Many of you know that the novel now named TAKEN started out with a different name… and quite an interesting story all its own.
For anyone who doesn’t know. . . this story came straight from a dream – one that has held me in its grip all these years, even after writing it all out. It was one of those dreams that felt as if it actually lasted the five years I somehow experienced in what was probably actually less than twenty minutes.
It was so big… so huge… so REAL! And it was exactly the story I needed to force me to finish a novel, not just because my family pushed so hard to get me to finish, but because it would not go away. The story… the characters… the idea… just would not shut up until I started writing… and then, until I finished writing.
And that is the story of my first finished novel.
And the story does not end there. The novel has been through so many changes.
First, it was going to be an adult main character. Then, when everyone told me I couldn’t have a “clean” fantasy story with an adult audience, the story was re-written as young adult. And then, when I realized it would simply not work that way, I secretly started putting it back… but I kept a few things from the rewrite because I really did like them. I think that happens every time you rewrite something.
Another thing that changed was the name. The very first name name this story held was Andarii, because I WAS going to name each book in the series according to the planet it took place on… which caused a problem when I really dove into the story… and then when two books became three, and three became five… you see where I’m going with this.
And so the name became The Chosen, which was a good name, but didn’t really convey the message I wanted.
Now, the story is simply TAKEN and it is PERFECT!
Something else that has recently changed is the verse inside…
When I write the first draft years ago, I didn’t even know that Christian fantasy was a thing, so it was written with very little Christian content. Basically, it acknowledged God’s existence because the MC is a Christian, but God had very little place in the actual story. I thought that would be what mainstream publishers demanded. Well, they wanted way more concessions than that [which is why I decided to go the small press route way back when] and I felt like my book baby was going to be mishandled no matter who got hold of it so, for a time, the story was stuck in a drawer metaphorically speaking.
Now it’s out, and it’s the way I really want it and there is a verse on the inside and it is THE MOST PERFECT verse you could ever imagine. Who knew I would find the absolute PERFECT words to sum up my entire story in the KING JAMES Bible?
Well, GOD knew.
“… I have been an alien in a strange land.”
~ Exodus 18:3 KJV
So, here we are. And the cover will be released in two days and I could not be more excited about it!
Hope to see you all there!