I Had To Do Her Justice

C.E. Clayton Author Interview

Symbiotech is the third book in your exciting Ellinor series. What were some things you knew you had to wrap up in order to satisfy longtime fans?

There were three things I knew had to be wrapped up for the readers that have been with me from the very start, two of which all revolve around Ellinor. Firstly: completing Ellinor’s arc of grief and mourning to accepting that she is worthy of happiness despite her anger and depression, and Jelani had a big part in that journey so paying off that relationship became really crucial. And secondly: Ellinor needed to really figure out who she was again when you stripped everything away. She was always trying to figure out who she was without Misho but resisting because it felt like too big of a betrayal, but when so much is taken (often violently) from her, she really had to buckle down and reevaluate her life and what she wanted from it. Writing her arc was one of my favorite things to do, Ellinor has come so far since “Resistor” and I knew I had to do her justice in this third book. I also needed to address all the forces that were vying for Fiss so that, if/when Ellinor and her crew return for a new adventure, it wouldn’t feel rehashed due to the same obstacles reappearing. That way readers get a satisfying conclusion, but won’t feel like there is no story left to tell in the next iteration of these characters.

What were some challenges you set for yourself as a writer with this book?

I didn’t want this book to feel easy for the characters so even though, with how things ended in “Deadlock”, it wasn’t a surprise in terms of what needed to happen in “Symbiotech” with Cosmin, the challenge I set was to still have that conflict be really daunting and not something that the reader knew the outcome of. I have read so many trilogies where the show down with the big bad guy just didn’t feel as ominous as it did in the previous books that, that became the challenge I set most for myself. That and tying up loose ends but that was something I knew my critique partners would help me with the most, but crafting that tension between Ellinor and Cosmin was my personal biggest challenge that I set for myself as a writer. Cosmin fashions himself to be a god after all, so nothing could be easy.

Was there anything about Ellinor’s character that developed organically while writing and surprised you?

Her “momma hen” tendencies actually! Ellinor is such a brash, foul mouthed, “let’s punch them” type of character that when these moments of tenderness come up between her and Fiss, or her and Oihana, or even Ellinor and Kai where she puts them and their needs first and takes care of them really surprised me, especially with how natural of a progression it became. I loved having this character show me just how multifaceted she was and teach me that just because Ellinor isn’t classically maternal doesn’t mean she is devoid of those tendencies. So being able to bring more of those moments to the forefront in “Symbiotech” was really special because it was just so organic and natural for her despite all the trauma she went through.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I’m working on a crime and mystery sci-fi duology that actually features some of the characters from “Symbiotech” and the Ellinor series. This will be a completely separate series even though it does feature some familiar faces you won’t have to read the Ellinor series to enjoy these books. I just love the universe that the Ellinor series takes place in too much to say good-bye to it just yet. These two books are also a bit of an homage to my interest in true crime, so it’s a little bit of a departure from what I’ve done before but I think it gives a much deeper look at the city of Euria and the kinds of people that inhabit it. I’m hoping to have both of those books released in 2023, ideally 5-6 months apart (aiming for the first to be released in Summer) but we’ll see. I am expecting my first child early in the year so my launch schedule may move around a little to say the least!

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook | Website

Ellinor is done—running and hiding.

Cosmin has made it violently clear that wherever Ellinor and Kai go, he will find them. And, he will gladly make their families suffer until Ellinor returns what she stole from him. But Ellinor cannot, and will not relinquish Fiss; not to those who would bind and shackle him to serve their greedy agenda, not to anyone.

Even with her magic returned, and with Fiss, Kai, and Jelani to help, they are still no match for Cosmin, a point made agonizingly clear when Ellinor and her friends tangle with an old foe. Without more power, Ellinor has little hope of saving her family before there is nothing left to save. The power is there, but learning how to harness her upgraded magic is complicated, and time has run out. Then there are other distractions, in the guise of feelings Ellinor would never have thought possible for her again, if it weren’t for the charming Jelani and her growing attachment to him.

Allies are in short supply, and any help will come with a price, but that won’t stop Ellinor from returning to Euria. She will face Cosmin von Brandt and save her family, or die trying.

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 December 30, 2022, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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