Greetings, fellow bookworms! Originally, I was planning on rambling about this year’s NaNoWriMo and a few tips and tricks for survival through the month of November. However, since I already gave the run-down on NaNoWriMo and how it works, I actually have something equally as exciting (if not more so) to share with you this Saturday.
Thursday’s mini-interview with Matthew Dewar went so well that I’d like to share an interview with another author of the short story anthology, The Magic Within.
Nine stories come to life in this anthology imbued with magic and mayhem.
Please welcome our extra-special guest: Shannon Yukumi!
Rachel Sandell: Hi Shannon! Your story, “Of Orphans and Magic,” appears in JL Anthology Volume VIII, published just a few days ago. How did you come up with the idea for your story? Has writing it challenged you as a writer?
Shannon Yukumi: “Of Orphans and Magic” is a lighthearted tale that explores have’s and have-not’s, and how sometimes society has the wrong idea – but the first thing that needs to change is yourself. I drew real-world inspiration from my experiences living in two countries. Some days, I wake up and am forced to live with what I have, and others I am glad I live with what I don’t. It’s kind of what the main character, Lute, goes through. But I wanted to write that in a funny way because life is funny, so I gave it an upbeat spin with magic and (incompetent) wizardry.
In “Of Orphans and Magic,” after a young orphan loses her temper, she must learn to control her wild magic before the entire realm is doomed.
This was challenging for me because although a bit of snark here and there is usually a part of my writing, I never set out to make it a feature of one work. So I was nervous about putting each joke down, erasing what didn’t work, and I was even nervous about the jokes that landed. Another thing is I rarely work in first person, so that was a fun way to explore a different style for once.
RS: What do you like to do for fun, besides writing? Do your hobbies influence your writing process at all?
SY: With two kids to keep from messing up my stuff, I hardly have time for hobbies, let alone writing. I putter around with carpentry and I used to be heavily into various martial arts. I suppose this, including tending a garden, gives me a few bonus words I can add to my prose to keep it interesting.
RS: What other projects have you worked on? Are you writing anything new now?
SY: Another short story, “An Empire of Fools,” appeared in the previous anthology installment, Fractured Ever After, and I have already begun work on another short for a future anthology with JLA. I am currently working on two fantasy novels, one finished and getting polished, the other not so much.
RS: Now, for perhaps the most important question…If you were a witch, what would your first spell be?
SY: Oh, if I could stop time, that would be great. There is so much I need to get done in a day that I can’t, ever. Or maybe teleportation so I can stop the long commutes. Or, even better, a spell that turns water into wine and then wine into molten gold.
If you want to learn more about Shannon Yukkumi and future projects, you can visit twitter.com/WritesSy for more info!
And if you’re interested in nine magical short stories to read this holiday season, check out The Magic Within, where you can find “Or Orphans and Magic” among the eight other fantastic stories.