As you all know, I've been binge-reading the Fate Abandoned series by L. Danvers this month. What a wonderful series, with great action, exciting quests, sweet romance, magic, dragons . . . basically everything this reader could wish for!
I am very excited to be featuring L. Danvers in an exclusive interview this morning. I hope you will enjoy reading her answers to my fan-girling questions!
The Fate Abandoned series has been such a fun and adventurous getaway for me this last month, and I can’t wait to learn more about how it came to be!
First of all, I love the world you’ve created for this series. At first I expected it to be a historical fantasy, but then you began to bring in giants, quests, forbidding silver forests, and suddenly there’s this flavor of fairy tale woven in. It’s completely irresistible! How did you go about inventing Vires and the surrounding lands? Do you have pages and pages of notes and details, or did it all come together naturally in your head?
L. Danvers: You’re too sweet. I wish I was organized enough to come up with pages and pages of worldbuilding notes!
The only note I had as far as the Vires and the surrounding lands were concerned was a very rough map. The rest of it was all in my head.
Daphne is a perfect example of the kind of heroine I love. She’s tough, talented, kind-hearted, and wise. I loved that you early on demonstrated both her skill with the sword AND her caring for the mistreated people of Vires. It made me see her as more than just a tough-girl but a true queen in the making. Was Daphne an easy character to write, or did she take some work to pull together the way you wanted? Is she based on someone you know, or entirely a figment of your imagination?
L. Danvers: Daphne was purely from my imagination. It did take multiple rewrites to get her story right. Fate Abandoned was one of the first books I wrote, and there was a huge learning curve. For example, in the first draft, there was no explanation of how she was suddenly amazing with a sword when facing off against the atrocitas. Oops!
Thankfully, some amazing beta readers went through the story and gave great feedback that helped me transform my rough idea into a compelling story.
As you mentioned, I love that Daphne is so multi-dimensional. She’s not only a skilled fighter, but she’s so fierce that even her twin brother, who everyone sees as a hero, seeks help preparing for tournaments. And yet, she’s not ruthless. There’s a gentleness about her, and much of that develops as a result of her abandoning everything she knows to venture out on the quest to save her brother.
Okay, let’s talk romance. And Gregory. The dynamic between this sword-wielding princess and this charming outlaw is AMAZING. Can you tell me about the inspiration behind these two? Were they as much fun to write as they are to read?
L. Danvers: Ah, Daphne and Gregory… *Swoon!*
I have to say, I’ve written many books now—all filled with characters that I absolutely adore—but their relationship is my favorite. I seriously miss writing about them! They’re an unlikely pair, but they make such an incredible team. And they’re not just loyal to each other, but to their friends, too.
With Daphne, I basically created the type of heroine I wanted to read about. I didn’t base her off of any other characters I knew, but as far as what she looked like, I totally pictured Jenna Coleman (Clara Oswald from Doctor Who).
Gregory, on the other hand, was inspired by Robin Hood—although a more rugged version, I suppose. I picture him as a Tom Hardy type.
Book 1 was such a fun story . . . but suddenly by book 2, we’re taking a turn for the darker. (I haven’t read book 3 yet at the time of this interview!) The stakes are higher, the costs are greater, and though the reading experience is just as page-turning, it’s definitely more somber. Did you always see the series developing this way, or did the sudden twists and turns surprise you as well? As a writer, do you plot in detail in advance, or simply let imagination carry you?
L. Danvers: With the Fate Abandoned series, I had no outline whatsoever. But that’s my favorite way to write. I love it when my own story surprises me!
It was originally supposed to be one book, but there was SO much going on that I realized I needed to break it apart into a series. And while it does get darker, it was necessary for the story. There’s a lot that Daphne has to overcome in order to become the woman she’s destined to be. (There’s so much more I want to say, but I don’t want to spoil it for you! Just hang in there.)
I’m currently working on a new series, Vampires of Crescent Cape, and am writing from multiple points of view. So, now I to outline in order to keep the storylines straight.
No matter what, though, my characters always find ways to surprise me. I swear, they have minds of their own…
Last of all—can you tell my readers the best places to find and connect with you on social media?
L. Danvers: Absolutely! I’d love to connect and geek out over our favorite books and shows. Here’s where you can find me:
Book Slayers Squad FB Group (my favorite way to connect!): https://www.facebook.com/groups/bookslayerssquad
I hope all of you enjoyed learning a little bit more about this wonderful author and her work! If you're excited to start the Fate Abandoned series yourself, be sure to enter my Author of the Month Giveaway for a chance to win the entire trilogy on Kindle!