♦Welcome to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop!♦
Controversial topics, industry news, parallels between events and your writing, topic or genre.
Welcome back to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop! If you’re new to the series, the authors included are always grateful for your reads and appreciate, even more so, when you share our writings with your friends. If you’re new to the series, welcome aboard. The authors will engage and impress you weekly, so be prepared to become a regular reader.
This summer will see the release of the second installment of my Trailokya Series. This event is something I’m very excited about. A thread of nervousness always attends my releases: how will it be received, what will the reviews say, did I truly fail this time, will I rise, or will people be upset by what I’ve written? Of all of those questions, the last is the one that almost always haunts me more than any of the others.
Controversy is a sticky wicket. On one hand, it could garner interest in your work. On the other, you could get buried by the controversy and all future work be received with derision by all but a few hard fans, that you may or may not wish to be associated with (for instance, writing about race and finding out you appeal to the Knights of the Klan. Yikes!).
The Trailokya series is the kind of book that faces some of the most difficult topics, and I’ve gathered them all under one cover, so to speak. From social issues like domestic violence, to culture wars and religion—these books don’t shy away from any of it. They will probably offend atheists and theists alike. It will drudge up the worst of the Men’s Rights Movement at the sight of a strong woman in charge, and they’ll likely revel in her pains, calling it deserved. For them, all women are evil.
What have you done? You might ask.
In the first installment, The Shadow Soul, I introduce the reader to a view of universe that stretches beyond the veil of perception as we know it. Angels and Demons populate the many regions. The war between them is still raging. But that is about where the similarity to Judaeo-Christian-Islamic tradition ends. You will find Buddhist, Hindu, pagan and other faiths intermingled in ways that make sense of each piece as if they were the shards from the fable of the Tower of Babel. Science (trans-dimensional travel, Tesla’s free energy, nanotechnology) becomes interspersed with this proposition and helps to hone a fantastical world.
That is enough to cause quite the controversy, especially with the deeply religious. When you take texts, ideas or teachings that are held close to the heart, and you fit them into a competing narrative, then you risk upsetting people. Their irrational actions are their way of attempting to protect their closely held beliefs, when they refuse to look at the competing text as simply just another competing text. I believe that is called cognitive dissonance. When one is comfortable in what they believe, that won’t happen. Unfortunately, we know all too well how few human beings are completely comfortable with their beliefs.
In the upcoming installment, Burning Down, I go deeper into the feminist track that the series takes. How feminist is it? You’ll have to read the books and decide for yourself. Some may not regard the struggle to maintain a family as inherently feminist. Again, some may not find the abuse that arises as inherently feminist either, citing that it happens to all genders (disregarding the disproportionate number of cases on file in every state and around the world where the woman is the victim). And this assessment will come from all sides. Perhaps Maiel isn’t focused enough on her career, and too focused on the man or her children to satisfy feminists. Perhaps she isn’t strong enough, or too strong—too this, too that.
Controversy arises in challenging what others are comfortable with. It is stirring the pot of convention and seeing what rises to the top. Will this mix work in the books? The reviews so far have praised these very things, but as the trilogy gains traction and a growing readership, I am still nervous. The punches will come, but will they carry any weight?
That in mind, I look forward to the release of the second book, but I am guarded.
Thanks for taking the time to read this week’s installment. Be sure to check out what the other authors have to say on the topic. You’ll find the links below…