I understand you have a new release out called The Magic Knot. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?
The Magic Knot is a paranormal romance about Cornish piskies and Irish Tuatha dè Danaan. The heroine visits Cornwall looking for her father. She discovers she is the Cornish piskie queen and her father is a dark druid who has imprisoned her people in portraits. The race is then on to discover the fairy lore needed to release her people before her father destroys them forever.
The Magic Knot is a very interesting title. How did you arrive at that name?
In my story The Magic Knot is a magical pendant similar to a Celtic Knot possessed by every person of fairy blood. The three linked rings symbolise mind, body, and spirit. In my story, lovers give their Magic Knot into the safekeeping of their soul mate—the ultimate demonstration of trust and commitment that binds them together in mind, body, and spirit for life. I felt the title embodied the romantic and mystical essence of the story.
What made you decide to write in this genre?
Romance and fantasy were my favorite genres, so I naturally turned to one of those when I started writing. I always enjoyed short contemporary romances and as I was very familiar with that type of story, I initially wrote one of those. My characters were too unconventional for short contemporary romance, so I tried my hand at paranormal romance and discovered a wonderful blend of my favorite genres.
Where did you get your idea for this particular book?
I initially conceived the idea for The Magic Knot to be a contemporary story of identical twin Irish brothers running a pub in Cornwall. When I changed my focus from contemporary romance to paranormal, the brothers became fairies, and then I threw in a dark druid, a vampiric winged fairy, and a fire-wielding Irish fairy queen.
What are your favorite paranormal research books or sites, and why?
I have a series of books called The Element Encyclopedias:
Some I’ve used are on Witchcraft, Magical Creatures, and Psychic World. The book I’ve used often while researching my fairy world is The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Fairies by Ana Franklin. This is a wonderful treasure trove of everything fairy.
Which character did you like writing about the most, and why?
As well as my hero Niall O’Connor who is half leprechaun and half Tuatha Dè Danaan, and my heroine who is half human and half Cornish pisky, I have two favorite secondary characters: the hero’s identical twin brother, Michael, and a vampiric winged fairy called Nightshade. I love them all and it’s impossible to choose my favorite. Michael was probably the most fun to write as he is a rascal and likes to tease his brother.
Tell us about how you develop your characters. Do you create character sheets, do interviews, that sort of thing? How does your research and/or world affect your character development?
I ponder my main characters for a while, then write out character sheets for the hero and heroine and sometimes also for important secondary characters and villains. I always know their goals, motivations and conflicts. I like to layer the internal conflict and give the main characters a number of internal issues to trip them up. However well I know my characters before I start writing, they always evolve and change as the story progresses.
How do you go about building your world if you use one? Do you use maps, charts or drawings?
I know my characters, and start with some ideas gleaned from my research books. Then the world evolves organically as I write the story. I am always surprised by how complex the world becomes by the end of the first draft.
Do you have any authors that inspired you?
I’ve read a lot of romance and fantasy over the years. The combined influence of all these wonderful books inspired me to write paranormal romance. I enjoy reading many genres of romance and women’s fiction but I purposely don’t read much paranormal romance. I like to keep my head clear of other author’s ideas so I can develop my own stories with no outside influence.
What do you feel is the most effective promotion you have done for your book?
As yet, I don’t know. I have only been promoting for a few months prior to my book’s release and I’m not sure what is working best. I’d hazard a guess that the most effective promotion so far has been taking part in the American Title contest and appearing for five consecutive months in the Romantic Times Magazine. Unfortunately, that is not something I can repeat with my next book!
What do we have to look forward next?
The Phoenix Charm is the next in the Magic Knot Fairies series. The book features Michael O’Connor as he and fairy witch Cordelia Tink try to outwit the king of the Underworld to rescue the pisky king’s son. This will be a December 09 Dorchester release.
To celebrate her book release, Helen Scott Taylor is offering a signed copy of The Magic Knot to one lucky commenter on today's blog. She will be popping in to answer questions throughout the day. I'm sure some of you have questions or comments for her, so please ask away...
As a child, when Helen didn’t pay attention her teachers accused her of being away with the fairies. Things haven’t changed much! Only now, the fairies are tall and sexy and they live in her stories rather than just in her head. Helen resides in South Western England near Plymouth with her husband, two teenagers, two Shih Tzus, and a cat who rules the household with a velvet paw. With the rocky cliffs of the Atlantic to the south and the windswept expanse of Dartmoor to the west, she loves to walk in the countryside while she plots her stories. She believes deep within everyone there’s a little magic.
Check out author’s website at www.HelenScottTaylor.com
Check out author’s website at www.HelenScottTaylor.com