I would like to thank Heidi Cullinan for taking the time to talk to us about Redressing Reality and her latest Wilde City Release Miles and the Magic Flute. There is also a giveaway, so stay tuned for that.
Using Paranormal to Right the Wrongs of Real Life
More than once I’ve written a novel as revisionist history of something in my real life which has bothered me, something I wanted to “fix.” Usually they’re small elements, little gems I plant like seeds. When I wrote Miles and the Magic Flute, though, the element I was trying to exorcise was big and clumsy inside me. Something I’d taken for granted had evaporated in a way that threw me. I felt confused, unnerved, and afraid. Processing that event is something in many ways I’m still doing. Probably I could have played with it in fiction without going paranormal, but even if I had that to do over again, I don’t know that I would.
The thing with paranormal is you can make your own rules, which is great—but you can also rework real life elements until they’re barely recognizable. In Miles and the Magic Flute, Miles’s foray into dreamland represented a decade-long, complicated social network. The choices he made at the end represented my own letting go, my own costs. The seductive lures were different in my experience and Miles’s own, but the emotions felt exactly the same.
What I like about using paranormal elements is you can get so quickly to the meat of the issue—deep hearts that are more resonant colors than literal representation. It’s hard for me to discuss too much without giving bits of the story away, but what Terris reveals about where he’s been, what he’s experienced—that was so personal to me. It felt like excorcising something very deep and raw, and I couldn’t have done it any other way. Miles’s pain of processing his own story and Terris’s was more of that same kind of release: I remember my arms aching as I wrote that part, like I was setting something inside me free.
I think part of the magic—pardon the pun—in using paranormal elements is that the fantastical aspect can mask things too raw to show in conventional means. You can tell yourself you’re only writing or reading about a faerie in a prison, not resonating with your own buried pain. It’s good old-fashioned catharsis, but you don’t have to pay quite so much attention. Release without the same sharp acknowledgement of pain.
There’s further alchemy too, of course, because what represents one thing to me as the author might mean something entirely different to each reader who encounters that story. That’s my favorite magic of all, that something can mean one thing to me and something entirely different to someone else—and both, all experiences are valid. Maybe the resonance is simple, maybe it’s too complex to describe. Any variation on that is perfectly okay.
Whether you read Miles and the Magic Flute for a lark or for your own personal meaning—I hope it’s a great ride.
From the Publisher:
When unemployed Miles Larson retreats to his friend’s Minnesota pawnshop to lick his wounds, he discovers that a few notes on a magical instrument reveal an erotic fairyland where the sorrows weighing on his heart don’t exist at all.
Yet fantasy comes with a price, and soon Miles must choose a path. He can surrender his soul to the dreamlord to sustain his pleasure… or he can defeat the faerie and save the mysterious beast-man who promises love. Miles would choose love over pleasure in a heartbeat—if only to seize it he didn’t first have to acknowledge the pain inside.
Is Miles strong enough to learn that sometimes to find happiness, we must face down our sorrows?
This title has been previously published and has been revised from its original release.
About the Author
Heidi Cullinan has always loved a good love story, provided it has a happy ending. She enjoys writing across many genres but loves above all to write happy, romantic endings for LGBT characters because there just aren’t enough of those stories out there. When Heidi isn’t writing, she enjoys cooking, reading, knitting, listening to music, and watching television with her husband and ten-year-old daughter. Heidi is a vocal advocate for LGBT rights and is proud to be from the first Midwestern state with full marriage equality. Find out more about Heidi, including her social networks, at www.heidicullinan.com.
Wilde City has kindly offered an eBook copy of Miles and the Magic Flute to 1 lucky commenter.
Contest ends 4 May 2014 @ 11:59pm CST. Must be 18 or older to win. Void where prohibited.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
|This post may contain affiliate links.
|Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews. The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.|