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Along The Messy Paths Of Our Lives

Michelle Picard
Michelle Picard Author Interview

The Whisper of Dragons follows a Story Whisperer that must solve the mystery behind the chaos engulfing the planet before a deeper threat leads to the death of humankind. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

I first pictured the story world of The Whisper of Dragons when I was walking through a state park, looking at tree roots poking out of the ground. I’d been listening to a podcast reviewing a book about the complex communication and social networks of trees and the messages that flow between them under the earth. I began to think about how everything communicates with everything else. And that was the beginning of the magic system of the novel, the idea of magic manipulating the stories between everything. As a writer I value language, and believe that the stories we tell affect reality. So it was an easy step to think about stories as the connection between matter and a force that could be manipulated to influence matter.

The other major influence on my novel was the common experience of living with the existential threats to our world today. We face so many problems that it’s pretty disheartening at times. So like anyone else, I look for solutions. Since I’m not a scientist, technology maverick, politician or spiritual leader, I’m stuck trying to build solutions with my writing. It helps me process all of the uncertainty we live with. In this book I got to combine many of my interests including language, a fascination with human nature and its shortcomings, and a curiosity about what constitutes life. Plus, I’ve adored fantasy and science fiction all of my life and have so much fun building worlds out of my interests.

What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

I relate to my protagonist Kavi’s need to find a purpose in her life and untangle her identity. My day job is as a psychotherapist, so I love questions about how people develop their identities. Since it’s a common for most of us mere mortals to walk around feeling disconnected and different from other people (I don’t mean to be negative, I just listen to so many folks who feel this way), I wanted my character to be experiencing her personal version of the largescale external threat of the novel, humanity’s disconnection with itself and how that threatens everyone’s survival. And wanted her to figure out her way through to accepting herself and to finding a way to humanity to become more connected.

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

As I have already mentioned, some major themes include connection versus disconnection, and how love, forgiveness and compassion help address the contrast between the two. I also wanted to address the idea of magic and science as a blend. Not because I believe we’ll be able to harness magic in our real world to help solve our complex problems, but because any of our solutions will mean thinking out of the box and redefining what we often assume are singular solutions that look at something only from one lens. And finally, I wanted to think about how we make assumptions in our personal relationships, and how even when they have been injured or fragmented along the messy paths of our lives, there is a chance to heal and to develop more understanding. I wanted to explore this idea not only in the main love relationship of this novel, but also in the protagonist’s relationships with her foster sister and her long time mentor.

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

My current project is a book tentatively named Dreams Walk the Earth. It is another contemporary fantasy set on modern day earth. The premise is that the collective dreams of humanity have been harvested to bring the magical creatures from human imagination to life. Dragons, faeries, witches, shapeshifters, unicorns, and vampires. They have hidden from humanity because of the danger to themselves with exposure, having only come out to the world when they helped heal society in the aftermath of World War II. They withdrew again after that grand effort, but with environmental threats and political unrest, the protagonist Aislinn, who embodies a mixture of all of their magic, must convince them to help heal the world and save humanity. Only they discover that another magical race has been created from the dregs of human nightmares and is a threat to everything. I am hoping that this novel will be available by next Christmas. In the meantime, I have another complete manuscript that needs revision and then I will push forward o publish called The Demon’s Whip. It’s a dark high fantasy, very different from what I’ve written in the past. I worked on the project years ago but was distracted from the finish line. But I’ve gotten some good feedback on it and want to get it out there.

I’ve previously published a contemporary fantasy trilogy called The Eden’s Court Saga, also available on Amazon. The first book of the series is Ruling Eden, so check it out. There are some similarities of that story world to my current project, Dreams Walk the Earth, although they are not at all meant to be set in the same universe.

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook | Website

Something is wrong with the Story of the world….

Stories are the bonds of connection between all matter, and their breakdown is causing earthquakes and social unrest to tear apart 21st century Earth. Kavi, a Story Whisperer, must solve the mystery of this chaos before a deeper threat leads to the death of humankind.

Kavi has a secret. A dragon chose her as its heir when she was a child because she possessed strong magic to bend the Stories of matter. Kavi’s dragon wants her to inherit its mantle, transform, and join the ranks of the Guardians who protect the world.

But if the dragon’s powerful Story magic cannot save her people, how will she?

And will she have to give up her humanity to do so?

The Whisper of Dragons

The Whisper of Dragons, by Michelle Picard follows Kavi, a Story Whisper, who must solve the mystery of the earthquakes and social unrest that is tearing apart 21st century Earth. She is also the heir to one of three dragons who are Guardian to Earth’s Story. What happens when humanity loses its connection with itself, causing the Void to tear apart the very fabric of the world? And what happens when the Kavi’s dragon wants to kill humanity to get rid of the Void? Kavi must decide between saving humanity and merging with her dragon to make a new Guardian.

I enjoyed that this novel is written from the first person perspective. It allowed me into the story, into the character’s mind, and into a familiar but magical world. Michelle Picard uses poetry to advance the storyline and give readers insight into the character’s thoughts. She kept it tied to the character, a good way to define Kavi, with the poetry taking over to be the end all of the story.

Stories have been a cornerstone to passing on history for as far back as people can remember. So, Michelle Picard’s inclusion of having everything, including the Earth have a story was truly wonderful. She made it clear that everything encompassing humanity is connected by the Long Story. The author while giving readers enough information about the Long Story to fully understand the situation, managed to keep the novel focused on the threat and the solution Kavi must carry out.

The Whisper of Dragons by Michelle Picard leaves the reader with a deeper understanding of the connectivity of all things in nature, and that sometimes those we believe are on our side can make bad choices. This is a complex and creative story about humanity that I highly recommend to fans of paranormal and urban fantasy.

Pages: 442 | ASIN: B098LYMKJ6

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