Interview with Melody Styles

What is the inspiration of the story?
It sounds odd, but I had a lot of strange, but memorable dreams from about 16 on. I wrote a lot of them down. When I was searching for ideas beyond the basic idea of an adventure I keep getting drawn back to those dreams, and using elements of them, the tale grew from there. An example of one is the wing slapping meeting of the white owl in Eyfod Forest, another is the elf scene by Foxsong Lake.
Is there a message in your book, Heart of the Messenger, that you want readers to grasp?
I think several. The first is that you don’t have to be an epically awesome hero to make a difference, everyone is a hero in their own life. Little things can make a bigger difference than big things. Meka, who considers himself as the strongest and best, does nothing but cause pain and grief on purpose. Another message woven into this tale is, regardless of what you want to do, sometimes there are not other options, it is your reactions to situations presented to you that count.

From the historian side of me, I have incorporated the idea that history leaves us with only a simple view, what is remembered is often a dangerous one liner that heartlessly removes all the emotions and influencing decisions of the moment. We must learn to read between the lines to find the truth that is often hidden, be it on purpose or by accident. Likewise, that good and evil are never easy to define. I have Baol, a ruthless assassin, every now and then as a gentle-hearted hero, where as Begard, the knight in shining armour, regularly shows he is more controlled by greed and personal glory than noble ideals. Similarly, dark-hearted priestesses are clad in the white, symbolic of purity.

Finally, I think the overarching message I am trying to get across is ‘Would you take on an Adventure that would change your Life, and the World?’
Favourite quotes that sum up your views on life.
My favourite quote would be ‘A knight in shining armour is a man whose metal has never been tested.’ Gloss and glamour doesn’t impress me in anyway, only honesty and straight out determination.

My other favourite quote is ‘Tigers and Lions may be stronger, but wolves do not perform in the circus.’ I am my own person, I may not be the strongest or the best, but I make the decisions on what happens to me.
What books have influenced your life the most?
I’m guessing JRR Tolkein, because when asked what sort of book I’m writing I reply I’m aiming for Tolkein. Books I have kept on my shelf include The Lord of the Rings, The Dragonlance series, David Edding’s Belgarad series, Douglas Adam’s Dirk Gently Detective Agency books. Non-fiction books include the History of Medieval Europe, The Doomsday Book, Anglo Saxon Chronicles, and The Song of Roland.
Which writers inspired you?
I would have to say Rowling and Roth. While Tolkien is what I aspire to, Rowling (Harry Potter) and Roth (Divergent) made me realise I could do this, if I put effort into it.
What did I learn while writing?
How the world is a lot more complicated than we think. For each situation there are a dozen different ways of reacting, and that reaction determines what happens next, or the future. Also how much we just walk by, rush by, without taking note of at all, like light breezes and the warmth of the sun. I also learnt that if you set your mind to it, you can do anything. Likewise, bravery is a choice you make, not a pre-determined trait that only heroes have.
When did I decide to become a writer?
Writing is something that has always been apart of me (grammar and spelling definitely not). Be it the many variations of ‘Death of our World’ in grade 3-4B (sorry Ms Burrows!), to my supposed 800 word short story (that actually came in at over 3,000 words) that Mrs Arnold kindly read and suggested I contact a writers group. At 18 I wrote a list of things I wanted to achieve in my life. Writing a book was one of them (along with owning an international dressage horse stud). At the time I wrote down an idea for a story inspired by centaurs in a D&D comic. Still haven’t done more than that with those notes. Not long after that I became a ‘responsible adult’ and put away such childish things, but around 30 I picked up the pen again, realising writing was an important missing piece of me, and the term ‘responsible adult’ was a social control mechanism that limited people. About five years ago I decided I could write a proper book and so my adventure began. The horse stud I can live without.
How do you feel about ebooks and Indie publishing?
I think it’s fantastic. The internet has given our world the ability to share without boundaries, and that includes information which is causing research to leap ahead for the benefit of all. I feel the same about ebooks and Indie publishers. It is the Guttenberg revolution of our age. It has allowed people like me a chance to share ideas with readers around the world who may not have come in contact with these books any other way. They are also portable and cheaper, allowing more access. Physical books will always hold a special place in this world, and on my bookcases, but ebooks give us freedom and access.
What are you reading now?
Writing is what I do in my ‘spare/free’ time so I don’t have a lot of time to read. When I do, I find history is, in many ways, as entertaining as an adventure novel, and provides background research for writing ideas. Currently I have on the go Asser’s Life of Alfred, and The Five Rings. Just finished Medieval Cities and A knights own book on Chivalry. In the wings are Ovid’s Metamorphoses, and Not from Apes.
What is next?
Well book two is in progress and I am loving playing with some pretty cool ideas for Erina and Baol. The problems of the first book are simple compared to now living in a world where everyone knows both their identities. Beyond the Falcon Chronicles, I am hoping somewhere in the future to write an academic title focusing on the Saxon world. One of my pet areas of history. Whatever is next, I will always continue my own adventure of life.
Published 2017-10-01.
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Books by This Author

Heart of the Messenger
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 176,740. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
Erina knew without a doubt elves, hero knights, Shadis and blood seeking monsters existed only within the realms of Uncle Bower’s tales, and then a unicorn came looking for her...
Heart of the Messenger Part 1
Price: Free! Words: 47,480. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
Erina knew without a doubt elves, hero knights, Shadis and blood seeking monsters existed only within the realms of Uncle Bower’s tales, and then a unicorn came looking for her… Start an adventure you will remember for all time with this free sampler.