Supernal Dawn Launch Countdown: Interview with Joe & Sharon, Part 2
Supernal Dawn, the new book from authors J.A. Giunta and Sharon Skinner, has officially been released now for about a month, and we continue to celebrate the great reception it's received with this second part of the interview with the authors. You can read Part 1 of the interview here.
Q: The story has a lot of different fiction elements (Magic, sci-fi, etc.) in it. How hard was it to balance all of that in the storyline?
Joe: I didn’t find it difficult at all to balance magic and superpowers. The sci-fi aspect was a bit more difficult for me. Trying to imagine future technology and give a rational explanation for how it functions can be a lot more tedious than inventing a spell or power that simply works because I want it to. The biggest difficulty I think it managing the interaction of it all in a way that makes sense and doesn’t violate any rules we set forth in our own world.
Sharon: Joe is a great at plotting story and we knew going in that we were mashing up a lot of elements here, super powers, magic, alien technology. The world was pretty well built by the time we started writing, but there was room to dig deeper into certain aspects and that was where it got really fun for me.
Q: There are influences in this new book that go back to an original multi author project, Haven, from some time ago- talk about that a little?
Sharon: With Haven, it was a group of authors who were all writing their own stories set in a world with only a couple of basic rules, including the rules of the world cannot be broken and you can do anything to another writer’s characters except kill them. It was a lot of fun to see what would develop, who would be put in dire straits, who would have to write their characters out of those situations, etc. The difference being it was more of a free-for-all and less of a focused collaboration. Also, see response 3.
Joe: The Haven project was intended to be a comic book world told in serial short stories, in a dark city with vigilantes that had no powers. Or, at least, that’s how it started. It was more about telling stories that included characters other authors had created, putting them in difficult situations the other authors would have to deal with.
Supernal Dawn takes place in a full-blown superhero world, filled with magic and every supernatural creature you can imagine, as well as a healthy dose of alien technology.
Q: Describe this new world our readers are entering- what should they expect, or not expect?
Joe: It’s a world filled with magic and monsters, secret agents and superheroes, alien tech and ancient artifacts, covens and conspiracies, and a number of family secrets that just get keep getting worse.
Sharon: Expect some surprises in the way that the affecteds manifest power. Also, there are several underlying political entities that are vying for power/control during a time when everything we knew or thought we knew is rapidly changing. I like that it isn’t easy to know whom to trust.
Q: In the story, did things happen that surprised both of you? are there elements that neither of you anticipated that became part of the plot?
Sharon: I think Joe had a handle on where the story was heading from the beginning, and he can correct me if I am wrong about that. But since I am such a pantser, I do think I surprised him with a few things. Overall, the ending was especially surprising for me and a lot of fun to write.
Joe: While I like to plan out major story elements before starting, I also work from a skeleton outline for each chapter. I don’t actually plan out everything. Ideas come to me as I write. Some work out, some don’t. There was at least one part of the story I hadn’t planned on that became pretty big, though it has much more impact on future stories.
Q: Is this a series? Are going to see these characters again?
Joe: This was absolutely planned as a series. Supernal Dawn is everything it needed to be to get things rolling, to flesh out the world and the characters in it. What comes next is an order of magnitude more… super.
Sharon: We discussed this early on as the first book in a series and we left a door open at the end of this book for the story to continue. Personally, I hope we get the chance to continue writing these characters, further exploring their world and seeing what challenges and obstacles they will face in the future.