Guest Author Mysti Parker
Elves are People, Too—A Love Story
by Mysti Parker
In 2001, a little movie called “The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring” hit the big screen. During that three hour stretch in a dim theater, I munched happily on popcorn and fell in love all over again.
I’d fallen for its predecessor, “The Hobbit”, many years before, when I wore out the little 45 record that came with an abridged children’s version of J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic tale. I adored Bilbo. My heart sped as I listened to the gravelly-voiced narrator describing the terrified hobbit’s trek into the dragon Smaug’s lair. No matter how many times I listened and read along, the story captivated me, even when the record skipped at every other paragraph.
And back at the theater in 2001, when Orlando Bloom tossed that long blond hair (ok, I know it was a wig) behind his shoulder, raised his bow, and drew the string back toward his pointed ear, I fell in love with Legolas.
Actually, I fell in love with elves.
Through a trilogy of films, Tolkien’s immortal characters were resurrected by director Peter Jackson’s genius. One might imagine my giddiness over the first installment of “The Hobbit” coming out this December. Yet, as I read the books and drooled over Legolas in the films, I knew something was missing.
I didn’t know what that something was until 2009. In that eight-year span, I quit my job to become a full-time mom, moved to rural Western Kentucky, had two more babies, and became hooked on roleplaying games like Everquest and The Elder Scrolls. In those games, I came to realize what I’d missed in Tolkien’s version of fantasy—the elves!
Yes, there were elves, but I wanted more of Galadriel, Arwen, and Legolas. I wanted more than their portrayal as perfect, whimsical beings. I wanted to get behind the scenes to see what secrets lay in their tidy closets.
And that’s when I started writing. It began with me writing about the elven characters I played in computer games. One of the stories about a dark elf sparked something special. I decided to break away from the fan-fiction slant and create my own fantasy world. After much rewriting and editing, I submitted “Let There Be Love” to Midnight Showcase Fiction (now Melange Books), and they accepted it right off the bat.
From then on, I had my motivation. Freedom, in the form of my very own creation, not confined to someone else’s vision or a game’s pre-set lore. In my world, which came to be called Tallenmere, I held the reins. I could dive headlong into stories where elves were at the forefront, and not just charming minor characters. They would experience passion, anger, jealousy, violence, and treachery just as any human would, with some necessary differences, of course, to give them a unique spin.
So that’s where I am today, carving out the world of Tallenmere one elf at a time. I hope you’ll come along with me on this journey. But beware—you just might fall in love, too!
One lucky commenter will win a PDF or Kindle of BOTH A Ranger’s Tale and Serenya’s Song
Tallenmere, Book Two
by Mysti Parker
In the fantasy world of Tallenmere, no one ever said love was easy…
Serenya Crowe may be a half-elf commoner, but she’s no ordinary woman. With the ability to interpret dreams, and a birth defect that forces her to wear gloves, she’s endured small-town gossip and the cruelty of her husband, Sebastian, The Earl of Summerwind. All she’s ever wanted is to live a quiet life and raise a family. When she meets the new stranger in town, her world and her heart, are turned upside down.
Wood-elf Jayden Ravenwing is an ex-secret agent who wants nothing more than to forget matters of the heart. He left the bustle of Leogard and his failed marriage to make a fresh start in Summerwind. He never planned to fall in love again, especially with the enchanting Serenya Crowe.
When a strange portal opens on the Crowe property at the edge of town, Jayden is thrown into an investigation, knowing that if he fails, Serenya and everyone in Summerwind may die.
Together, he and Serenya must overcome an ancient evil, and their own inner demons, to save Summerwind and find the love they’ve always dreamed of.
Mysti Parker is a full time wife, mother of three, and a writer. Her first novel, A Ranger’s Tale was published in January, 2011 by Melange Books, and is the first in a fantasy romance series. She is also the proud writer of Unwritten, a blog voted #3 for eCollegeFinder’s Top Writing Blogs award.
A Ranger’s Tale: Melange Books, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords
Serenya’s Song: MelangeBooks
Great Post Mysti! I love how you felt the magic inspired by Lord of the Rings and then began writing you own tales of fan-fiction, motivated by playing those types of video games. It "rings" so familiar with me– and it's absolutely fantastic and inspiring to see that motivation turn into success with your books! Good luck on the book tour!
I wish you all the best!
Thanks a bunch, Nick! Same to you, and glad to meet a fellow lover of roleplaying games. Hope you stick with your writing ambitions too!
The Hobbit was the first full sized novel I had ever read. It has enchanted me since that first reading. Thank you for bringing those memories back.
You're welcome, TJ, and thank you so much for stopping in!
Lovely post, Mysti. I already have both your books and I wanted to say how much I loved reading them
Thanks Jenny! I'm honored to have you as a fan. You're one top-notch author yourself!
I had never heard of Lord of The Rings until my son brought the DVD movies with him when he visited from NY. My reading rarely included fantasy. But now, I'm hooked on the adventures that spring forth from Tallenmere. You've definitely given elves their place in society with all the humanistic traits.
It amazes me how a tiny seed becomes an idea that grows and spreads, fired by sweat, pencil gnawing rewrites, etc, until it reaches the eyes and minds of a captive audience. Mysti, your books are that good.
On a different note, I tried to come up with a male character name. I'd exhausted family and friend names when I noticed the dog watching me from the couch…I swear, he winked. But – Max – a nice, strong, masculine name. lol
Thank you so much, Leona! I'm just thrilled that you've enjoyed my stories. Plus, I don't think I've come across a Max in literature that I didn't like. Great alpha male name!!
I think I had the same 45 record of The Hobbit! It was too scary for me because I was so young, so I'd only listen to it with a parent or a brother in the room with me. 🙂
Oh, Lindsey, isn't that neat? I so wish I still had it. Of course, we don't own a record player anymore. It WAS rather creepy, but I think that's why I liked it. Always been drawn to the weird and creepy.
Between us Mysti, what with your elves and my goblins, I'd say we have the world of fantasy sown up. 🙂
Yep, Jack, everyone else just go home. We've got this. 🙂
I LOVE your goblins, Jack. Can't wait to read the whole anthology through again!
I love knowing how books get started. And knowing I'm not the only one who love fantasy as an adult and wishes I could find that portal that will take me to a land with creatures and beings like that. Great post, Mysti!! Thank you, Sarah, for hosting!!
I keep hoping I can go there myself. That's why I keep writing, I guess 🙂 Thanks so much for being so sweet and supportive, Amy!
Hey, Sarah, with all my running around this morning, I forgot to say THANK YOU for hosting me!!! So THANK YOU!!! 😀
You're very welcome! Thank you for guest blogging with me! 😀
I've always been more of a fan or reality than fantasy, but the way you imbue your characters with passion and romance draws me into your world. Heady stuff.
That's a wonderful compliment, Alan, thank you! See, I just KNEW elves were more than just pretty immortal people with nice hair. They're full of life! 😀
Mysti – As a fellow LOTR/Hobbit fan, I have one burning question – have you bought your Lego Legolas yet, now that there are Lego LOTR sets? (We have not, but we will!)
Great post. Thanks for sharing the inspiration behind the wonderful world and characters of Tallenmare. I have a soft spot for Serenya's song though, because my daughter is Serena and her best friend is Jaden.
Surprisingly, Cristina, we have not got into Legos yet at our house. The girls haven't been that interested in them, and the boy just turned 4 this year. I suspect that Legos will soon become a staple, and of course, I'll steer him toward Legolas first 🙂 I mean Lego = Legolas!! Match made in heaven, I'd say.
That's so cool about your daughter and her friend too. Leona up above, also had a name connection with this story and a family member. Thanks for sharing that–I love to hear how readers make connections!
Now I understand why the threads in your stories are strong – they were practically born with you.
Yep, I think you're right, Judy! Thanks so much for stopping by!!
Can I kiss the girl in the cover shot? Oh sorry, I'll bite my tongue. But there's my comment 😛
LOL! Well, Jayden might have something to say about that, and Serenya just might bite back 🙂
Or were you talking about me? In that case, it takes chocolate, lots of it, and the good stuff too! Thanks for stopping by LA!
Comments are closed.