Not too long ago, I thoroughly enjoyed a faerie book called Halayda by Sarah Delena White, and NOW, I am happy to announce that the second book in this exiting trilogy has released! And look at this pretty cover...if you haven't read the first book, I definitely recommend starting there so you can join the fun!
A new queen falls. A death lord rises. An ancient foe looms in the shadows.
Sylvie Imanthiya is desperate to lead Faerie well and deepen the bond with her husband, former king Taylan Ashkalabek. But all hope of that vanishes when the winter solstice ceremony ends in disaster, stranding her and Taylan in the Deathrealm, and stripping the kingdom from her.
With Faerie in chaos, Zad and Diza are separated once again: Zad to reconcile with an old mentor to stabilize the kingdom, and Diza to confront the nefarious Casimir in the mortal realm. But Casimir claims that a greater evil seeks to destroy both realms, an evil that Diza’s unique death magic can hold at bay—if she could only remember how.
In the Deathrealm, Taylan is succumbing to the lure of specters from his past, and pushing away Sylvie’s love. Overwhelmed by decay and darkness, Sylvie must summon unexpected magic from the soul of Kyure to fight for her convictions and her husband’s heart.
Shadows divide them. Their friends are in peril. If Sylvie fails, her marriage and her world will fall.
Hello, Sarah! Thank you so much for dropping by my blog! I completely fell in love with your faerie epic, Halayda, and I can’t wait for the next book! Tell us a bit about yourself!
Hi Hannah! Thanks for having me, and congrats again on your own 2018 release!
What was the journey that led you to writing these books?
The inspiration for the Star-Fae Trilogy came in answer to a very specific prayer. I was going through a rough few years: the career I’d planned to pursue lifelong crashed and burned, I’d returned to the US after a tumultuous year overseas, and I felt like I had no future. I’d started writing during this time as a way of processing my experiences, but story after story fell flat and I ended up abandoning them. I was about to quit the whole thing, so I prayed that if I was meant to write, inspiration would strike hard and fast within the next few weeks. It did, in the form of a dream (I haven’t been inspired by a dream before or since, so this was a very odd experience!). I dreamed about someone who got dragonfly wings as the result of a mad science experiment gone wrong. By the time I woke up, I had a basic sense of the concept and the two main characters. I first intended to write it as a superhero story, but when I rolled out of bed and scribbled down a summary, I realized it sounded like ever superhero story ever, haha! It was a Sunday, so I let the concept simmer in the back of my mind while I went to church. Halfway through the sermon I realized the whole story would be a lot more interesting if the male main character was a faerie king. After that, everything clicked into place. As soon as church was out I rushed to Starbucks and pounded out the first chapter of what became Halayda. Halayda was the first novel I ever finished, and it was the book that taught me how to write. Through the process of bringing it to life, I discovered what sort of worlds I wanted to create, what themes I wanted to explore, and what kind of characters I was drawn to.
Who is your favorite character and why?
So hard to pick just one! It changes from book to book, I think. In Halayda, my favorite character to write was Sidika. She has so many layers hidden beneath her icy exterior, and she was always unpredictable. In Rothana, Casimir was the character I most enjoyed writing (believe it or not!). In Halayda, we saw the absolute worst side of him, but Rothana brings out more of his backstory and motivations. He’s not the greatest guy (slight understatement there), but he’s always interesting!
What were some of the biggest surprises that came from being an author? Were there challenges you had to overcome?
For me, the biggest surprise was that I became an author in the first place! I tried very hard not to be one. During college and grad school, I set aside my childhood love of fantasy and tried to focus on more “practical” things, believing that writing fantasy was trivial. My experiences working in the Middle East (a story for another time) helped me rediscover how powerful and important fantasy could be, but even after I started writing again, it took me several years to admit I was serious about it. The biggest challenge has been to remind myself that stories are important and valuable, and that when I write these books I’m doing something I was created to do. It has also been a journey to figure out my own writing process and accept the fact that I do not write as quickly as some people and that nearly every story turns into a massive epic whether I want it to or not!
How you do like to relax and recharge?
I make lattes. I drink lattes. I do latte art. Did I mention I like lattes? Lol. I work part-time at a local craft coffee shop, and I love all things coffee! My job is a refreshing break from writing, as it gets me out of the house and interacting with people in a chill, pleasant environment. Plus, I get free coffee!
I also make beadwork jewelry, and sometimes I get out my sewing machine and do some costuming (I learned to sew during high school just so I could do elf cosplays). I find it refreshing to work with my hands and express creativity in a more tangible way. I have a slightly obsessive interest in old Irish, Scottish, and English balladry, and a few weekends a year I’ll trek to a folk music festival and sit around singing old songs with friends. It’s always a nice change of pace! (Fae turn up in the old songs sometimes too! Here’s me singing one of my favorite songs featuring fairy changelings: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VujMQffUBg)
What are some of your favorite things? (Raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, etc.) Where do you draw inspiration?
I love mythology and folklore from around the world. I also take a lot of inspiration from alternative forms of storytelling, such as ballet (which I grew up doing) and ballad singing. Pinterest is also a huge source of inspiration! I’m very visual, and I love using Pinterest boards to gather inspiring images for all of my stories and major characters. (Want to see my boards for the Star-Fae Trilogy? Go here: https://www.pinterest.com/SarahDelenaWhite/)
What environment do you tend to write in? And what is your dream environment?
I usually write on the couch in my living room, with earbuds and a mug of tea. My favorite place to write is in a cozy coffee shop with latte in hand, though! I’d love to be one of those writers who can write anywhere, but I tend to get distracted by busy or unfamiliar environments. Oh well!
Can you share some plans or hints for the future?
There’s one more book in the Star-Fae Trilogy, which is slated to release in 2020. I’m also planning on a prequel novella featuring a younger Taylan and Sylvie. I have ideas for a few spin-off novels featuring some of the secondary characters from the Star-Fae Trilogy, but those projects are still a few years down the line. For the next few months, though, I’m taking a break from the world of Kyure and working on a novel set in the same world as Windswept. It’s an epic science-fantasy romance/adventure tale with a hint of satire, featuring a Chosen One who declares war on her own destiny and a Dark Lord who is secretly a smol floof!
About the Author Sarah Delena White was raised by wolves in an alternate dimension. She writes eclectic speculative fiction that reworks mythology with a fine balance of poetry and snark. She’s an experienced world traveler who loves to weave world folklore and ancient concepts into vibrant, original story worlds. She is the administrative manager for Uncommon Universes Press. When she’s not writing, she can be found making elegant designer bead jewelry, traveling to festivals as a professional ballad singer, drinking tea, and seeking to create the perfect latte. She can be bribed with dark chocolate. Social Media Links Website — Newsletter — Facebook —Twitter — Instagram
Facebook Party Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/697422377305289/ December 8th, join Uncommon Universes Press and Laura A. Grace of Unicorn Quester to celebrate the launch of Rothana by Sarah Delena White! Includes games, giveaways, exclusive behind-the-scenes, and more. Also features guest authors Bethany A. Jennings and Morgan L. Busse. Save the date to hang out with these fabulous authors!
Blog Tour Schedule
Monday, November 26th Author Interview – New Authors Fellowship
Realm Explorers Author Interview – Letters from Annie (Douglass) Lima
Tuesday, November 27th
Guest Post on Mythology – Fairies, Fantasy, Faith
Book Review – Becky Gaines
Wednesday, November 28th
Book Excerpt – Reading on the Edge
Thursday, November 29th
Character Interview with Sidikas – Becky Gaines
Author Interview – H.S.J. Williams
Friday, November 30th
Character Interview with Casimir – LivForHim
Behind-the-Scenes Feature – J.M. Hackman
Author Interview – Dreams and Dragons
Saturday, December 1st
Book Review – Pages to Explore
Monday, December 3rd
Author Interview – C. O. Bonham Book
Review & Excerpt – Coming Up Roses
Tuesday, December 4th
Behind-the-Scenes Feature – Lands Uncharted
Wednesday, December 5th
GuestPost on Zad and Pookas – H.L. Burke
Book Excerpt – Becky Gaines
Thursday, December 6th
Author Interview & Review – MissBriony.com
Character Interview with Taylan – Unicorn Quester
Friday, December 7th
Book Review – Jessica Rachow
Guest Post on Faerie vs. Sabeylln – Katherine Massengill
Book Review – Writing withWolves
Saturday, December 8th Rothana Facebook Launch Party