Paper and Thorns has Arrived

About a month ago, Paper and Thorns made its debut into the world. After some delays getting the Kindle edition up and running, I'm glad to say that this series is firmly established.Yes, you read right. Series. But more on that later.If you have missed mypreviousglimpsesintoPaper and Thorns, here's a little backstory. I have always loved the story of "Beauty and the Beast" (see also my recent post about the story over at SpeculativeFaith). Back when Disney's live action remake of the animated film came out, my artist friend Mirriam sketched what she thought the Beast should have looked like (I'll give you a hint: there were lots of horns and menace going on). The design sparked an idea and I started chipping away at the story of that Beast and what his happy ending might (or might not) look like.After a couple of false starts, Paper and Thorns really took off. It's a short book (less than 100 pages), and that is purposeful. I tend to struggle keeping a …

On the Need for Hope

This year has been a dry one as far as blog posts go. Despite being home a lot more than usual, I haven't been drawn to post as much here as I have in years past.I haven't been entirely idle. I finished the first draft of the third Albion book. I published Paper and Thorns. I have pulled out some old works to edit and started new ones (including a sequel/companion novella to Paper and Thorns). I crocheted. A lot. Since last fall, I've made 3 baby blankets, an afghan, a scarf, a throw blanket, and two stuffed Nifflers. Most of that happened after quarantine hit.And yet, this has been a season of doubt, of anxiety, of unease. I have found myself growing more and more restless and dissatisfied with my day-to-day, and even with the media I consume. Sometimes, I will pull out a familiar story just to find some half-remembered peace in its pages.
I started digging into my thesis collection the other day. These stories held a special place in my heart because they represented two …

Author Interview with Arielle Bailey

Arielle Bailey's debut novel, The Icarus Aftermath, is out in the world now, and I'm here today to talk to her about it.

ED: The Icarus Aftermath mixes Greek myth and Star Wars-style space opera. What led you to that combination? What led you to use the Icarus/Labyrinth myth specifically?AB: The combination burst on me fully armored, like Athena herself. My horse had died earlier that day, and I’d had a long day following. I was in the shower, trying to deal with it all, and I suddenly thought, “What if Icarus flew too close to the sun not to be an arrogant twit (look, he was in the original myth, okay) but to save someone else?” I mentally saw it in the blackness of space and knew instantly it was a space opera. Another ten seconds and I had the foundation of a scene that I wrote as soon as I got back to my room.It was a blinding flash of inspiration.And after I realized I’d be retelling Icarus, I knew I had to retell the Labyrinth/Minotaur myth too, because it’s always bugge…

The Icarus Aftermath Review

With their best captain gone, Talos steps up to lead the Rebellion’s fighters. First objective: take out the Labyrinth. Only problem? No one can find its key.
Koralia thinks she can find it, or at least an alternative. She didn’t count on uncovering secrets that could rock the galaxy to its core. Now she’s rushing to find a solution before everything blows up in their face.
If they don’t destroy the Labyrinth soon, the Rebellion, the planets they protect, and an entire race of people are all doomed.
Greek Mythology meets Star Wars in this retelling of the Minotaur and the Labyrinth.

I remember seeing Arielle post hints and snippets of this book last year when she first began writing it. I loved the concept (Greek myths AND Star Wars? It was meant to be.) and couldn't wait to get my hands on the finished product.

Here we are almost a year later and we have just that.
Okay, okay, you say. But is it good?
"Is it good?"

No. It's amazing.
First off, it has a cast of cha…

More Fairy Tale Fun Featuring OTPs Galore

Fairy Tale Central is doing some daily challenges on Instagram featuring OTPs (One True Pairings) as part of their celebration of all things fairy tale this month. For those of us who wind up doing these things in blog form, Arielle had kindly shared the full listing on her own blog here.

Fairy Tale OTP Challenge:
1. The first fairy tale OTP you shipped

     Probably Beauty and the Beast or Aladdin and Jasmine. These are the earliest fairy tales I can remember getting deeply involved in.

2. The cliché fairy tale OTP that everyone ships but you still love
     I think I'll probably go with Snow and Charming from Once Upon a Time. Do I sometimes feel like they get too much of the spotlight in later seasons? Yes, but their relationship is wonderful in the first few seasons as we see them fight for each other.
3. Your favorite hate-to-love fairy tale OTP
     I'm assuming this is an enemies to lovers trope rather than an example of "I don't want to love this, but I do.&qu…

Link-Up with Fairy Tale Central

Hello, again! I have been plugging away on some projects (and crocheting away, as I'm due to have a new baby nephew this summer!) -- one of which is to finish a round of edits on Paper and Thorns. I hope to have some exciting news on that front in the next month or two, but for now we'll have to be satisfied talking about other fairy tales.
Today I'm participating in Fairy Tale Central's blog link-up. Fairy Tale Central is a website dedicated to fairy tales, including their origins, history, and retellings. Every month they feature a new tale, but in February they pull out all the stops and celebrate fairy tales of all kinds.

FTC: What’s an obscure fairy tale you love?
I always feel like "The Wild Swans" is a bit obscure since it's not one of the "big" tales that everyone knows thanks to Disney and the multitude of illustrated picture books that abound in the children's sections of bookstores.

FTC: If you got to choose Disney’s next animated…

12 Days of Christmas (Author Style)

I've seen this tag show up in a few places, but Kate over at Seek Him First was the first I saw put an authorial twist on it and answer based on her own stories. I liked the idea so much I had to try it myself.

The partridge stood alone in the pear tree. What is your favorite standalone novel?

Definitely There's No Place Like Home? because I think it's probably the strongest of the few standalone books I've written. I can't wait to dive into editing it later next year.

Love is in the air! Who is your one true pairing?

So, this is a tricky question because the Albion series has its fair share of pairings, but with only the first book released, none of them are exactly "canonical" yet. But the one pairing that's fairly set up (or at least implied to be in the early stages) in Albion Academy is Mer…