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AUTHOR INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Ginn Hale

Boys in our Books is THRILLED and PROUD to welcome Ginn Hale to the blog! Sheri & Xing (big, big, big fans of the Rifter Series) take a stab at getting to know this talented writer. But first…

GIVEAWAY

We will be giving away the ALL TEN books of the Rifter series by Ginn Hale!  Press the “rafflecopter” link below for multiple chances to enter! GOOD LUCK!  (winner will be announced June 23, 2014)

select here ->   a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rifter Book One.indd book2 book3 book4 book5

book6 book7 book8 book9 book10

Sheri: I have a secret to confess. I don’t like crossing the line from anonymous reader to chit-chatty fangirl. Nope. I prefer to keep my nose in my book and avoid eye-contact with the author. So I cannot fathom what came over me when I closed my kindle after this intense series came to an end *sobs* and I sent the mastermind behind it all a message. I blame my book buzz (honest to goodness, my entire body felt like it was vibrating) and after I came back down, I panicked. What did I do? Ginn Hale visiting our blog? *begins to hyperventilate*  Well, I phoned my dear friend Xing and together we (nearly) kept each other from passing out from excitement. Advanced apologies to all for any gushing that may (will) occur.

Xing: When Sheri messaged me that she got an okay to interview THE Ginn Hale, my face exploded (figuratively). And then, she asked for my help with coming up with questions, which felt like Christmas came early (and I wasn’t expecting any presents, since I’ve been naughty as of late). Where was I going with this? Oh, yeah. So, I had the opportunity to ask questions. To an author. To my favorite author of all time. *casually cleans up my Ginn Hale shrine* Anyways, I am so excited to have this interrog…interview with you! I’m a bit nervous, but excited to pick your (wonderful) brain and to hopefully get more people on The Rifter bandwagon (and ultimately to your other works).

 

Without further ado….Welcome Ginn Hale!

GH—You guys are way too kind! Thank you for having me!

 

Sheri: The Shattered Gates was a large buddy read for me and my friends. I relied heavily on Rifter veterans, *gives Xing a squeeze* but found bits of it confusing while reading. Though I enjoyed it, your unique language was especially challenging for me. Any advice to newbies wishing to begin this journey or those simply frustrated/confused after reading book one?

GH — Hmmm. I guess I’d have to misquote the X-files and reassure the reader that ‘the answers are out there’… but some won’t show up until book ten… unless you hunt down Xing!

I tried to include dictionaries and maps where I could to help readers along and I hid a few clues in some of the additional matter. (The print books have even more information, as well as a holiday coda.)

But I totally understand if it all seems overwhelming at first. The story and world are big and complex and in the beginning there are a great number of unknowns, which take time to resolve. (I’m still not sure of what I was thinking, inventing a language—crazy.) 

If it’s any help, there’s a group on goodreads that probably knows the Rifter better than I do. Questions can be posted there, or any reader can always contact me. ginn@ginnhale.com. I’m happy to answer questions or just to send off PDFs of the dictionaries and maps. (Sometimes the digital books don’t seem to have them.)

 

Xing: Since I’m a stalker at heart, I remember you mentioning The Rifter took five years to write. Five years! Within that time-span, you’ve managed to craft a very engrossing world, create engaging characters, and develop a story that is both original and breath taking in its complexity and resolution. But my question to you is: where did it all start? Or in other words, what gave you that first spark of motivation to write this series that took five years to orchestrate?

GH— Believe it or not the very first spark came from a dream I had when I was still in college. It involved a hunt for this person who didn’t know it but was a destroyer god who brought down ruin on every one around but always survived. It was a very violent and vivid dream—I can still remember one bit that took place inside a school bus as it tumbled off a cliff. 

Needless to say, no god-hunters purposefully crash a school bus just to find the one surviving godling hiding among the dead bodies of the mortal children who were his classmates in this version of the book. (Though I might use that for a future novel.)

But other images—like the Hungry Bones and the Gray Spaces– stuck with me and inspired me to keep coming back to the idea. Eventually I worked out an outline and started writing.

 

Sheri: If I had to describe your writing with one word, it would be…gorgeous. It definitely conflicted with the harsh and violent world you’ve created. As the blog’s scaredy cat, I think my heart stopped a few times (Xing: mine definitely did!). For me, I realized this series was much more than a stunning fantasy. What would you like our wary, non-fantasy lovers to know about The Rifter?

GH— Well, first I suppose I’d reassure them that the print volumes (The Shattered Gates, The Holy Road and His Sacred Bones) can be had for free from a library. So there’s no need to fear committing cash.

Then I guess I’d assure them that despite the fantastical elements the story is really a meditation upon how human relationships—be they loving or hurtful—shape both people and societies. While the story features magic, gods and time travel, it isn’t about any of those things: it’s actually about two isolated, lonely people who grow to love one another and in doing so, change each other and a world.

That said, I’d be the last person to push a non-fantasy reader into a book that didn’t appeal. The same themes might speak more perfectly to him or her in another book.

 

Xing: I remember reading about how you planned John and Khalil’s timelines on a 18 x 24 sheet of newsprint. It seemed like you’ve done an awful lot of planning prior to writing the series, which was evident in the plot’s execution. Despite all the planning, was the end product what you expected from the very beginning?

GH— Hmmm…As far as the structure of the story and characters go the final books are quite close to what I planned… Except that I had somehow imagined that I could build and write the entire thing in something like 400 pages.

Was I ever in for a surprise!

In reality it took me 1000 plus pages.

 

Sheri: Your characters are exquisite, incredibly complex and deeply layered. I understand a favorite might be out of the question, but do you connect with one more than another?

GH—I’m really glad you liked the characters!

John and Kahlil are based on real friends of mine so I can’t help but love and understand them best. (And I will totally take them out to dinner when the next royalty check comes in!)

But the characters I worked most on feeling connections with and understanding were the antagonists: Dayyid, Fikiri, Laurie and Ourath.

I often reminded myself that from Fikiri’s point of view, John is a monster. He utterly destroyed Fikiri’s family and life. John used Ourath and broke his heart. And from Dayyid’s point of view, he’s totally right about both John and Ravishan: they destroy his entire world!

Laurie, on the other hand, parallels John in her ambition and motivation. She’s driven by immense loss and an unwavering love—she would sacrifice everything and endure anything to save Bill and their child.

Laurie’s motive is heroic, even if her means become horrific.

From their own points of view each of the “villains” could have been written as a tragic hero, really. Remembering that helped me to keep them human, I think.

 

Xing: What was the most difficult part about writing the series?

GH—Writing it. :)

It’s surprising how tough it can be to just make yourself sit down day after day for five years to plug away at the same story.

 

Sheri: Once I hit book five my vision cleared and suddenly everything began to fall into place. I would love to see John & Kyle on the big screen. Xing: YES! I believe all my favorite books/series should be made into a movie, I am curious…who would you cast as some of the characters in The Rifter?!

GH—That’s a tough question!

I tend to think that what makes books great is that each reader gets to make his or her own perfect cast… So I’d hate to ruin anyone else’s idea of who the characters are… .

I personally kind of imagine John as looking like Chris Hemsworth and Kyle more like Daniel Henney but then I got the idea to try and cast gay/bi actors just to see who was “out” there.

So far I’ve got Wentworth Miller—as a blond— making out with Matt Bomer in the roles of John and Kyle.

Zachary Quinto giving them the scowling of a lifetime as Dayyid.

John Barrowman could be Alidas in the later arcs of the books while Jonathan Bennett played him in the earlier ones.

Maybe Chad Allen would kick ass as the adult Fikiri.

Neil Patrick Harris would make a hilarious Hann’yu!

Portia de Rossi would be awesome as Laurie.

And Wanda Sykes could have any and all parts she wanted—because I love her!

Sadly, no matter how many dog actors I google I can’t seem to find one who seems like he/she could play Ji—never mind the matter of orientation, just think of all the dialogue there would be to memorize. :)

 

Xing: I like to believe every book I love carries a lasting message. After I finished reading The Rifter, I came away with the feeling that things happen for a reason. That while the individual events in our lives might not mean much to us, it can serve as part of something much bigger and purposeful in the lives of others. If there was one message you want readers to walk away with after finishing The Rifter, what would it be?

GH— I wrote the books while contemplating how powerfully one human being can impact the lives of all those surrounding him or her.

We aren’t all gods who can split the earth in two, but in each of our day-to-day actions we effect the people and world around us. Being aware of that allows us each to be more conscious of the harm or good that we can do. It might be nothing more than just taking a minute to offer a stranger directions or giving away spare change but every action produces ripples of effects.

But if readers find other themes that speak to them I wouldn’t dream of arguing…because those themes are there for that reader.

We each bring our own perspectives and insights to books and often completely different aspects of a story will resonate for one person and not another. Fiction can be a bit like a Rorschach test: each of us discerning a different reading from the same words. And I find that kind of wonderful.

 

Sheri: Our BioB team holds several die-hard fans of yours. Can you give us a sneak peak as to what shiny new stories we have to look forward to?

GH—I’m in the final edits of Champion of the Scarlet Wolf, which is the sequel to Lord of the White Hell. The digital editions should be coming out this fall.

The story follows Elezar out of a Cadeleonian prison on to a secret mission in the northlands where witches and mythical creatures still endure despite the Cadeleonian church. Of course he soon crosses paths with a wild and ambitious young man who tempts him into far more than just his bed.

Duels will be fought, demons battled, trolls awoken, a kingdom seized and at least one dog will be washed! :D

 

*clings to Xing to prevent tackle hugging*

Ginn, it was our great pleasure having you here…thank you for indulging us.

GH—Thank you for having me. This was really fun!

 

Ginn Hale can be found at: 

WebsiteGoodreads, Facebook

40 comments on “AUTHOR INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Ginn Hale

  1. Shirley Ann Speakman
    June 14, 2014

    Great interview I liked the part where Ginn chose the actors to play the parts of the characters in the books.

    ShirleyAnn(at)speakman40(dot)freeserve(dot)co(dot)uk

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 14, 2014

      Thanks!
      I’m not sure I’ll ever be a great director but it was a delight to try my hand at it!

      Like

  2. ginnhale
    June 14, 2014

    I wanted to thank everyone at Boys in our Books for the interview and also for doing so much to share and promote our “genre”!

    Like

    • Sheri
      June 14, 2014

      THANK YOU for taking the time (even with your fetching cast slowing you down) to visit. I’m very much looking forward to your next adventure of trolls and demons.

      Liked by 1 person

      • ginnhale
        June 15, 2014

        I’ll do my best to make it a fun book!
        Hopefully the cast will be off soon and I’ll be able to use both hands to get my edits done. :)

        Like

  3. Hannah B.
    June 14, 2014

    What a great interview, I really enjoyed learning more about Ginn. I especially liked Ginn’s statement: “We aren’t all gods who can split the earth in two, but in each of our day-to-day actions we effect the people and world around us. Being aware of that allows us each to be more conscious of the harm or good that we can do. ” How very true. Thanks for the opportunity to win this fabulous giveaway.

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      The questions were really good ones and a lot of fun to answer. I don’t often talk about the ideas behind fantasy novels, so it was great to get the chance.

      Like

  4. Vicky Golar
    June 14, 2014

    I’ve been looking at GR comments, on this series, for a while. For some reason, I haven’t been brave enough… Now I am. Thanks guys and gals!

    Like

    • Sheri
      June 14, 2014

      I needed a little hand holding myself and I am available to return the favor if and when you need it. :)

      Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      I’d be pretty shy of picking up a 10 book series myself! I commend your courage :)
      (And obviously I really hope you have a good time with the story!)

      Like

  5. H.B.
    June 14, 2014

    Awesome interview and I’m looking forward to seeing Champion of the Scarlet Wolf when it gets published.

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      Credit for the interview has to go to Xing and Sheri, they made it a joy.

      I’m getting a bit excited about Champion myself–I just got a peek at the book cover designs, which is always a thrill for an author, I think. I’m starting to feel like the fall release is just around the corner!

      Like

  6. readmorromance
    June 14, 2014

    Wow! Great interview, very insightful. I cannot believe it took 5 years…but then again as long and detailed as it seems I guess I can. :) I don’t know how I missed this series but I will be correcting that error.
    Thanks for sharing with us.
    your fan,
    jo
    johannasnodgrass(at)yahoo(dot)com

    Liked by 1 person

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      Yes, if I’d known it would take so long I’m not sure I would have had the courage to commit to the project. :)
      That said, I’m glad that I went through with it.

      Like

  7. sula22
    June 14, 2014

    I enjoyed reading this article, especially the part about which actors could play the roles of the characters in the Rifter series. Thank you Sheri, Zing and Ginn.

    Liked by 1 person

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      Casting the characters was pretty fun– I also liked the idea of imagining the books as animated films and how very different they could be coming out of different studios.
      The Miyazaki Rifter vs Pixar or stop-motion–which would create the cutest design for Ji? :)

      Like

  8. jenf27
    June 14, 2014

    I liked reading that the series started as a dream and also the actors who could play the characters. Thanks for the post and giveaway!

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      Yes I sometimes wonder what I might have written if I hadn’t remembered that one dream…maybe a 10 book epic about realizing I was at work but not wearing my pants? :)

      Like

  9. Eisheth
    June 14, 2014

    Great interview! I’m definitely a fangirl, gobbling up everything Ginn Hale I can get my paws on. I’ll be taking the day off work whenever Champion of the Scarlet Wolf comes out, so I can dive right in… CAN’T WAIT!

    Liked by 1 person

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      It won’t be long now, I promise! (I’m not just saying that because my editor might read it :) )

      Like

  10. Amanda
    June 14, 2014

    Thanks Ginn, Xing, and Sheri!

    I like the advice for us newbies. The series sounds great, and I’m glad there are veterans (and author) around to help guide me when I get a little lost :)

    Liked by 1 person

  11. lamoiti
    June 14, 2014

    Great interview and thanks for the giveaway.

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      So glad you enjoyed it. (Good luck on the giveaway!)

      Like

  12. katinka
    June 15, 2014

    This is rad, great interview! Can’t wait to take the time and slowly devour the Rifter series.:)

    Like

  13. Michelle
    June 15, 2014

    I enjoyed the interview. I liked your thoughts on the series’ villians who, with a change in perspective, could be tragic heroes. Interesting! Thanks for the giveaway.

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      Antagonists are always tricky, I think, because they need to have believable motivations and yet if they are too justified the readers alliances can shift to them.

      (Am I the only one who kind of thought Khan was sort of justified in Into Darkness? Or maybe Benedict Cumberbatch is just a very emotive actor.)

      Like

  14. Barb
    June 15, 2014

    Great interview! ! All kindsa awesomeness right there! Love everything Ginn 💜

    Like

    • ginnhale
      June 15, 2014

      I adore you right back, Barb!
      (Seriously, you rock!)

      Like

  15. Aimee
    June 15, 2014

    Great interview! I’ve been saving this series for a long time >.< Can't wait to start it.

    Like

  16. Allison
    June 15, 2014

    I don’t know how I haven’t read any of Ms. Hale’s books but I’d love to get the chance to try them out. And what was my favorite part of the interview? This: “Sadly, no matter how many dog actors I google I can’t seem to find one who seems like he/she could play Ji—never mind the matter of orientation, just think of all the dialogue there would be to memorize. :)” Because I love dogs and I love that she mentioned it. I am grinning!

    Like

  17. Carly - RuralMom
    June 15, 2014

    I’m amazed at the dedication that it took to stick to writing a story for 5 YEARS!!!! I also love the glasses. :D

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Carolyn
    June 16, 2014

    I not only loved the message you share (personal belief of my own), Ginn, but I’m glad you are happy for readers to find their own message. That whole section was such a lovely answer. Great interview all around, especially for someone like me who’s first being introduced to you and your writing. Thanks for sharing with us all!

    Like

  19. Ashley E
    June 16, 2014

    1000+ pages? I’m hooked just hearing the length of it. Is that bad of me? I just hate leaving a world behind once I fall in love…

    Like

  20. EdC
    June 16, 2014

    Really happy that we’ll be seeing how Elezar comes to terms with himself soon! But hoping for some Kiram/Jaiver cameos too :).

    Like

  21. rojoroaors
    June 16, 2014

    thank you I have not read any of the rifter series but loved some of your others liek lord of white hell

    Like

  22. Neil Moser
    June 18, 2014

    Ginn’s writing has kept my partner riveted. He usually prefers non-fiction, but Basawar has pulled him in. Thank again to Ginn for not just writing enjoyable fantasy, but for writing a truly compelling story.

    Like

  23. Pingback: “Rifter” Series by Ginn Hale

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