Most of you who follow this blog know that I have enjoyed a lot of stories from Jeffe Kennedy over the years. This story is something I am looking forward to but I also love seeing what has inspired her stories of The Twelve Kingdoms and here we get a glimpse of what makes her tick.
It should be no secret by now that I love mythology of all kinds. It started with attending Catholic rituals in my tender youth, combined with an early acquisition of a tattered copy of Bullfinch’s Greek Mythology. The two are more closely related than you’d think! I also read all kinds of fantasy with consuming passion, including every fairy tale I could lay my hands on.
Later in life, as I headed to college, my very Catholic grandmother told me that I didn’t believe in the Holy Church because I didn’t know enough about it – so I majored in Religious Studies along with Biology. Being who I am, however (remember that copy of Bullfinch’s?), I took courses in every religious practice the university offered, including one in Greek Mythology! Along with Islam, Judaism, Jewish and Catholic mysticism, oriental philosophies of all stripes and a smattering of others.
In short, my head is stuffed with religious mythologies of all kinds.
So, when I wrote The Twelve Kingdoms books, though I didn’t plan to have a religious mythology as a foundation for the world, I wasn’t too surprised when one developed. I didn’t really draw on any particular legend, religion or mythology, however. One of the beautiful – and liberating – aspects of creating a religious mythology is that it allows an author to comment on the role of belief in our lives without criticizing any particular philosophy.
Because I truly believe there’s no line of belief that’s wrong or another that’s right – the problems come in when people take their beliefs to extremes or try to force them on others.
All that said, I wanted the mythology of The Twelve Kingdoms and Uncharted Realms to be based on goddesses to contrast with the primarily patriarchal religions that dominate our world today. The stories are heroine-centric, so the mythology is infused with the divine feminine also. Sharp readers might recognize aspects of Aprodite, Athena and Artemis in Glorianna, Danu and Moranu.
Though I did a bit of mixing and matching too!
More about Jeffe:
Jeffe Kennedy is an award-winning author whose works include non-fiction, poetry, short fiction, and novels. She has been a Ucross Foundation Fellow, received the Wyoming Arts Council Fellowship for Poetry, and was awarded a Frank Nelson Doubleday Memorial Award. Her essays have appeared in many publications, including Redbook.
Her most recent works include a number of fiction series: the fantasy romance novels of A Covenant of Thorns; the contemporary BDSM novellas of the Facets of Passion, and an erotic contemporary serial novel, Master of the Opera. A fourth series, the fantasy trilogy The Twelve Kingdoms, hit the shelves starting in May 2014 and book 1, The Mark of the Tala, received a starred Library Journal review was nominated for the RT Book of the Year while the sequel, The Tears of the Rose was nominated for the RT Reviewers’ Choice Best Fantasy Romance of 2014 and the third book, The Talon of the Hawk, won the RT Reviewers’ Choice Best Fantasy Romance of 2015. Two more books will follow in this world, beginning with The Pages of the Mind May 2016. A fifth series, the erotic romance trilogy, Falling Under, started with Going Under, and was followed by Under His Touch and Under Contract.
She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with two Maine coon cats, plentiful free-range lizards and a very handsome Doctor of Oriental Medicine.
Jeffe can be found online at her website: JeffeKennedy.com, every Sunday at the popular Word Whores blog, on Facebook, on Goodreads and pretty much constantly on Twitter @jeffekennedy. She is represented by Connor Goldsmith of Fuse Literary.
And a bit about For Crown and Kingdom:
The Crown of the Queen
A Twelve Kingdoms Novella
Dafne Mailloux, librarian and temporary babysitter to the heirs to the High Throne of the Twelve – now Thirteen – Kingdoms, finds it difficult to leave the paradise of Annfwn behind. Particularly that trove of rare books in temptingly unfamiliar languages. But duty calls, and hers is to the crown. It’s not like her heart belongs elsewhere. But how can she crown a queen who hesitates to take the throne?
This novella will be part of a duology called For Crown and Kingdom, which will also contain a novella by Grace Draven.
For Crown and Kingdom (The Crown of the Queen) will release on May 24, 2016 and will be available in digital format and print.
Buy links will be added to the bookpage once available: