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Charlaine Harris: On Shifting Perspectives in a Fantasy Series

New York Times bestselling author Charlaine Harris discusses the shift in point of view with her new fantasy novel, The Serpent in Heaven.

Charlaine Harris is a New York Times bestselling author who has been writing for over 30 years. She was born and raised in the Mississippi River Delta area. She has written four series and two stand-alone novels, in addition to numerous short stories, novellas, and graphic novels (co-written with Christopher Golden).

Her Sookie Stackhouse books have appeared in 25 different languages and on many bestseller lists. They’re also the basis of the HBO series True Blood. Harris now lives in Texas, and when she is not writing her own books, she reads omnivorously. Her house is full of rescue dogs. Find her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Charlaine Harris: On Shifting Perspectives in a Fantasy Series

Charlaine Harris

In this post, Charlaine discusses the shift in point of view with her new fantasy novel, The Serpent in Heaven, her hope for readers, and more!

Name: Charlaine Harris
Literary agent: Joshua Bilmes @ JABberwocky
Book title: The Serpent in Heaven
Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Saga Press
Release date: November 15, 2022
Genre/category: Fantasy
Previous titles: Gunnie Rose series; A Novel of Midnight, Texas series; A Sookie Stackhouse Novel series; An Aurora Teagarden Mystery series; A Lily Bard Mystery series; Harper Connelly Mysteries; The Cemetery Girls Trilogy (with Christopher Golden); Sweet and Deadly; A Secret Rage
Elevator pitch for the book: #1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Charlaine Harris returns to her alternate history of the United States where magic is an acknowledged but despised power in this fourth installment of the Gunnie Rose series.

Charlaine Harris: On Shifting Perspectives in a Fantasy Series

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What prompted you to write this book?

I’m continuing my Gunnie Rose series, but with a point-of-view switch. Instead of Lizbeth Rose’s voice, this is her half-sister’s, Felicia, who is about 15 and a student in San Diego, now part of the Holy Russian Empire.

How long did it take to go from idea to publication? And did the idea change during the process?

Because of COVID delays, this book (which should have appeared in February 2022) will now be on the shelves November 15, so it will be a year and a half after the previous book in the series. But the change of characters was a plan I’d had all along.

Were there any surprises or learning moments in the publishing process for this title?

Publishing is always a learning process. Though the copywriter’s remarks are always excruciating (why didn’t I get everything right the first time?) it’s completely necessary, and never more so than for this book.

Charlaine Harris: On Shifting Perspectives in a Fantasy Series

Were there any surprises in the writing process for this book?

I had thought I would have a hard time wriggling into the skin of a teenage girl. It was horribly easy to do! But Felicia is much braver and more resourceful than I ever was at that age.

What do you hope readers will get out of your book?

I hope they’ll get a sense of adventure, experience the difficulties of being treated as an invisible person at one moment and the advantages of literally being invisible at another.

If you could share one piece of advice with other writers, what would it be?

Though my way of writing is unwieldy and inconvenient, it’s my way, the only way I can do it. No two people write a book the same way, and that’s just fine … as long as you finish.

Revision and Self Editing

Every writer knows that the journey to publication is a long and hard road. Once you finish your first draft, it’s time to start the arduous process of self-editing and revision. When you take this online writing course you will learn methods of self-editing for fiction writers to ensure your writing is free of grammatical errors.

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