for style than for actual story set-up. It's really quite its own thing! There are shades of George MacDonald and Megan Whalen Turner in places, and maybe a little dash of Sir Terry Pratchett . . . .

--What are some of your favorite books? Do you still have much time to read?
I adore Sir Terry Pratchett's Disc World novels. They are my go-to reads during the crux of crazy deadline season. I'll pick up anything by Diana Wynne Jones if I am feeling blue, because she is sure to cheer me. I love Robin McKinley's retold fairy tales and Megan Whalen Turner's Queen's Thief series. There are many others, but those are the first to leap to mind!

I try to make time to read, but right now it's only happening for a few minutes before bed each evening. During deadline season, if I hit the dread Writer's Block, I will stop writing and read for pleasure, reminding myself why I bother to write at all. A good healthy dose of great writing is a big encouragement to me. But it is a struggle to find time to read otherwise! I believe the best writers should read as much as they write, however, so I really do try to make time for it.

--If a fairy godmother told you could be put into the world of your favorite book for 24 hours, which book would you pick and why?

I would probably pick C.S. Lewis's Narnia. For sheer joy and beauty, you can't beat the world of Narnia! I'd go feasting and holidaying at Cair Paravel by the sea, swimming with mermaids, dancing with fauns, and watching the stars with centaurs. Sigh . . . Where is that fairy godmother of mine?

--Do you need anything to write (music, coffee, etc)? Are there any songs on your playlist- songs that inspired you or that were playing while you wrote?

cannot write with music playing. Once in a blue moon, I can very, very, very softly play instrumental classical music, but if there are any lyrics, I will become completely distracted. However, I do need my mug of tea when I write! Good, dark, Ceylon tea with cream and sugar . . . and I had the good fortune of marrying the most gorgeous Sri Lankan gentleman in the world, so I am blessed with a steady supply of Ceylon teas. If I am struggling with Writer's Block, I'll often brew myself a huge mug and say, "You only have to write till the tea is gone!" Usually that's enough to get me back into the groove. Not always. But usually.

Random songs sometimes inspire my work while I'm drafting. I can't listen to them while I write, but they'll keep coming to mind while I'm composing. For instance, when I wrote Moonblood, the song "Ten Years from Now," by Rev Theory kept coming to mind. I don't even usually listen to that style of music, but the story of the song was so similar to the story of my hero.

--Besides writing, what do you like to do in your free time?

I used to be an art teacher, and I still enjoy drawing and painting now and then, particularly illustrations to go along with my work. You can see an illustration I did for Starflower here:

I love to play the piano and occasionally sing jazz standards for wedding receptions. I am an aspiring pastry chef, and I love making tarts, pies, meat pasties, etc. for my pastry-loving husband. All with my own from-scratch crusts, mind you!

 My very favorite hobby, however, is cat rescue. I work with a local rescue organization, Paw Prints Animal Rescue, and I take in wild kittens and accustom them to house-cat living. Then I place them in loving homes! I currently have three foster kitties looking for their forever families, plus we have four cats and a dog of our own. It gets quite hairy around here! But we do love our fur-babies.

--What is one thing you would tell your 15 year old self?
"Don't worry, sweetheart. It gets better. And you know those stories you're plunking away on? Someday they're really going to matter!"

"And, by the by, bangs aren't doing it for you. Just saying."

--Is there anything else you want to add or say to your readers?

I love to hear from my readers! So please do come join me on my blog: We always have fun contests or blog events going there, so it's a great time!

Also, like me on facebook to keep abreast of all the various Goldstone Wood doings. I'm on Twitter too, but I'm still pretty new there, so bear with me.

And I hope you'll all have a chance to pick up the Tales of Goldstone Wood!

Lightning round: this or that?

Vanilla or chocolate?


Edward or Jacob?

Neither. Go Humans!!!

Hockey or soccer?

Soccer . . . except my husband calls it "football." So "football."

Ebook or paper?


Salty or sweet?


Beach or mountains?

Beach . . . but only because I haven't really tried mountains yet.

Phone call or email?

Email. I'm shy.

Early bird or night owl?
Early bird by preference. Night owl by marriage.

Dog or cat?

Cat . . . but I do love my doggie too.

Messy or neat?

Neat, I hope.

Ninjas or pirates?


1 comment:

  1. Great interview. I have this one on hold at my library, and can't wait to read it. Hopefully soon. *fingers crossed*

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever


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