Please welcome to the blog, Richard Wright!
He's the author of Thy Fearful Symmetry, a completely amazing book that I've recently fallen in love with. You can find my review here, and add the book to Goodreads by clicking the banner. Trust me, you'll want to. Especially if you like books with a creep factor.
Anyway it's Richard's time to shine, so I'll step away! Please enjoy his guest post and then scroll to the bottom for a surprise!
I was challenged once, by a lady I was involved with, to write a love story. I mostly scribble strange dark fictions, you see. While being the girlfriend of a writer seemed cool, I suspect she secretly wished she could trade me in for one of those 'proper authors' she was always hearing about. The lady never said so, but I believe she was hoping to lead me out of the ghetto, and turn my powers to good.
I gave her a story about passion, called When The Stars Threw Down Their Spears. Your regular tale of boy meets girl, boy and girl find out they're ancient enemies but fall in love anyway, God disowns them, and the forces of Hell are unleashed. A tale as old as time, even if it wasn't quite what she was hoping for. I was pleased with it. High passion, desperate romance, and an angel being tortured in a dingy Glasgow flat.
Okay, maybe I didn't stay exactly on brief. The lady and I went our separate ways some time after, which says it all.
You can download that story today, for free at most retailers except Amazon, where it's 'cheap' instead. I retitled it His Work To See, because that was easier to fit on the cover.
After the story was first published in 2000, I realised I hadn't finished it. Those two celestial lovers, Ambrose and Pandora, kept interrupting me at inopportune moments to suggest that they weren't entirely done with me. I'd started their tale, but was a long way from finishing it.
To appease them, I wrote the novel Thy Fearful Symmetry. If Stars is the heat of passion and romance, Symmetry is something deeper and more complex. Love never sits in a bubble. The black and white world it creates cannot withstand the distractions of reality. Other people intrude. Other pressures emerge from outside the romance. Sometimes, there's an actual apocalypse, and the world ends (well, not usually, but this time there is).
When faced with the ever more complicated forces of real life, love has to evolve. It's fed less by fire and intimacy, and ever more by faith. Faith that your choice was correct. Faith in the person you love. Faith in yourself. Faith that you'll stay strong and true through the many obstacles life hurls at you.
I don't think the woman for whom I wrote the story ever understood that.
Faith is many things though, and Thy Fearful Symmetry is about several different uses of the word. For Malachi Jones, it comes down to faith in what he's due, while for Inspector James Gemmell it's about faith in the power of law and order. For Father Calum Baskille, it's about faith in a God, and what happens when he no longer has need of it.
Those are the things I was writing of, when I wrote Thy Fearful Symmetry. Your mileage may vary. Every story is unique to the one who reads it. Every book fuses the author and the reader in different ways. It's one of the areas where the written word triumphs over all other means of storytelling. I may suggest images and ideas to you, but they only take final form in your own head, filtered through your own experiences and opinions. It's a strangely intimate form of telepathy, that way. Just you, me, and the apocalypse.
I hope you'll come and join me in the story, and find out what you might have faith in if the world ended.
Before I go, thank you to our hostess for letting me tell you a bit about where the book comes from. I like what you've done with the place Jessica, and am flattered to be asked in for tea and a natter.
Anytime Richard! Anytime at all.
Now then, let's get to the surprise shall we?
Thy Fearful Symmetry is free to all you lovely readers!
Yup, in HUGE act of kindness Richard Wright is sharing his wonderful book with each and every one of you, absolutely free, all day today on Amazon! The book will be for 24 hours, starting at 12 am PST today.
Go get your copy, get reading, and spread the love!
Also don't forget to thank Richard, since, you know, he's awesome ;).