Author Of The Week: Chat with Emily R King (The Hundredth Queen), Plus Giveaway!!
Welcome to our weekly special feature post, Author Of The Week!!
Each week we will be interviewing a different YA author and highlighting their upcoming release!
We will also be hosting a giveaway of the book we are highlighting!!
Introducing Emily R King, YABC's Author of the Week!!
Emily R. King is a reader of everything and a writer of fantasy. Born in Canada and raised in the USA, she has perfected the use of “eh” and “y’all” and uses both interchangeably. Shark advocate, consumer of gummy bears, and islander at heart, Emily’s greatest interests are her four children. She’s a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and an active participant in her local writers’ community. She lives in Northern Utah with her family and their cantankerous cat.
Meet The Hundredth Queen!
As an orphan ward of the Sisterhood, eighteen-year-old Kalinda is destined for nothing more than a life of seclusion and prayer. Plagued by fevers, she’s an unlikely candidate for even a servant’s position, let alone a courtesan or wife. Her sole dream is to continue living in peace in the Sisterhood’s mountain temple.
But a visit from the tyrant Rajah Tarek disrupts Kalinda’s life. Within hours, she is ripped from the comfort of her home, set on a desert trek, and ordered to fight for her place among the rajah’s ninety-nine wives and numerous courtesans. Her only solace comes in the company of her guard, the stoic but kind Captain Deven Naik.
Faced with the danger of a tournament to the death—and her growing affection for Deven—Kalinda has only one hope for escape, and it lies in an arcane, forbidden power buried within her.
In Emily R. King’s thrilling fantasy debut, an orphan girl blossoms into a warrior, summoning courage and confidence in her fearless quest to upend tradition, overthrow an empire, and reclaim her life as her own.
YABC: What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
As cliché as it may be, I had a dream. More specifically, I woke up in the middle of the night with a book title in my mind: The Hundredth Wife. A second later, I corrected it to The Hundredth Queen. I write young adult fiction and “wife” would not suit a title for my audience. I fell back asleep with the adjusted title firm in my memory, and when I woke the following morning, I drafted the Claiming scene (more about that later).
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
I adore Kalinda’s love interest, Captain Deven Naik. Deven represents all the good men I know, like my father and my husband, and hopefully someday, my three sons. Deven is kind and a peacemaker. But he is also duty-bound to the rajah, who is not in the least bit good.
YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?
The title came before anything else, which doesn’t often happen for me. I’ve been known to draft whole books before deciding upon one. This time it came first because it defines my main character, Kalinda, much to her dismay. By getting to know her, I developed the world and plot.
YABC: What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
The very first scene I drafted is not in the first chapter, or the second, or the third. The first scene I wrote takes place in chapter four, when Kalinda meets Rajah Tarek during the Claiming ceremony at the temple. This scene still gives me goose bumps, and has changed very little from the first draft.
YABC: Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
At one point in the story, Kalinda has to let go of everything she knows, everything familiar and safe in her life, and the person she loves most. My family moved around some when I was growing up. The hardest was when I was thirteen, and we moved three states away from all my friends. Moments like that are difficult to narrate because they encompass more than just the minutes when you say goodbye. Those moments hinge on years of memories and emotional ties. Kalinda’s parting scene is far worse than mine. She is forced from her home, and she doubts she will ever return.
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you’ve learned as a writer from then to now?
Above all, I’ve learned that rejection and criticism is inevitable, but it does not define you. No one’s definition of success should depend on an agent, editor, or reader’s opinion. This industry is maddeningly subjective. Writers have to know why they love to write and strive to improve. They must build their career on self-belief and a humble trek for betterment. The storms of disappointment, dejection, criticism, and insecurity will hit us. They may even shake us. But our commitment to the growth and learning that comes through the creation process will ground us.
YABC: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
Every book is different. Typically, I enjoy drafting. I like the insatiable call of the muse and the high of pounding out a commendable word count for the day. But some books require a slower pace. The Hundredth Queen was a book that could not be rushed.
YABC: What was your favorite book in 2016?
This is difficult! I read a lot, about a book a day when I am not on deadline with my writing. Since I was on deadline most of last year, I haven’t read as much as I’d like. But my favorite book of 2016 was Stung by Bethany Wiggins. I read it while on a flight and got airsick because I refused to put it down even when the ride got bumpy. I disembarked from the plane an unflattering sickly green, but her writing is riveting and well worth the temporary queasiness.
YABC: What’s up next for you?
Two more books are coming to The Hundredth Queen Series! I have been busy preparing those for publication. Writing in the same fantasy world has its challenges, so once I finish book three, I’d like to return to a partially revised draft of a standalone fantasy I shelved to work on this series.
YABC: Is there anything that you would like to add?
Thank you for having me!
The Hundredth Queen
By: Emily R King
Release Date: June 1st, 2017
Publisher: Skyscape Publishing
One winner will receive a copy of The Hundredth Queen (Emily R King) ~ (US Only)
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*
(The Fire Queen ~ Sequel to The Hundredth Queen releases in September 2017!!)
The Fire Queen
By: Emily R King
Release Date: September 26th, 2017
Publisher: Skyscape Publishing
I find myself falling in love with the cover more and more!
And it sounds like we'll have one heck of a leading lady! I need this book in my hands! ❤