In honor of Father’s Day, this month’s theme is, of course, fathers! Please welcome Angela Korra’ti, author of the fabulously fun Faerie Blood. The links for the rest of this month’s posts can be found at Drollerie Press.
Every writer who’s strung together more than five words in a row knows the maxim “write what you know”. Given that my mother passed away when I was sixteen and that I saw very little of my father throughout my childhood and much of my adulthood before he too finally passed away, it’s therefore probably no surprise to anyone that a lot of my characters wind up with parental issues–if they have parents around on camera at all.
In Faerie Blood‘s cast alone, I’ve got a heroine whose parents are both dead, a hero with a dead mother and a father shattered by her death, and an antagonist who is himself a father with severe issues. And if I go and survey stories I haven’t sold yet, I’ve got an epic fantasy with three main characters whose fathers are all dead, a Greek-mythology-based which by definition has characters with father issues all over the place, and a couple of science fiction novels whose lead characters are decidedly father-deficient.
Are y’all sensing a pattern here?
And yet, I can’t say that I set out to work out my daddy issues through my characters. If anything, I’d say that I picked it up from all the books I’ve ever read in my life–since after all, you can’t swing a stick in a library without hitting a book that involves at least one character with major parental issues. It’s one of the most universal themes there is.
I can say this, though: that memory I have of writing the leprechaun story, the one where the girl gets swept off by the leprechauns to be their queen for a day? I remember telling my dad about that not long after I’d written it. I was riding somewhere with him in his big convertible car, and although I can barely remember the incident now, I’m pretty sure Dad was listening to me with that tolerantly interested way I’m thinking any parent reading this will recognize themselves having whenever their child starts telling them all about leprechaun stories they made up. It was my dad, too, who bought me my first typewriter, the one on which I typed up the very first manuscript I ever tried to professionally submit. So among all of my family members, my father’s still the one who gave me the most support.
Which means a lot to me, to this day.
I wish you could have gotten to see my first real novel come to life, Dad. I miss you. And if I ever sell Queen of Souls, for the record, none of the daddy issues in there came from you.