My Urban Dark Fantasy World

Victory Witherkeigh Author Interview

The Girl is a riveting coming-of-age story that blends spiritual, supernatural, and modern elements into a well-written story. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

The idea came about during one of those sleepless, insomnia, panic attack evenings after coming down from a tough day at work. I studied Public Health in college, so my first few jobs after graduation were in various hospital systems, including a few children’s psychiatric areas. So, my early career adventures and some of my heritage from pre-colonial Filipino and Pacific Island mythology and gods helped create my urban dark fantasy world. 

Your characters are intriguing and well developed. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

In developing characters, even if they may not be the focus or play a supporting role, I overwrote during the first draft phase, so I had a LOT of material to slice and dice. I enjoyed looking more at certain traits, or even behavior patterns and thought patterns, of a person rather than their specific stories in character development. Sometimes, just one or two qualities, because adding magic to any aspect of a story makes everything fictitious. With each character as much as I might know why they’re doing things, I also like to remember that my main character often does not.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

The Girl centers very much on themes of coming of age, nature versus nurture, and even the beginning of a journey of how a quest can be more for your own self-worth, and that goal is worth more than any treasure sometimes. Can you do good if you come from something terrible where you’re told repeatedly that nothing “likable” can come from? Be Good? One central theme I wanted to explore was the dangers because “likeability” or even “popularity” means “goodness.” I also wanted to expand on what we could envision as thematic motifs for “stories centered with fantastical and horror elements.,” or the literal definition of the dark fantasy genre that the Western high fantasy tropes have often dominated. The Pacific islands, while beautiful, are filled with many things that cause death and pain: the volcanic ring of fire, typhoons, and mosquitoes carrying yellow or dengue fever. The Girl will hopefully be the first glimpse into some tales of our pre-colonial gods and nightmares that became our own myriad of wives’ tales and stories that genuinely acted as a guide to keeping people, especially children, alive. Stories about creatures who haunt the jungles, waiting for the unsuspecting child to eat. Or the shape-shifting, blood-drinking aswang, a female predator able to hide amongst the living. Hopefully, The Girl will be another gateway for readers to discover the diaspora for the first time or add another dimension to the growing mythos.

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

I definitely like to have something brewing all the time. Before attempting to write a novel, I started my career as a short story writer in predominantly dark fantasy/horror for the past few years. I have a short story that should be available on The Creepy Podcast. As for another book, I can’t imagine not coming back to The Girl, assuming there is enough interest.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

The parents knew it had been a mistake to have a girl. At birth, the girl’s long, elegant fingers wriggled and grasped forward, motioning to strangle the very air from her mother’s lungs. As she grew older, she grew more like her father, whose ancestors would dream of those soon to die. She walked and talked in her sleep, and her parents warded themselves, telling the girl that she was evil, unlovable, their burden to bear only until her eighteenth birthday released them.

The average person on the streets of Los Angeles would look at the girl and see a young woman with dark chocolate eyes, curly long hair, and tanned skin of her Filipina heritage. Her teachers praised her for her scholarly achievements and extracurricular activities, from academic decathlon to cheer.

The girl knew she was different, especially as she grew to accept that the other children’s parents didn’t despise them. Her parents whispered about their pact as odd and disturbing occurrences continued to happen around her. The girl thought being an evil demon should require the skies to bleed, the ground to tremble, an animal sacrifice to seal the bargain, or at least cause some general mayhem. Did other demons work so hard to find friends, do well on their homework, and protect their spoiled younger brother?

The demon was patient. It could afford to wait, to remind the girl when she was hurt that power was hers to take. She needed only embrace it. It could wait. The girl’s parents were doing much of its work already.

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 January 5, 2023, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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