Hi, everyone! I’ve been busily churning out submissions and neglecting the blog again, but today, I bring you a special treat. As part of Danielle E. Shipley’s release tour for “Surrogate Sea,” we offer this letter she received from the South Wind…
I must admit, you have surprised me. For I have seen your mind, your spirit, and found at first glance little to impress me. Your darling Wilderhark Tales have, by and large, been sweet and straightforward – two characteristics as far from my essence as anyone could name. Vesparya-like stories, they are. La-di-da frolics of love and light adventure. Your human readers seem to enjoy that kind of drivel well enough, but I’d sooner turn the pages to soggy pulp in a monsoon than read them.
But then, “The Surrogate Sea”.
Whatever possessed you, little scribe, to tackle such a tale of intrigue? Of subterfuge and sly deceit? That is not like you. That is like me.
Ah, but perhaps you never intended it to be so. You likely went in expecting this story to be much like any of those that came before it. A human royal in search of true love, check. A magical complication, check. Edgwyn Wyle being Edgwyn Wyle, the forest featuring in there somewhere, check and check and yawn.
What did you in – what changed the game – the act that sealed this new tale’s fate was choosing to advance me from my passing appearance in Book Five, placing me front and center. A sweet, straightforward plot and I cannot coexist. My plots snake and twist, slipping through the slightest loopholes. You think yourself a spinner of stories because you craft make believe into truths. Yet the art I weave takes still more skill, for I shape even truth into lies.
In me, my dear, you’ve made a trickster – a dangerous undertaking, for one so simple and open as you. Neither one of us believed you had what it takes to keep up with the likes of me. And you really don’t, do you? Yet you gave it your best, thereby taking this tale far beyond all the rest in scope and subtlety. No more tickling breeze of the west. Together, we’ve called up a glorious southern gale.
I still don’t think I’ll be bothered to read it, though. I’ve lived it, after all.
Yours by rights of creation,
Austeryn, Wind of the South