Damsels in distress, curses, echoes of faery tales and tragic love affairs swirl together in sixteen stories found in a dragon’s lair by a curious half-fae.
Unexpected changes to reality causes more than one damsel to turn into a strong, independent woman who takes charge of her own life.
A collection of short stories about Faerie and the fae that live in the human realm. A few of the stories had won competitions and all of them had enchanted readers.
Learn their secrets and enter the realm of the fae…
Hello book lovers! Today is a day where I will be writing another author spotlight for a well-accomplished author whose work I have loved. As you know book lovers I love learning about authors and the inspiration behind their work, it fascinates me and adds to the depth of the book because the reader will be able to better understand it. That is how the author spotlights were created because I soon discovered that you lovely readers ALSO love learning about author’s, so I am excited to tell you a little bit more about author Ronel Janse van Vuuren whose book Once: Tales, Myths and Legends of Faerie captivated me from beginning to end. I personally would recommend this book to all of those that love fantasy as well as myths and legends but really the book can be read by anybody as it is flawlessly written and highly enjoyable. With today’s author spotlight for Ronel Janse van Vuuren, a biography of the author and an interview between me and Ronel Janse van Vuuren will be shared, and I hope that you book lovers enjoy reading it! To kick this off here is an author bio about the wonderful Ronel Janse van Vuuren!
Ronel Janse van Vuuren is the author of New Adult, Young Adult and children’s fiction filled with mythology and folklore. Her dark fantasy stories can be read for free on Wattpad and on her blog Ronel the Mythmaker. She won Fiction Writer of the Year 2016 for her Afrikaans stories on INK: Skryf in Afrikaans. Her published works can be viewed on Goodreads.
Ronel can be found tweeting about writing and other things that interest her, arguing with her characters, researching folklore for her newest story or playing with her Rottweilers when she’s not actually writing.
All of her books are available for purchase from all major online retailers.
Now, how wonderful does Ronel Janse van Vuuren sound?! Ronel Janse van Vuuren is a truly exceptional writer and I hope that you lovely readers have a read of Ronel Janse van Vuuren’s work because you will not regret it! Please see below an interview between me and Ronel Janse van Vuuren, I hope that you enjoy Ronel Janse van Vuuren’s answers to my questions, they are incredible and provide some great advice too!
Thank you for joining us today at Red Headed Book Lover! Please tell us more about yourself.
Thanks for having me, Aimee. Let’s see… I’m a Rottweiler pack leader, composting fan, horse servant (my haughty mares look down on my obsessive cleaning of their pasture and stable), folklore enthusiast, people watcher, and author of dark fantasy.
Could you please tell us readers about your book and what inspired you to write your book?
I’ve been playing around with the world-building of Faerie for a very long time, changing and adding things as stories developed, characters evolved and amazing ideas tackled me from the recesses of my mind. But going from one series to the next, there’s a gap in understanding why things changed and how it happened. So I started to write the stories that happened behind the scenes of the novels. In “Once…”, I tried to incorporate as many elements of the diverse world I created as possible to give readers a taste of what they can expect in future novels. A few of the stories tell the real story behind a folktale (like Rapunzel) while others are the history of Faerie itself.
What gave me the push I needed to compile them all into one book was a publishing competition held by Groep 7 Printers and INK: Skryf in Afrikaans (Write in Afrikaans) in 2017. I polished my stories in Afrikaans, submitted it and forgot about it. Then I won. From that moment on I knew it was meant to be read by as many people as possible, so I rewrote it in English and published it.
What would your advice be for aspiring writers?
Don’t give up. There are loads of resources out there – free and paid – to help you become the best writer you can be. Also, join a writing community (like the Insecure Writer’s Support Group) because writing can be a lonely business and talking to other writers can put things in perspective. I have loads of advice over on my blog Ronel the Mythmaker that goes into various subjects about the writing life.
In your opinion, what is the most important thing about a book?
The characters. You can have lyrical writing and a fine plot, but without someone to care about, there’s no point.
What is your writing process like?
I pick a project (I have loads of ideas on file), decide on characters, do research, plot the whole thing out, then I start to write. I prefer writing in notebooks – fewer distractions. I type it up, print it out, rewrite, type, proofread and then send it out to beta readers. Then there’s a whole round of rewrites again before the editing stuff and publishing prep starts.
What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?
I love folklore. So much so that I sometimes do research on creatures just for the fun of it – and share it on my blog. I love digging deep into the origins of a folktale – did you know that the Cinderella tale can be found all over the globe and as far back as 221 BC China? Before writing a story, I first decide on the characters (the main characters, the villains, the supporting characters) and who/what they will be. If I don’t have a creature on file, I’ll research it (and it’ll usually end up on my blog). And then, I write.
Do you have a set schedule for writing, or do you only write when you feel inspired?
In an ideal world, I’d write in the mornings and do non-fiction stuff (like blogging) in the afternoons. In the real world, I get obsessive about a project and forget about everything else. As long as I stick to my to-do list for the week/month, I’m a happy writer.
Do your stories carry a message?
Absolutely. Dark fantasy is all about examining the human condition, looking at the consequences of actions and decisions, and how the beliefs we hold can change the way we see our world. I think “Rumour Has It”, “New Divide” and “Castle of Glass” depicts all of this from different points of view about the same moment in Faerie history very well.
Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?
Of course! As Stephen King said: if you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time or the tools to write. I try to read two books a week and publish my reviews on Goodreads; it’s a way to keep myself accountable and give others a good idea of what I like to read. My favourite authors include Holly Black, Karen Marie Moning, Rick Riordan, Julie Kagawa, JF Penn and Melissa Marr.
Lastly, when can we readers expect to read more wonderful books from you?
Well, this year I have a short story in the Clarion Call anthology “Fairy Tale Riot” called “The Inn” coming out (end of October, I believe). It’s a retelling of “Fitcher’s Bird” with a whole lot of fae getting into trouble.
In January I’m planning on publishing the short story that was in the previous Clarion Call anthology “Unbound”. “Black Moon” has Valkyries and Furies fighting over the souls of the dead… It’ll be up for sale as an ebook on all online retailers.
I’m hoping to have a novella ready for May and another novella ready for November, both filled with folklore.
And in 2020 I’m publishing my entire series in “The Adventures of Saphira the Faery Dog”. But, ah, let’s keep that between us 😉
Other projects are in the works, of course, but I have no control over their publication dates.
In the meantime, check out my free ebook “Unseen” when you sign up for my newsletter. There are three connected short stories filled with folklore surrounding Samhain and the Winter Solstice with quick explanations of the folklore at the end of the book.
Its official book lovers, I am obsessed with Ronel Janse van Vuuren! If you have liked what you have read about Ronel Janse van Vuuren and are interested in learning more about Ronel Janse van Vuuren and reading Ronel Janse van Vuuren’s work, then please do have a browse of the links below and be sure to have a read of the preview too! You will not regret it.
Goodbye for now book lovers,