Why I wrote Shadowhand

[Featured image by Tumblr user lizard-is-writing]

With this post, I hope to start a sort of series about each novel I have written/am writing and why I felt compelled to tell that specific story.

I don’t write because it’s fun, I write because I have to.  It allows me to hold onto some semblance of sanity even though writing sometimes makes me feel more insane than not at times.  Writing isn’t easy, it isn’t magic, it’s hard work.  When I sit down to write out an idea, it’s because these characters won’t let their voices be drowned out, they demand to have their story written.

Dreya and Drys have been a part of my life since I was in high school.  They began as fae, but have ended up as a half human, half Dark Elf and a full blooded Dark Elf, respectively, in my original fantasy world of Tarith.  I knew pretty early on that their story was not going to be an easy one to tell and that it would hit close to home at times.  Even before they came to my world of Tarith, they were both broken people trying to heal from parts of their past.

Dreya and Drys’ story is one about darkness.  It is about the inner darkness that we all carry inside of us, whether it’s there because of something that has happened to us or because we choose to let it reside there.  This story touches on both of those and the things that become possible when one embraces their inner darkness, rather than running from it, or trying to deny it.

Good and evil are a matter of perspective.  Yes, there are some actions many of us can agree on that fall solidly on one side or another, but most of the world exists in a grey area that is only colored by our own experiences.  Shadowhand was born when I started looking at my own inner darkness and the parts of myself that didn’t agree with society’s vision of good and evil and decided to see what would happen if I let it flourish.  Spoiler alert: I became a much happier person.

I then wondered how I could tell a story about broken people who found strength in that brokenness and good people who sometimes do evil things.  From years of Dreya whispering to me about her haunted past, I knew that she would be capable of telling this story, and that Drys, a war veteran plagues with guilt, was also another perfect candidate.

I’m not here to write about the hero that saves the day, or the chosen one.  I’m here to reach down and pull out some of the darkest, truest parts of us and bare them to the light.  To show that embracing ones darkness does not make a person evil, but that it can sometimes heal us more than we know.

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