New Project Reveal – Part 6: Why did I write this book?

Hello gentle reader,

this week again I’m taking part in the Thursday’s Children meme hosted by Rhiann Wynn-Nolet and Kristina Perez. It is “a weekly blog hop where writers come together to talk about whatever inspires them.”


In these posts, I share a little bit more about what I’ve been working on, a YA Historical Fantasy entitled LILY IN THE SHADOWS.

LILY is currently in the hands of its first beta readers, and this week I’ve asked myself “why did I write this book?” “What was the writing motivation behind it?”

Then I came across the answer in an anthology of Gaslamp Fantasy short stories I have been reading…

Queen Victoria's Book of Spells

“The enthusiasm for Steampunk has produced some marvellous, incisive writing, and some gorgeous pieces of art. But it has also glamorized the Victorian era and too often ignored the exploitation and immiseration of the working class of England as well as the inhabitants of the lands England sought to rule. The fiery, corseted heroines, the eccentric but brilliant inventors, the rakish and charming younger sons — the wealth and comfort of these few depended on the suffering of many, many people. Even the wealthy of the 19th Century suffered, of course, in an era prior to antibiotics and most of the vaccinations we take for granted today. (…) It’s easy to forget how the people who indulged in afternoon tea rituals, admired clockwork-powered inventions, and wore shapely and beautiful corsets and bustles profited from the death and suffering of others every time they lit a candle. (…) And it’s easy to wonder how those people, who considered themselves so civilized, could have accepted the price others paid for their comfort and wealth.”

Veronica Schanoes, “Phosphorus” in Queen Victoria’s Book of Spells, An Anthology of Gaslamp Fantasy edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

This is EXACTLY why I wrote Lily In The Shadows. I wanted to write the story of an obscure flower girl, with no special power or talent, who tries to save the city of London from chaos and destruction. Lily lives in East London, she is partly deaf and she has no hope of ever marrying a king and becoming a princess in a fairy tale. But to me, it doesn’t mean her story shouldn’t be told. Every girl has a story to tell, even in the shadows.

So what made you want to write your Work In Progress? What inspired you this week? Feel free to leave me a comment below, and to visit the other Thursday’s Children posts here.

12 thoughts on “New Project Reveal – Part 6: Why did I write this book?

  1. sugaropal says:

    I think modern first world society is not much less guilty than the Victorian elite in some very real sense… But anyway, without giving away too much about my WIP, one of them falls into a particular category of oft-forgotten victims and the other is a fascinating and freaky piece of baggage. I wanted to throw them together to watch what happens, to see if they can “fix” each other in some ways, and to see how much harm they might do to each other in the process.

  2. I agree totally with that quote, and with Rhiann that it still goes on. Easier not to think about the sweatshop that produces our cheap goods. But I can’t tell you how much I love the idea of the Lily in the Shadows – it’s a great idea and I can’t wait until it’s ready to share…

  3. Kate Frost says:

    I love the sound of Lily in the Shadows. I think the underdogs of society always make for more interesting stories.

  4. I’m very excited to see Lily in Like a Virgin!

  5. ddfalvo says:

    Your Lily sounds precious and rare. Love the idea of your premise. 😀

  6. I am totally in-love with everything about your story and just from this small blurb!

    A too-close-for-comfort story of bullying as well as a stroll through a corn maze inspired my current WiP…I love how ideas come together!

  7. Karen Rought says:

    Love this! The heroes journey is a classic, but being the Chosen One has been done a hundred times over. I love the idea of a normal person being normal and still saving the day.

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