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Random facts about Book One: David and the Heart of Aurasius

The name of Grandma’s bulldog McFluff was a nickname for a friend’s miniature poodle. It started out as ‘Fluff’ but after a trip to a well-known fast food chain we tacked ‘Mc’ onto the front of everything we said for an entire afternoon and it kinda went from there.

Blackwater, the old sleepy town where Grandma lives, is a fictional place I made up with the notion it was set out west of Beaudesert in South East Queensland. I found out years later there really is a place in Queensland called Blackwater, way up north near Emerald. But I decided to keep the name anyway.

David’s parents were originally both workaholics that never had any time for him, but I felt this was too ‘Cinderella’ so injected his mother, at least, with some warmth and personality. Even Dad has a soft spot now (though David may disagree, especially during one of his Dad’s infamous ‘try harder’ lectures).

David is my Dad’s name and Flynn was my house name in high school.

Etamina is the word ‘animate’ backwards – animate literally means ‘to make move’, and I thought this was very appropriate considering the Forest’s method of protecting itself.

The dedication at the beginning of this book is to my family – ‘Iguana’ (Mum – no, she isn’t green and scaly, it’s a long story), ‘Popsie’ (Dad, a little more obvious), ‘Bud’ (older brother Levi) and ‘Teemis’ (younger brother Adam).

Random facts about Book Two: David and the Scavenger Prince

There was never meant to be a sequel to David and the Heart of Aurasius until I came up with the idea of Crowen one day. He was such a cool character, and he fit so well into Esmorde, I just had to write about him. Plus, world-building is an extensive process and I felt there was a lot more to explore in this new world I had created. I re-wrote the ending of Heart of Aurasius – which led to some pretty extensive re-writing in earlier parts of the book – and plotted out another four stories to create a series of five books.

Scavenger Prince reveals a lot of Esmorde’s backstory, particularly about the Elders and how they came to be. The story behind Esmorde’s change of seasons was based on a picture book I wrote when I was about 19, about an Ice Baron who hated summer and wanted it always to be winter. I never published the picture book but the story of Amber and the Wishing Tree was perfect for Esmorde, and has become an important plot point.

I’m slowly creating something of a glossary of elvish terms, and one day the words and phrases I have created may help readers in figuring out an important clue … so when Jeeka offers her translations for various things, pay close attention 🙂

My favourite chapter in Scavenger Prince is the one about Scrimp’s magic store. It was enormous fun to write.

In the original draft, Counsellor Jeb died, but I’m a sook and I hate killing characters unless it’s absolutely necessary … so he just scraped through.