♦Welcome to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop!♦
Do your characters celebrate New Years’
and if so, how? If not, why not?
Welcome back to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop! The authors included in this ongoing series wish to thank you for your reads. We appreciate, even more so, when you share our writings with your friends. If you’re new to the series, welcome aboard. The authors engage and impress weekly. Prepare to become a regular reader.
Theoretically, most of my known characters do celebrate the new year, in one capacity or another. “In 45 B.C., New Year’s Day is celebrated on January 1 for the first time in history as the Julian calendar takes effect.” (History.com) My books take place in the much more modern era: United States Civil War, World War II, and c. Hungarian Revolution of 1956. Yes, it’s true that The Trailokya Trilogy is not historical fiction, but paranormal-dark fantasy. It still has basis in a universe that mirrors our existing one but for the elements that are clearly not of this world. However, those celebrations may not take place directly on the page, like something out of Gatsby.
A New Year’s celebration takes place in Blue Honor, but the scene is marked by the hardships of war. There are no flamboyant parties. There is parading and posturing for the sake of a weary President. No one involved seems to take much joy in the proceedings. With all the Federal soldier faces, the dissolution of the states and knowledge of untold human suffering, there is not much to celebrate. We must also understand that this book is from the perspective of Joseph or Emily, and their interests focus on the absence of one another, and the possibility of its permanence.
In Burning Down, the New Year festivities have been and gone. The grime of the city remains despite the fireworks and joy expended just days prior to the moment in which Holly Greer meets a life changing friend. The thing is, much like the new year, the life changes take their sweet time. Nothing is immediate, although it is indeed fortunate. Those things that are written about her life are unchangeable. They must come to pass. They’re part of the fracture to come. I think we can relate to that. So many hopes are pinned on the New Year, and it annually disappoints. Despite some good that may come, overall we don’t get the treasure chest we invision. We simply aren’t in control of much of our lives and able to steer ourselves unerringly toward our intended goals. If everyone has free will, then no one does. We are at the mercy of a cause and effect that has been going for eons. It shapes us. It limits our choices. It diminishes freedom interminably.
When I said I write dark stories, I really mean it. I write historical fiction and paranormal epics that delve into the frustrations of humanity, and its realities. There is no choice to be made by any of us that is not shaped by the choices of others that were shaped by others, then shaped by others, and still shaped by others more. It’s a fact. My freedom exists within the confines of choices selected for me by others, possibly by those long since passed away, too. It is dependent upon my perspective, which is also not static. There are so many variables I find the idea of free will quite impossible, and quite laughable.
So, when my characters come to the New Year, with its promise of a fresh start, it ends up being more of a turn of the page. That’s something I personally feel about the holiday. I’m so glad many find joy on that day, and have a great time at parties and other events. They should. They must! Their experiences are different from mine, and difference is the richness of the tapestry of human existence. But, although I recognize this, many do not recognize the varied experience of our fellow species, so I write about it, to make sure it’s marked down. I paint it with some grime to make it realistic. Even though there are those who need the party to turn the page, there are others who suffer through those moments. The juxtaposition of good and evil rears its head.
Reality is that New Year’s Day is just another day, and the universe takes no more notice of this particular time than it does any other. Good and bad happen, but the universe doesn’t care either way. Only we individuals care from our respective seats, and we care in a million different ways. My characters are either too focused on the fear of loss or the fear of continued mundanity to wallow in the extravagance others find relief in. Their eyes are turned toward a higher purpose and the draw of what is truly valuable. To them, marking the coming and going of years is trivial.
You ever pass through a pair of tree trunks that sit about a door-width apart, as if they’re some sort of magical portal? I used to do this as a kid. Not a thing changed, that I noticed (but maybe I should write a story about how someone does this but doesn’t realize it until much later they have passed into another reality). That’s what the New Year is like. Nothing changes that you can take immediate note of, and looking back years aren’t neat packages of time stamped out. Things start in one year and end in others. Honestly, the whole thing is more like a fiscal marker to me than anything stellar. I mean, where is the start of our orbit around the sun anyway? Who determined it was that position?
My philosophies are not festive, I know. But, would you want me to be glittery? I don’t think the books I write would be interesting or impactful anymore if I did lose my realism and shade.
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