Welcome to my stop on the Chapter by Chapter tour for The Dragons of Nova, the latest book in Elise Kova’s amazing Loom Saga. You can find the complete tour schedule here. This week there will be reviews, spotlights, interviews, and guest posts. Be sure to check out each stop to view a different take, a new guest post, and a chance to win a hardcover copy of The Dragons of Nova plus a swag pack!
For my stop today, Elise answers a question I was really curious to know: You’ve lived all over the world. How have your various living situations inspired your books, whether in style or in content?
“If you live an ordinary life, all you’ll have are ordinary stories.” – Aurora (Passengers)
While I found Passengers to be a disappointing at best and problematic movie at worst, this quote was the one silver lining for the entire film for me because it resonated so true to everything I’ve known.
No story, even the most fantastical, is created in a vacuum, and our experiences in life influence and shape what we have to say in our narrative and why. While I was born and raised in Florida, I was lucky enough to grow up traveling the world both with my family and alone. I’ve been to five continents, over fifteen different countries, and had the opportunity to live, work, and study in Japan.
It’s natural that these experiences — the things I saw, smelled, and tasted — work their way both consciously and subconsciously into my work. I can try to pick apart my stories and see how traveling influenced my narrative both in obvious ways, like inspirations, and less obvious ways, like wanting to tell a certain story while I was in a certain place.
That all being said, I think the biggest thing that traveling and living abroad has helped with when it comes to writing is how little we, as individuals, know about others and their cultures.
I’ve spent years living in Japan, I studied in in school as an Asian Studies minor, I’ve studied the language, and I wouldn’t say I’m much further into understanding the culture than the tip of the iceberg. Culture shapes every aspect of who we are and what we do in ways that we don’t consciously realize. So when I sit down to build characters and worlds, I try to take this into account.
Do the characters even realize themselves why they think or act in a certain way? How has history shaped them? How do different cultures interact?
When it comes to traveling, I think the largest benefit I’ve seen as an author is learning how to ask the right questions when it comes to building my worlds. If I reach the right answers… well, that ultimately comes down to my readers, but I always think I have more work to do.
by Elise Kova
Publication Date: July 11, 2017
Publisher: Keymaster Press
Cvareh returns home to his sky world of Nova with the genius crafter Arianna as his temperamental guest. The mercurial inventor possesses all the Xin family needs to turn the tides of a centuries-old power struggle, but the secrets she harbors must be earned with trust — hard to come by for Ari, especially when it comes to Dragons. On Nova, Ari finds herself closer to exacting vengeance against the traitor who killed everything — and everyone – she once loved. But before Ari can complete her campaign of revenge, the Crimson Court exposes her shadowed past and reveals something even more dangerous sparking between her and Cvareh.
While Nova is embroiled in blood sport and political games, the rebels on Loom prepare for an all-out assault on their Dragon oppressors. Florence unexpectedly finds herself at the forefront of change, as her unique blend of skills — and quick-shooting accuracy — makes her a force to be reckoned with. For the future of her world, she vows vengeance against the Dragons.
Before the rebellion can rise, though, the Guilds must fall.
Hard cover copy of The Dragons of Nova by Elise Kova and a swag pack
Other Books in the Loom Saga
About the Author
Elise Kova has always had a profound love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the real world long enough to graduate with a Master’s in Business Administration before crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when she is not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media. She is the USA Today bestselling author of the Air Awakens Series as well as the Loom Saga.