Welcome to the thirtieth of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, directors, bloggers, autobiographers and more. Today’s is with YA / adult fantasy / paranormal romance author Jodine Turner. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate the author further. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here.
Morgen: Hello, Jodine. Please tell us something about yourself and how you came to be a writer.
Jodine: I’ve been writing since I was in elementary school and encouraged to do so by my teachers. Throughout my life I’ve trained in a number of areas in the health care field (Ph.D. nurse, therapist, health educator), but writing has always been my passion. When I became ill in the mid-1990s I took the opportunity to begin writing my novels. I moved to Glastonbury, England, for a year. It’s one of my favorite spots on the planet, a place I became fascinated with after reading Marion Zimmer Bradley’s The Mists of Avalon. I wanted to immerse myself in the energy there, and do research, because many of my novels are set in Glastonbury. My very first novel was published by Glastonbury Press.
Morgen: What genre do you generally write and have you considered other genres?
Jodine: I write Young Adult and Adult fantasy, magical realism, and visionary fiction. With paranormal romance sub-genre. I have not considered other genres to be truthful. I love these genres, this is where I fit. I did so much non-fiction writing for my dissertation that I am happy now to be in a differently creative world, inspired in a totally different way. There could be another genre eventually because I never say never!
Morgen: What have you had published to-date? How much of the marketing do you do?
Jodine: The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis and The Keys to Remember. While these are the first and second novels in my Goddess of the Stars and the Sea trilogy, I wrote them to be stand-alone novels. The trilogy is an edgy saga of a young priestess who’s reborn during three different critical junctions in history in order to help humankind move through fearful and bleak times – the demise of Atlantis, the Dark Age’s suppression of the feminine, and today’s turbulent world. The novels are an adventure filled initiatory journey into the Mysteries of the Goddess and carry keys to embodying the ultimate magic – love, both human and divine.
Morgen: Are your books available as eBooks? If so what was your experience of that process? And do you read eBooks?
Jodine: Yes, they are available as e-Books, and I do read e-Books. My publishers submitted my books for eBook format, thank goodness, so I didn’t have to worry about the technicalities, the formatting, etc. But I understand it is much easier now to do on your own.
Morgen: You produce mp3 meditation CDs which you sell on your website, does that have any cross-over with your writing?
Jodine: Oh, yes! The theme of my novels is embodied love, both human and divine, as that is the ultimate magic and most powerful force there is. Given that, the mp3 meditations I made (some are free downloads), are practical tools meant to be stepping stones to help engender that embodied love within us. The Goddess of the Stars and the Sea from my novels is the divine feminine force of evolution. She inspires humanity during the turbulent times that precede radical change. The evolution She assists with is that of embodied love. We are called to participate in this change today, for the sake of our present day as well as our future. This evolution is about love changing how we respond to our world; love emanating from inside us out, into our behaviors, into our interactions with others. It is about balancing love that is deeply received and generously given; love that can actually change the very cells of our body. Embodied love is an evolution of both men and women, an evolution of the whole of humankind.
Morgen: You offer a meditational and spiritual teleconference service, have you ever been approached by any authors, perhaps with writer’s block?
Jodine: Most of the people interested in the teleconference classes want to learn how to balance the giving and receiving of love, and how that can help them in their lives, their relationships, their happiness. They want practical tools. This can apply in all sorts of situations, even writer’s block!
Morgen: Do you meditate before you write?
Jodine: I usually tune in. I try to get into my body, and out of my head. This helps my inspiration and creative flow. Sometimes I light a candle to focus my intention in the writing. I’ve been known to have a special rock, or seashell, or some such treasured object close by. A sort of good luck charm!
Morgen: Have you had any rejections? If so, how do you deal with them?
Jodine: This quote says it – “There’s nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.” (sports writer “Red” Smith). My gosh yes, I’ve had my fair share (I shamelessly admit!). It’s part of the process. Sometimes they hurt, sometimes I feel misunderstood…but I always know I am being given feedback that is important to look at to help my writing craft. I’ve developed a thick skin. It’s necessary in this business. That doesn’t mean rejections don’t affect me. But this is such a highly subjective business, and knowing that helps. When I found my niche, my readers, my publishers – those people who love and appreciate my work – well, then that just fills my heart with happiness and makes all the tears and upset worthwhile.
Morgen: What are you working on at the moment / next?
Jodine: I’m working on bringing out my next novel, Carry on the Flame: (Part One) Destiny’s Call. It releases August 1st. Carry on the Flame: (Part Two) Ultimate Magic, releases shortly thereafter, on October 31st, 2011. And the seeds of a new novel are beginning to emerge. Another magical realism novel that takes place…, you guessed it, in Glastonbury. I received glimpses of it when I sat in the Abbey ruins when I visited in January 2010.
Morgen: What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Jodine: As Joseph Campbell said, “Follow your bliss.” Keep true to your heart and your personal truth. And always polish your writing craft. Writers’ groups are so important. Don’t write without feedback. Your writing may be beautiful and make sense in your mind, but feedback is crucial. Readers are the important people here. And then once given feedback, filter it through your heart.
Morgen: Running two writing groups and belonging to two others, I couldn’t agree more. You’re based in Oregon, USA; do you find this a help or hindrance with letting people know about your work?
Jodine: “Aw, shucks and golly-gee…” We do have electricity and cable and internet here! I live near a city, but a sane distance away! In today’s world with the technology available to us, it really doesn’t matter where one lives.
Morgen: Absolutely, I’m so grateful to be a writer in this era. You married an Englishman, have you found any literary culture clashes?
Jodine: I met and married Chris in Glastonbury. He’s English and Welsh. There have been no literary clashes with us. Other types of clashes maybe! As Winston Churchill said, “We are two nations divided by a common language.” In so many instances, Chris and I had different cultural meanings for the same word. It was really funny. And it took some getting used to in the beginning of our relationship as we often had to explain what we were saying even though we both spoke English. But with his accent, I always listen even if I misunderstand!
Morgen: Yes, we do like each other’s accents, don’t we? Are you on any forums or networking sites? If so, how valuable do you find them?
Jodine: Yes. Connection with other authors, and readers especially, is important. This is how I found you, Morgen!
Morgen: Indeed. 🙂 Where can we find out about you and your work?
Jodine: My website is: http://www.jodineturner.com, my blog: http://.www.visionaryfiction.blogspot.com, Facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/JodineTurner.Author, On Goodreads: http://bit.ly/k1PPbJ, Jacketflap: http://www.jacketflap.com/drjodine / http://bit.ly/l1lVVs, Amazon’s author page: http://amzn.to/kzfNA7 and Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/JodineTurner
Morgen: Is there anything else you’d like to mention or another question that you would have liked to be asked (if so what would you have replied)?
Jodine: Yes, thank you. Here is a brief synopsis of my trilogy and its first two novels. The Goddess of the Stars and the Sea trilogy: The trilogy is an edgy saga of a young priestess who’s reborn during three different critical junctions in history in order to help humankind move through fearful and bleak times – the demise of Atlantis, the Dark Age’s suppression of the feminine, and today’s turbulent world. The novels are an adventure filled initiatory journey into the Mysteries of the Goddess and carry keys to embodying the ultimate magic – divine love.
Each novel in the trilogy can stand on its own. First in the trilogy is the highly acclaimed The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis. The second novel is the award winning The Keys to Remember. The third novel in the trilogy, Carry on the Flame: Part One Destiny’s Call, is already award winning and will be released August 1, 2011. Carry on the Flame: Part Two Ultimate Magic will be released October 31, 2011
The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis: It is human legacy to evolve spiritually. It is the role of the Goddess of the Stars and the Sea to assist in the transition. One such turning of the ages occurred in Atlantis… The final days of Atlantis are marked by deceit, lust, and greed. The once vibrant culture, blessed with advanced knowledge bestowed upon it by a race of star beings, now suffers with a corrupt governing body and a degenerate priesthood. The Awakening is the story of Geodran, a strong-willed priestess with ancestry from the stars who lives on the continent of Atlantis during the time leading to its destruction. The Goddess of the Stars and the Sea is awakened from Her dreamtime with the knowing that a change for humankind approaches. The Goddess intervenes to assist humanity, and calls upon the young priestess, Geodran, to be Her helper. Geodran struggles to fulfill a destiny larger than and in conflict with her own personal desires, a destiny bestowed upon her by her mother, the High Priestess Jaquine. In a moment of maternal desperation, Jaquine had promised her unborn child, Geodran, to the Goddess, in return for the baby’s safe birth, thus sealing her daughter’s fate. Geodran’s journey is a heroic quest to bring forth the next era of human civilization.
The Keys to Remember: In this award-winning continuation of the ‘Goddess of the Stars and the Sea’ trilogy, humankind is once again on the threshold of a spiritual evolution. In fourth century Glastonbury, England, six year old Rhianna is kidnapped from her home and raised in a Christian Abbey but has never forgotten her grandmother’s prophecy –“Your destiny lies with the Goddess of the Stars and the Sea.” Rhianna alone must mid-wife the next stage of spiritual evolution, as dark times approach for humanity. Powerful forces within both the Abbey and the priestess community of Avalon conspire to keep Rhianna from her rightful destiny and her true love. The price of her heroic quest is far higher than she expects.
Morgen: Thank you Jodine. This has been really… would it be too corny to say “enlightening”. I wish you all the success with your forthcoming projects.
Jodine returns on Monday 15th August for part 2.
Jodine Turner is an author of YA/Adult fantasy, magical realism, and visionary fiction. She is also a therapist, a consecrated priestess, and a deacon in the Gnostic Church of Mary Magdalene. While living in Glastonbury, England, the ancient Isle of Avalon, Jodine began writing the Goddess of the Stars and the Sea trilogy. The novels are an adventure filled initiation into the Mysteries of the Goddess, the divine feminine, divine masculine, and sacred union. First in the trilogy is the highly acclaimed The Awakening: Rebirth of Atlantis. The second novel is the award winning The Keys to Remember. The third novel in the trilogy, Carry on the Flame: Part One Destiny’s Call, is already award winning and will be released August 1, 2011. Carry on the Flame: Part Two Ultimate Magic will be released October 31, 2011
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