Tuesday, 15 January 2013

The Birth of Phoenix: The Rising

With so many people asking me how I came up with idea for Phoenix: The Rising, I thought the appropriate place for me to spill my guts is right here on Evernight Teen…

I need to start this explanation off with a confession. I’m a Google fanatic. I Google everything.  In the case of Phoenix: The Rising, I started off knowing that I wanted to base a YA paranormal on the legend of the Phoenix, so I Googled the legend in different cultures and religions. In one story, Phoenix is also the name of a fallen angel. Light bulb! I was now going to include Nephilim, offspring of fallen angels and human women who were extremely jealous of the Phoenix’s immortality since they only had the lifespan of a mere mortal,  as my antagonists. I also researched the names of fallen angels and came up with the names of some of my characters. Then, the little hamster wheel in my brain started spinning and I thought, hmmm...Nephilim are the renowned giants of old, and BINGO, I remembered reading a southeastern California Paiute legend called “The Lady and the Giant”. That legend tied everything together and gave me my conflict and my plotline.  Using those three legends, I wrote my own, which is the backbone for this novel. I started off wanting to use it as a prologue, then decided to use it later in the story. It is now nestled snugly in the fourth chapter. Anyhoo--in researching the Paiute nation, I came up with more names, words in the Paiute language which are sprinkled throughout the story, and customs that would bring this baby to life. I even came up with my setting, Bishop, California, and wouldn’t you know it, there happens to be a lake just outside nearby Yosemite with a volcanic island in the middle of it which would be the perfect birthplace for my Phoenix! 

In celebration of the release of Phoenix: The Rising, I’d like to share a short excerpt, just after a kill. I’ve blanked out the names to protect the not-so-innocent…

Six miles outside of Bishop,  ???  pulled into a deserted rest stop. "Make it fast. We only have a couple hours before sunrise. All Hell's gonna break loose as soon as they discover the mess we left. I wanna be sleeping in my own bed when they do."

XXXX staggered over to the restroom, pulled the string to the overhead lightbulb, and locked the door. She fought the urge to retch as she yanked the blood-soaked hoodie over her head and threw it by the stool. ???  would get rid of it later with his own. Turning on the faucet, she plunged her hands into the stream of icy water, and watched as the color changed. A spiral of crimson swirled around the drain,
and eventually faded back to plain water as she washed the last bit of the girl's blood from her hands.My first kill, she thought bitterly. ??? considered it an honor, even if it was just taking care of a "loose end". Killing a suspected Fire-Child was one thing, but this girl was just at the wrong place at the wrong time. An innocent. Even knowing that, it amazed her at how easily she did it. Her hand trembled only slightly. All she could think of as she slid that blade across the girl's throat was her birthright. Immortality.

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