Bubble Talk is where I interview some truly amazing authors and tell you all about their books! November is all about those elusive creatures of the sea, mermaids, and I’m so happy to be able to introduce you to ten talented authors and their stories.
Today, Derrolyn Anderson stops by to tell us about her series, Marina’s Tales, starting with the first book, Between the Land and the Sea.
Angel: What kind of research did you have to do before writing your book?
Derrolyn: To be honest, not a whole lot! I set the stories in my former seaside neighborhood that I’m very nostalgic for. I’m now living in another beautiful part of California, but I miss Aptos, a beachy little town right along the coast. It’s foggy a lot there, and there really is a decrepit cement ship that sits on the ocean floor at the end of a pier. When I decided to write a YA romance, and place it there, the mysterious setting just kind of screamed out for mermaids, and I dreamed them up the way I imagined them to be. [You can find] some pictures here.
Derrolyn: I think mermaids are symbolic of transformation and freedom. Not to mention the dangers of female independence!
Angel: What are your favourite sea-themed stories or legends? Did any of them influence your own book?
Derrolyn: I looked at a few mermaid legends on the internet, and ended up appalled at how many of them were clearly misogynistic! Every culture seems to have a tale of uppity women forced into the sea, with many of them then exacting revenge by using their sexuality to lure sailors to their doom. Not exactly Disney material! I mean, even the original “Little Mermaid” was a tragic tale of woe.
I saw my mermaids as more of a force of nature; feral, joyous and free, and mostly ignorant of human society.
Angel: How does your novel stand out from other mermaid/siren/selkie-themed books?
Derrolyn: I didn’t realize there were so many of them out there until after I wrote my first book and started looking around! I gather that a lot of the other stories create more of a mermaid civilization, whereas my mermaids are more like wild sea creatures, and my books focus a little more on the humans… and hybrids.
I purposefully decided not to read other YA mermaid themed stories in order to avoid being subconsciously influenced. They look like fun, and I anticipate diving into all of them when I wrap up this series. I think there’s room for lots of different kinds of mermaids in fiction – from sweet innocent sea maidens to vicious man eating monsters – they can be anything we make them out to be.
With all the new books and movies that keep coming out, it’s pretty clear that the mermaid’s time has arrived! Bring ‘em on!
Derrolyn: Ooh – definitely somewhere warm and tropical! Probably the South Pacific.
Angel: Ariel (of Disney’s The Little Mermaid) is the most famous mermaid of my generation. What would you tell her if you had the chance?
Derrolyn: He’s not worth it honey! Remember – there’s a lot of fish in the sea!
Something extraordinary is lurking in the deep ocean waters off the coast of Aptos, California. Just a few weeks after moving to the beach town, sixteen year-old Marina has nearly drowned twice, enchanted the hottest guy in high school, and discovered a supernatural creature. If she can manage to survive her increasingly dangerous encounters with unpredictable mermaids, she might just be able to unlock the mystery of her past and learn how to appease the mysterious forces that seem to want something from her… and maybe even find true love along the way.
Be sure to visit Derrolyn at her website.