Janeal Falor is the author of You Are Mine, a novel about a society where magic is real and where all women are owned by warlocks. Below is our discussion about the inspiration for her fantasy/dystopian novel, the sequel Mine to Spell and why self-publishing was the best option for her.
1. Where did the inspiration for You Are Mine come from?
I’d been in a mood to read a lot of marriage of convenience/arranged marriage-type books and then I thought: What if these girls weren’t being sold off for money? What if they were being sold for something they had that was of great value, but something they couldn’t control. Something like… Magic! And You Are Mine was born.
2. What was your world-building process like? Did you start out with a basic idea and then build around it before you started writing or did it all come to you as you wrote?
Most of it started with a basic idea and came as I wrote. There were a few spots where I knew I needed to show more of what the world was like and I thought, how can I add something that supports their world and the story at the same time? But mostly whatever flowed out was what happened.
3. Who is your favourite character in your first novel? Why?
Katherine. Though I’m probably biased towards because I just finished writing her novella. She is sweet, but strong. She’s been through a lot and is able to use the strength she’s gained to help Serena.
4. What made you decide to self-publish? Would you recommend it to anyone else?
Short answer: I had been trying to get an agent for this book, but stopped because it just didn’t feel right. After a break from trying, I realized I still loved You Are Mine and wanted to do something with it. I thought a lot about the pros and cons to all my options, made a giant list of them, and in the end, self-publishing just felt right. Really right.
Short answer to the second questions as well: Yes, BUT it’s tons of work. That means it’s not for everyone. It’s an intense process when done right, but is an amazing feeling when you see your hard work pay off. There are a lot of great choices in publishing right now, so you can pick what works for you and your books. Thankfully if you do go with self-publishing, there’s a lot of great information out there.
5. Do you have any advice for any aspiring writers reading this?
Read. A lot. Write even more. Believe you can follow your dreams.
I still have a lot to learn, but these are the things that have helped me the most.
6. Can you give us any hints as to the next novel, Mine to Spell? Do you have a tentative release date yet?
Yay for hints! Let’s see what I can say without spoiling anything…
As much as I love Zade and Serena, the hero Cynthia falls for in Mine to Spell makes me all melty and swoony. Seriously, sometimes I “edit” gushy parts just because I want to read more about him. This means there’s more romance than the first book, though it’s still not the main focus of the book.
The first chapter starts a few months after You Are Mine ends on Cynthia’s 17th birthday. Also, I think the end of the first chapter is going to make a lot of people happy/excited and help with understanding Cynthia so much better. Nice, vague response 😉
And very tentatively, I’m shooting for releasing in Spring of next year. Probably March or April.