Thursday, March 3, 2011

Why I Write Fantasy - Rebecca Ryals Russell

Welcome Rebecca Ryasl Russell, author of YA and middle grade fantasy!

Amber: Why do you write fantasy?
Rebecca: Growing up I read one fantasy book after another and watched every episode of Lost in Space, Star Trek (every episode at least 3 times), Star Wars, anything Sci Fi. I devoured Lord of the Rings, every Anne McCaffrey book written, the Sword of Shannara series by Terry Brooks, I loved the Dark Tower series by Stephen King and read many of David Eddings series. In fact, it was while finishing a David Eddings book the concept for my first book was born. It then took me thirty years to finish writing it. I love writing Fantasy because of the room for invention. World building is so much fun I could just keep building and populating worlds. Does that give me a ‘god’ complex? Only on paper.

Amber: Why do you think readers love fantasy?

It is my belief that readers love Fantasy because of the escapism is provides. Fantasy as a genre has grown in popularity for that reason. Not only does Fantasy provide spectacular worlds to visit but the reader can wield a sword or crown, wings or breathe fire.

What other genre allows so many fantasies to be borne out by the reader? And for those who enjoy Romance, it lends itself perfectly to the Fantasy world in a wide variety of ways. The reader can easily be the Princess finding her Prince or Faeries and Elves. And dragons can be good or bad, helpful or not. Not only that, but in the Fantasy world any kind of magical creature, Mythological or newly created, can be born and used.

Amber: Tell me about your YA series.
Rebecca: Seraphym Wars has been a trip to write. Although it took me thirty years to finally sit down and put the words to paper, the story went through so many evolutions it wasn’t really even the same story by the time I finished. I chose to go the evil dragon route and incorporated the apocalypse and Revelations from the Bible as well as pulling actual news accounts for the evil committed by the dragon-demons. I couldn’t imagine worse evil than I have found in the daily news. 

Then I created a world that is Steampunk because Narciss, the head dragon and ruler of Tartarus (Mythological Hell) suppressed technology to control the planet’s population. The planet is predominantly primal forests full of dangerous creatures designed from Mythological elements. But in the farthest corner of the globe away from Narciss sits an enchanted island. After the Great Shuddering, the arrival of the dragon-demons on the peaceful planet of Solsyl, the Majikals who had been living all over the planet migrated to this island. 

So now what remains of the Elves and Faeries, Dwarves, Mermaids and other creatures I designed live on the island with a Majikal shield around it. This is where my main character, 18-year-old Myrna leads the other six Vigorios. These are the teenaged demon hunters prophesied to defeat the demons in the final battle between the Seraphym and Demons. On the island they will train with the Majikals and finish assembling the army. But just because something is prophesied doesn’t mean it will come to pass. And that is what the Vigorios are finding out.

Amber: Would you write Fantasy, even if no one read it? 

Rebecca: Yes, absolutely. I write it for me. If others want to read my books that’s awesome, but I’m the one that has to be happy with the story first.

Rebecca Ryals Russell lives in a Victorian house on five acres with her family. She also runs a Vacation Rental Log House on the property. She is a fourth generation Floridian. She was born in Gainesville (Central Fl), grew up in Sunrise (South Florida), lived in Orlando (Central Fl) and Jacksonville (NE Fl) before settling outside Lake City (North Central Fl). 

The daughter of a school principal and school secretary, for fourteen years she taught Middle Grades, preferring English and Creative Writing. She had several students’ works published in anthologies.  Her main interests are her four children and hubby of 35 years, writing, drawing, gardening, movies, reading.

As a Young Adult and Middle Grade author she has only just gotten started. Her debut book comes out April 2011, then nearly every month another book is slated for release.

Seraphym Wars Series: Odessa releases April 1, 2011 from MuseItUp Publishing
The MG series Stardust Warriors Zarena is scheduled for July 1, 2011 from MuseItUp. 
This is a MG version of the Seraphym Wars story. 

Other releases for next year include: Stardust Warriors Jeremiah scheduled for September 1, 2011; Seraphym Wars Prequel Conscientia November 1, 2011; a horror story Don’t Make Marty Mad October 1, 2011; and Stardust Warriors Laman due out February 1, 2012. I’m waiting to hear about Seraphym Wars Book 2 Harpies and Stardust Warriors Books 4 and 5, Mercy and Magaelbash
All books will be available on Amazon, Smashwords, as well as many other sites.

To find our more about books by Rebecca Ryals Russell  
And her blog for additional information about writing,
random ramblings
and anything that strikes her funny bone.
Rebecca also participates in a grog (group blog)
Teen Word Factory
written by a group of MG/YA Authors, 
who write about how to write for teens, 
NaNoWriMo, interviews and more. 


  1. Amber, Thank you so much for inviting me into your blog today.

  2. The book sounds amazing. Great creativity! It's on my list of BTR:)

  3. Always interesting to read what motivates wrtiers to write what we do. Interesting interview.

  4. Very cool cover. I wish Rebecca the best of luck with the book.

  5. Great interview, Rebecca and Amber! I agree about writing for yourself. I didn't realize this so clearly until a month of marketing made me yearn to write, and write, and write more...a way to reconnect to me.

    Wishing you all the luck with your release!

  6. Love the interview, Rebecca and Amber. That's why I write fantasy. Thank you for the clarification!

  7. "I devoured Lord of the Rings, every Anne McCaffrey book written, the Sword of Shannara series by Terry Brooks, I loved the Dark Tower series by Stephen King and read many of David Eddings series."

    Looks like you were sneaking into my library ... lol.

    These same books are why I went to art school to become a cover artist/illustrator.

    Totally cool!

    Aidana WillowRaven