hantal Gadoury is brand new author with a flair for fantasy, romance, and the beautiful thing in literature. We are particularly excited to introduce her and her medieval fairy tale, Allerlierauh, as our first EVER acquired work. Chantal has agreed to stop by our blog and treat us with an interview about her writing career, and what keeps her muse speaking...
[PH] What (in a short summary) is Allerleirauh about? What prompted such an interesting title choice? What does it mean?
[CG] Allerleirauh is based on the Fairy Tale Allerleirauh or also
known as "Donkeyskin." I decided to keep the Grimm Brother's title because I wanted it to be recognizable. The Fairy Tale is an old, and almost unknown classic. My version of the tale is about the Princess Aurelia, who is faced with a father who desires to marry her, all to keep a promise to his late wife. Aurelia tries to trick the King, by agreeing to marry him only if he can fulfill impossible gifts. When he does, she's forced to flee. Aurelia is found by a Prince, who is much more than the every-day Prince Charming. He's a man struggling to take over the Kingdom left to him from his deceased parents, and facing an arranged marriage. Aurelia and the Prince (Klaus) kindle a friendship, and a love - and help each other in their journey of self-discovery. While Allerleirauh in German means, "All-Kinds-Of-Fur" - to me, it symbolized a story of inner strength.
[PH] That's awesome! We love strong heroines and hard-hitting themes in our fantasy literature. So then, what is the most important message in Allerleirauh that you hoped to convey to readers and why?
[CG] Allerleirauh is meant to convey a message for those who might have been abused - at least, beginning at the surface level of the novel. It's supposed to carry the message of strength and encouragement. First, to not be afraid to speak out. Second, to recognize that there are people who will love and care for you, no matter what. And third, not to allow the abuser to define your life - only you have the power to do that. I wanted to write a book for those who might be in a similar situation and feel alone - to know that they're not. The underlying theme is to rise above; no matter the challenge - you hold the power to always rise above.
[PH] Sounds like it was maybe a little difficult to delve into your darker psyche to write some of those moments. So, when writing, do you place a little bit of the real people in your life into your characters? Who most inspires you?
[CG] I'd say yes, depending on the story! In the novel Allerleirauh, I'd be lying to say if I wasn't inspired by Disney and fairy tale characters. Ariel, Belle, Susan Pevensie - etc. Klaus was inspired by all the books and movies I had ever seen with a charismatic and sincere male "love-interest." I took a lot of Prince Eric from The Little Mermaid and tried to make my own version of a Prince that had depth and soul. I'm sure I had a little bit of myself in both Klaus and Aurelia. My friends and family are often sources of inspiration, if not originally by media.
[PH] Excellent! We love Disney, too! There's a lot of good inspiration there, so when you’re stuck, where do you draw your literary inspiration from?
[CG] Pinterest is a huge help when it comes to being stuck. I'll look through photos (and make boards), and that kinda allows other ideas to follow. I'm a very visual and auditory kind of writer. So much and pictures are a huge help when it comes to plotting or influencing a scene.
[PH] Everyone here at The Parliament House are Pinterest addicts! Which begs our next question: Are you a quirky author? Do you have specific rituals and methods you must perform before you begin writing?
[CG] I don't think I'd describe myself as quirky. I certainly don't circle a table three times, tap my nose, and blink twice. I'd consider myself a pretty normal "author." I listen to a certain playlist that I specifically create for my stories. With all of my novels, I'll go find music first before I begin to write, so that I can capture the essence of what I want to capture, correctly! If I feel like treating myself, I'll go get a coffee. I really just need a quiet place, headphones, and my computer!
[PH] Music is a great way to get into the zone. We usually work best in the mornings. What time of day do you like? Are you a late night writer or early morning writer? Why?
[CG] I'm definitely a late night writer. Mostly because it's the only time I tend to have for myself. I enjoy having a shower to think over plots and get the wheel of thoughts rolling. Then, to sit down with a cup of tea or coffee and type away, long into the night. It's just when magic happens.
[PH] Where are you headed? Where do you see your literary career in five years from now?
[CG] I hope I'm headed in the right direction. I'd love to actually feel like I have a literary career in five years from now. I'd love to have a few more novels under my belt and reach new readers. A dream come true would be to have writing as my full-time career. I'd love to have the ability to write and read novels all day, every day - and live my life happily. For now, I'm headed forward; one step at a time. I'm not sure where it'll take me, but I hope it's closer to my dreams.
[PH] Well you are most certainly off to a great start! What most excites you about working with The Parliament House on this new release?
[CG] I'm excited to finally have a home for Allerleirauh, and for the story to reach a better wide range of an audience. I'm excited to bring a new and improved version of the story to the table. I'm also really excited for the educational journey I'm confident in experiencing with Parliament House. With each publication, I learn something new about writing and myself. I can't wait to see where this chapter of my own life takes me.
[PH] What is some good advice you can offer to budding young fantasy writers?
[CG] I feel as though I always use the same cliche line, more often than not - but to simply 'follow your dreams.' Despite being told that 'you can't write' or 'it's no good,' KEEP GOING! Do not sell yourself short. Be your own #1 fan, because honestly - at times, in this market, you are. And that has to be enough. If you don't believe in your own work, no one else will. Listen to helpful criticism and try to do something with it. Even if it takes a few days to soak in; realize that writing is something that always has room to change and improve. Each out to other authors! Join groups! Talk. Ask Questions. Listen. And most importantly, to always have fun.
[PH] Thank you so much for joining us for an interview, Chantal! What thoughts do you want to leave your readers with?
[CG] I'm so excited and so thrilled to have this experience with Parliament House. This means so much to me. Thank you for the opportunity! I can't wait to share Allerleirauh with all of you!
Look for Chantal's Allerierauh from The Parliament House in early 2017!
follow her on Twitter and FB: