Today’s my stop on the blog tour for His Frozen Fingertips, which is hosted by the lovely people over at Bookollective! They were kind enough to put me in touch with the author so I’ve got a Q&A to share with you all.
1. As a young author, did you find it challenging at all to write your novel alongside school and recreational activities?
I found it quite easy to fit in alongside school and extra-curricular activities because they all take place during the school day, but I had to sacrifice a lot of my social life in order to stick to a regular writing schedule. It was a lot of work but I found that this was easier than trying to juggle both my schoolwork and my writing and I already saw my friends fairly often so nothing really changed. That said, I didn’t hand in much homework whilst I was writing my book, so that probably made it easier for me to fit everything in.
2. This is your debut novel! What were some of the most exciting and challenging aspects of publishing your first book?
A lot more work goes into getting published than I had ever expected. Getting a website was very exciting for me, as was the first time that I held a copy of my book. These were the parts that made me feel like I was finally a proper author, and that is one of the best feelings in the world. As for challenging aspects of publishing, I think it’s hard to establish an online presence and to keep my social media active as I am quite introverted. I knew that I needed to talk to editors and publicists, but I never imagined that I would put so much effort into blogging and promoting myself online.
3. His Frozen Fingertips is a YA Fantasy novel; were there any other fantasy stories that inspired you while writing?
William Nicholson’s ‘Wind on Fire’ trilogy has been one of my favourite YA fantasies since I was quite young, I really enjoyed all three books due to their vivid characters and settings. Of course, being born in 1999, Harry Potter was a large part of my early childhood. J.K. Rowling’s accessible but intricate writing is something that I aspire to, as well as how immersive her world-building is. I loved J.R.R Tolkien’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘Silmarillion’, but I can’t ever see myself committing to his level of detail, bearing in mind that my language-building skills are negligible in comparison to his.
4. What was your favourite scene to write and why? (Without giving away spoilers, of course!)
I enjoyed writing about the underground city of Jundres because it was something that I thought of when doing GCSE revision on the adaptations of the star-nosed mole. I wondered what it would be like if humans were able to build such warren-like structures, and found out about a lot of partially subterranean cities when I researched the matter. However, the idea of living entirely without access to natural light is something that stuck with me so I was really pleased that I got to imagine it and put it in the novel.
5. Friendship and companionship are important themes in the book, what motivated you to write about these topics?
It’s important to show that boys can have the same close friendships as girls can, since many don’t think that this is something their gender does. I like to try different things in how I present gender in my writing since I’m a feminist and believe a truly equal society is one without stereotypical gender roles. I also like the idea of companionship because two friends will often be stronger than a lone hero due to the added motivation and reassurance that a partner can provide.
6. And finally, do you have any plans for future novels and if so can you give us a few hints about what they might be?
I want to explore the topic of non-binary genders and my current novel is looking at this through the eyes of a group of fairies in eighteenth century England. It sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is, but this premise allows me to develop my writing style and forces me to constantly re-evaluate how I’m presenting different characters and situations. I’m not yet sure if this is a personal project or something that I actually want to publish. However, since I want to commit to my A-levels, I don’t even want to look at publishers and agents until at least a year from now.
Charlotte Bowyer finished writing her debut novel, His Frozen Fingertips, at the age of fifteen. The story follows Asa, a young man who, after finding out he has a potentially-fatal heart condition, is enlisted by the Queen to fight a corrupt sorcerer. Charlotte loves fantasy and is a firm believer in freedom of expression and diversity. She attends Pride in London on an annual basis, and is a vocal feminist.
Check out the other blog stops on the tour!