Really Stretch My Creativity

Jessica Goeken Author Interview

Ashes, Ashes follows a teen magi who is juggling family drama, school crushes and magical responsibilities when she draws the attention of a banished goddess seeking to restore her power. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

There wasn’t one “moment” of inspiration for this story. Each part morphed and clicked, adding pieces until I had a solid foundation on which to build. I’ve always loved creature stories, and werewolves in particular, but I didn’t want to write a run-of-the-mill werewolf story. I started looking for similar creatures to use instead, and landed on hellhounds. Originally the hellhound was connected to a witch, but as I did more research looking for historical witches to base my antagonist on I came across Hecate, and she took the place of the witch. With Hecate, the connection to ancient Greece built itself.

The family drama and school issues arose as I moved forward in my draft. My favorite characters to write are teens, and even though my teens have magical abilities, they still live in the modern world and face the same struggles and challenges that normal teens do. Balancing those struggles with the added magical responsibilities was definitely a challenge.

Adrienne Young is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character’s development?

By nature of her position and responsibilities, Adrienne needed to be strong, both physically and emotionally. The same attributes that strengthen her as a magi also ostracize her from her peers, giving her a degree of isolation and social awkwardness. Throughout the story I tried to put her into situations that would help her to see and value her own strength and allow her to come into her own as the leader I knew she could be.

What scene in the book did you have the most fun writing?

I had a lot of fun writing Adrienne performing the soul searching ritual in the hidden cave. The pacing is somewhat slower in that scene, which allowed for more observation and expository writing. Since everything occurs within her mind, there were no physical or magical rules I had to follow, and it gave me a chance to really stretch my creativity.

This is book one in your Mortals & Shadows series. What can readers expect in book two?

Book two is going to shift gears a little bit and focus on Mason’s adventures instead of Adrienne. Mason has a fairly abrasive personality, and I want him to have the chance to grow as a character into someone readers can root for and maybe even like. The other characters will still have their part to play, but they won’t take center stage again until later in the series.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

Teenage magi Adrienne Young kills monsters, protects the innocent, and sometimes passes chemistry. But when she kills a hellhound that’s been haunting college campuses she draws the attention of Hecate, a banished goddess seeking to restore her power and return to the mortal world. As Adrienne digs deeper, she uncovers Hecate’s murderous plot and vows to kill her once and for all.

When Hecate sets her sights on Liza, Adrienne’s sister, the fight turns personal. With a band of unlikely allies and time running out, Adrienne may have to choose between saving the world or saving her sister.

About Literary Titan

The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on July 5, 2022, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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