Guest post by Pierre Grimbert author of the best-selling French fantasy series The Secrect of Ji. The first book in the series, Six
Heirs, is now available in English, exclusively on Kindle.
Readers sometimes ask me if the magic of in my fantasy series The
Secret of Ji is real. They are probably expecting me to say, "Of
course, concentrate your energies and you can do anything!" As it is based on human spirit and the elemental powers,
it is plausible, after all. In the book, there’s no need for an enchanted wand,
fairy dust or a book of spells… Just your Wish and your determination to
even though it is my job to tell stories, I must also speak the truth. No, this
magic does not exist. But while I was writing the first novel in the series, Six
Heirs, I encountered something like it.
I spent more than two months researching and taking notes, forbidding
myself to write a single line before I was truly “possessed” by the story I
intended to tell. I took a deep breath. I knew I would have to work through
moments of discouragement, weariness, and questioning ... and that I
would have to rework or even delete entire passages.
But once I began writing, something wholly unexpected happened: my
characters started speaking through me! Each time I introduced a new
protagonist, defining his character, his past and his future aspirations, I
waited for the unexpected. Especially with the dialogue, which almost seemed to
write itself, as though I were merely transcribing a real discussion.
I was careful not to resist the phenomenon. Thus, some of the scenes I had
imagined were completely turned upside down by the actions and words of the
characters as I was writing. But how could I prevent the warrior from suddenly
expressing his anger, a part of his personality? How could I stop this exceptionally
intelligent woman from becoming the group’s natural leader? However, it was not
what I had planned.
In the heat of action, I was able to hear these characters cut in. Their
comments were beautiful or tragic, about love and friendship, hatred and anger,
despair or euphoria ... such genuine things coming from the voices I had “listened in on.” It made me cry! And
that was truly magical.