Rebekah Carroll spent six years honing her craft before releasing her debut novel “The Ajoiner Realm” of the Defenders of Radiance series. She considers herself to be merely a witness to the passions of her characters than the author of them. Every twist and turn of the plot blindsided her just as much as any reader, much to the amusement of her unendingly patient—and tragically perfect—husband, Joseph. When she’s not losing exasperated arguments with her rambunctious creations, she enjoys spoiling her goofy rescue German Shepherd, laughing with family, and loving her sweetheart. As our Author of the Day, she tells us all about her book, The Ajoiner Realm.
Please give us a short introduction to what The Ajoiner Realm is about.
The Ajoiner Realm is an epic fantasy that follows General Warren Northwright and his team as they battle through enemy territory to defeat the Darkness that devours their world. Their quest is to find and ignite an ancient source of power called the Beacon that will restore the Ajoiner Realm to what it was before the Darkness invaded.
How did the idea for the novel originate?
Initially, the novel was just supposed to be a short story about classic good vs evil. Within a few months of working on it I realized the small idea I’d started with had grown too large and demanded to be written into a series.
Who is General Warren Northwright? What makes him so special?
General Warren Northwright (or “just Warren” as he likes to say), is the former commander of the Ajoiner Realms armies. He doesn’t believe the title “General” belongs to a man who’s only subordinates left are the three friends he grew up with.
Tell us more about the monsters in the Ajoiner Realm.
In The Ajoiner Realm, we meet a variety of different creatures. The two most prominent being the Kellnox and the Drevics which are both part of the Darkness’s armies. The Kellnox are shadowy post-humans that have increased speed as well as magical abilities called necrosing magic. Using this magic they can summon shadow barriers and shadow bolts that cause serious damage if touched by them. It's also worth noting that when Kellnox are present Drevics enter a heightened frenzy state becoming more wild and fierce. As for the Drevics themselves they are blind, four-armed creatures that, unlike the Kellnox, originate from the Darkness Realm. There isn’t much else known about their race as they only seem interested in killing anyone in sight.
Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?
I enjoy working with my hands. I am also an artist specializing in the traditional paper and pencil. Some of my original artwork is featured in The Ajoiner Realm. A little known fact about me is that I do have a day job working in an integrated medical office as lead massage therapist.
If you could choose one character from your book to spend a day with, who would it be? And where would you take them?
I would love to spend a day with my female characters Vallerie and Lillian. I think it would be amazing to have a girl’s day out shopping and getting pedicures with them. I imagine Vallerie would quickly find the latest sleek/elegant fashion while Lillian would take some encouragement to even try anything on. Once she realizes how soft our oversized hoodies are she’d have to get one. Naturally, I would be paying for the two of them which would make Lillian blush and play with her gorgeous wavy blonde hair.
In your mind, what happens to the characters after you write their final chapters? Do they continue to "live on" in your imagination?
I like to think so. However, they’ll have more than earned their retirement by the end of the series and we likely won’t see much of them after the final curtain.
What's an aspect of being a writer that you didn't know about going in?
You have to be comfortable feeling a little crazy. Something I’ve come to accept is this isn’t me telling a story. It’s me documenting the epic battles my characters fight in. Sometimes that means arguing with fictional beings and getting strange looks.
Which writers inspire you?
Brandon Sanderson and J RR Tolkien had tremendous impacts on my writing. Both encouraged me to chase the fantasy no one else has dreamed of and that is such a special thing.
Do you have any interesting writing habits? What is an average writing day like for you?
I wrote the first two drafts of my first two books primarily on my iPod/smartphone. At the time it helped me focus, but as I’ve gotten a little older I find that writing style very limited.
Current writing days are spent with a cup of whatever drink I am craving (usually chocolate milk or tang), hair in a messy bun, and snuggled on the couch with my giant goofball german shepherd at my feet. I typically have a notes page open next to my WIP and web browser at the ready.
What are you working on right now?
I am currently 40% complete with the second draft of book 2 in the Defenders of Radiance series. Additionally, I am learning how to better use a drawing tablet to create better artwork for the coming books.
Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?