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Friday, September 14, 2012

Guest Post: Marian Allen

Guest Post: Marian Allen

We have a guest post from the amazing Marian Allen.  She is a scifi, fantasy, and sometimes horror writer with many published books to her name.  Check her out on or her website at

Marian, what is your current work about?

SAGE is a Taoist fairy tale, more than anything else. The ruler of a kingdom neglects her duties, which causes disorder. Her consort usurps her throne and orders her death and the death of any children she might have had hidden from him. But The Way tends to balance itself, given time and cooperation. Book 1, to be released in 2013, is about the disorder. Books 2 and 3 will be about the struggle between chaos and order, forcible control and correct leadership. (Yes, I’ve been reading the I Ching!)

How did the idea of the story come about?

The initial idea was of a benign rivalry between formal wisdom and organic wisdom. My favorite fairy tales are ones about a girl who takes shelter with an old woman and suffers for bad behavior and is rewarded for good behavior; that was a big part of the story seed.
Did you plan this story, or let the story create itself?

I wrote and I planned and I rewrote and I replanned. I stuck new bits in and took new bits out. I outlined. I took notes on stuff I didn't want to forget to tie in. I wrote character sheets. I interviewed characters. Sometimes my short stories come out effortlessly -- SOMETIMES -- but my novels "create themselves" about as well as a cat takes a bath = not very well. When it comes to novels, I don't plan 'em and I don't pants 'em; I wrassle 'em.
Are there any characters in the story you feel greater kinship with? Why?

Probably Devona, because she's such a Mom. She's an observer and a manager and a caretaker. When something needs doing and she sees a way, she does it. She has a temper, but she never hurts anybody with it, which would be a dream come true, wouldn't it? If getting angry resulted only in good effects?

If you were in front of a reader for the first time, and asked to summarize why they would love this, what would you say?

If you loved fairy tale logic, where people get what they deserve based on the quality of their hearts, you'll love this. Nothing comes easy to anybody in this book, but what good is a happy ending without challenges, quests, and adventures?

Thank you Marian, and all the best to your upcoming project!


  1. Thanks for letting me visit today, James. :) SAGE is a project dear to my heart. I'm SO happy it's about to be published!

    Marian Allen
    Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

  2. This sounds interesting. I'll have to find it at Amazon. I love Eastern philosophy, have read the I Ching, and am a Zen Buddhist. Should be prime for my sensibilities.

  3. Congratulations, Marian. Best of luck with SAGE.