Tag Archives: lost

Ellen Jacobson, Author Interview

Today, I’m interviewing one of my co-authors from our fantasy anthology Hero Lost: Mysteries of Death and Life, hosted from The Insecure Writers Support Group and graciously published via Dancing Lemur Press in May of this year. The theme for this year’s anthology was a lost hero, and it’s been fascinating to discover how twelve different writers approached all the many things those two words invoked.

Welcome, Ellen Jacobson, author of The Silvering.


Hi, Ellen! What sparked your idea of a lost hero?

I woke up in the middle of the night after having a really vivid dream about a strange world where mysterious things happen to my main character, Caestu. At first, I didn’t necessarily envision Caestu as a lost hero, but as the story unfolded, it became clear that he had a tough choice to make – conform to what society expects of him or rebel against its control and oppression of others.


What was the hardest part to write?

The ending. I couldn’t find a satisfactory way to wrap things up, and I’m still not satisfied with the ending. I think I have a lot more of the story to tell and having to cap it at 5,000 words forced me to end it prematurely. Perhaps I’ll turn it into a novella or novel one day and give it a proper ending.


What is your preferred genre to write in? Why?

I started out writing a cozy mystery (which I’ve been working on for ages), but I’ve always had a ton of ideas for science fiction/fantasy stories. The Silvering was my first attempt to write in that genre and I really enjoyed it. I love the idea of not being constrained by how things are supposed to work in the real world and the freedom to imagine new worlds, cultures and peoples.


Is there a theme to your writing as a whole/What is your writing strong point? 

Because I’m a novice writer, I can’t say that there is a theme or strong point. I’ve only completed one thing so far – my story in the anthology. Ask me again in a few years. Hopefully, I’ll have typed “The End” on another manuscript and can maybe identify a theme or strong point.


What is your favorite book? Why?

I can never answer questions like this. It’s way too hard to narrow things down to just one book. What I can tell you is that there are some books that I’ve re-read, which I guess makes them favorites in a way, such as anything by Octavia Butler or Iain Banks, Frank Herbert’s Dune, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, C.S. Lewis’ Narnia books, Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series. Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers’ books are also fun to re-read.


Was there something about the prompt ‘Lost Hero’ that grabbed you?

I had actually started writing my story before the anthology theme was announced, so it didn’t really grab me in that sense. I do think it’s a great theme and I’m looking forward to reading everyone’s take on it.


If your lost hero had a theme song, what would it be?

They’re not allowed to sing in Caestu’s society, so he wouldn’t have a theme song. Actually, I don’t know if they’re allowed to sing or not, but I can see that being prohibited. This may be something I explore if I turn The Silvering into a novella or novel at some point.


Thanks, Ellen!

Connect with Ellen via Facebook, her blog, or Google+.



Want to know more about Hero Lost?

Click on over to our Hero Lost homepage to get a taste of the other stories and writers.

You can then purchase via Amazon at this link.




Curious about the Insecure Writers Support group?

Check out our website, Facebook Group, and Twitter.





Please be sure to visit Dancing Lemur Press!


I received an email from my dad last night.

Which, you know, isn’t possible, as he died last week.

I was very sleep deprived, and sick, and it was late. I was in the process of shutting the computer down and going to bed, when the email came through my phone, laying between computer and me.

I just stared.

That’s not right.


Did someone hack into his account? This is mean.

And some clarity began to seep in.

Holy crap.

His son, the brother I’ve never met from his first marriage, has his name.

And there it was: are you this man’s daughter? I’ve been trying to find you.

I started crying. My phone’s battery is blinking red, but held on to life while I texted my sisters and my mom before responding, and then in between while waiting for a follow up.

Overwhelmed. I hate that word. I think I use it too much. I found another sister through Facebook earlier this week, from dad’s second marriage, and have been praying and waiting for her reply. This took me absolutely by shock, especially since I was told these older siblings wanted nothing to do with me. Someone between us has our emails, our names, our phone number, and was the one to tell me to go away. I don’t think I’m mad quite yet- if this is sincere, she decidely stole ten years from all of us. Ten years to know each other and be part of each other’s lives. Ten whole years.

If this is sincere.

I’m scared. My younger sister and I. We haven’t gotten over an enormous……..chasm…….between our older sister and us. Large enough that we’ll never fully recover from it, or ever be able to truly forgive her. I feel amputated by that loss. Part of me is missing. Added to these siblings I’ve never stopped missing. Then the buried rejection in the harshest way possible from yet another, and I want to say: If you mean us harm, please stay away. We can’t handle it right now. Ever.

I told my work that I didn’t need three days to mourn. I’m not a loving daughter. I don’t equate with normal ones. But I got into work today and suddenly, I could not stop crying. Overwhelmed. A coworker told me to go home. Nothing’s happening, just go home. But I shook my head and tried to accomplish something. So she sat in the office with me and talked non-stop. About her cats, about vacation, about things going on in other departments. I don’t know if it was intentional, but when she stopped, or if I left the room, I’d start crying again. So, I left. And I’ll do what I do best: write it out.

And I bought a gigantic 5 foot tall skeleton. Because it made sense.

Now, I wait. I told him I didn’t want to talk on the phone. I want to see them, and talk in person.