Author Interview: Ronel Janse van Vuuren @miladyronel from Grumpy Old Trickster Gods #AuthorInterview #humour #books

To help spread the word about the Grumpy Old Trickster Gods anthology, I’m interviewing the authors involved.

*Screeching sound.* I’m taking over the blog today. Shut up, Stiles!

I’m Callum and I’m the oldest in the Rottweiler pack. Which means I’m the most reliable to take over the blog. Today we have Ronel Janse van Vuuren author of Blaze of Glory. I call her mum.

What is your story in the Grumpy Old Trickster Gods about?

Kit, a Kitsune, who is coerced into taking part in a contest of trickery between Bast and Apollo. She has to save the day when things get out of hand – because Apollo is a childish idiot, of course.

Of course. What kind of research did you do for this story?

Loads and loads of reading about Apollo, Bast, Kitsunes, ancient Greece, ancient Egypt, how these pantheons worked, what they did to settle differences, etc. You know, the usual.

I do. Do you enjoy books filled with mythology and folklore?

Absolutely. Whether it’s non-fiction or fiction, I devour these books. Which is why, of course, my books are steeped in mythology and folklore.

Where did the inspiration for this story come from?

I honestly can’t remember. I do know that the scene where everyone is dancing to an 80s song is based on watching “Music and Lyrics” and then delving into 80s music videos on YouTube. This one is hilarious.

Mum! Would you and your main character get along? 

Yes. We both like things to work in a certain way. I don’t think, though, that we would have gotten along during the height of her power.

If you were to write a spin-off about a side character, which would you pick?

Loki. Just looking at how he interacts with the others – while actually having to be locked up in his cave – intrigues me.

It would. Have pets ever gotten in the way of your writing? 

Of course! You can’t have a flock of chickens, two horses and four dogs (which is the count at present), without something interfering in your well-planned day. But they know the rule: don’t interrupt except for fire or blood. And, unfortunately, those issues come up far more frequently than I would like.

That is not my fault! You’re the one who added the puppies to the pack… Are there any books or authors that inspired you to become a writer?

“Tithe” by Holly Black inspired me to write about Fae and to write Dark Fantasy.

Yeah, I’ve seen that name on loads of books on the bookshelf. Name an underappreciated novel that you love.

“Ushig” by Annemarie Allen. I can’t believe more people haven’t read this. I actually had to add it to Goodreads when I reviewed it.

That sounds more like “unheard of” than “underappreciated”… probably the same thing. Which author in your genre do you most admire, and why?

Anthea Sharp. Though I haven’t read everything she’s written – there are so many books! – I like that she’s an indie author writing about Fae and other creatures, mostly Dark Fantasy, and that she has been able to sustain her career in innovative ways (anthologies, Kickstarters, various formats for her books, etc.).

Are there therapeutic benefits to modelling a character after someone you know?

Yes. I won’t go into detail, but let’s just say that if you think you are the one being tortured by Fate, brutally trampled by a herd of hippogriffs, or slowly being driven mad by pixies, then you might actually be right. Ann Lamott said that you own everything that happened to you, so you should tell your stories, and if people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.

I know you’ve modelled characters after us… and some of the pack I’ve never met. How do you use social media as an author? 

To connect to readers. That’s the point of this interview as well. I also chat with my friends (folklorists, authors, pet-parents, etc.).

Yes, and sharing photos of us without our consent!

Chill, Cal!

Fine. What books do you enjoy reading?

Anything that is well-written, doesn’t use cursing or blasphemy as a crutch, doesn’t make the heroine/hero do stupid things to make the plot work, doesn’t treat the reader as an idiot by over-explaining things, doesn’t brush off mental health as something imaginary, doesn’t trample over consent, and doesn’t kill or maim animals for shock value.

Agreed. As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?

Today, a dragon. The kind that can change size and be lethal anyway. Dragons are awesome.

Rottweilers are better!

Thanks, Cal for hosting me 🙂

About the Author

Award-winning Dark Fantasy author Ronel Janse van Vuuren writes about kick-ass heroines, the duality of being human and loves to use folklore to underscore her point.

She’s a Rottweiler pack leader, chicken wrangler and horse servant.

All of her books are available for purchase from major online retailers.

Sign up to be notified of new releases, giveaways and pre-release specials – plus get a free eBook – when you join Ronel’s newsletter.

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