Thursday, July 22, 2010

Guesting today, ESTHER MITCHELL!

Today's guest is Esther Mitchell, a talented lady who shares a little window into herself with us. Let's support her with questions and comments.

Everything I Needed To Know, I Learned From My Characters

Yeah, I know. It might seem like a sort of overused title. But there's a great deal of truth in it, for me, and it's a philosophy that's carried me through the ups and downs of life, and writing.

Over the years (decades, really) of writing, I've come to one inescapable conclusion. I've learned something from each and every character I've ever encountered in my writing career. Some have been lessons in what not to do (being evil is a sure-fire way to end up dead and despised, for example. The Widow Society from Project Prometheus taught me that).

However, most have been positive lessons in how to live my life. Like how honor, integrity, and loyalty are worth more than anything else in the world ( the Commandos, from Underground, taught me that). That judging a person based solely on their outward appearance is a sure way to bypass something truly wonderful and life-altering in this world (Matt Raleigh's lesson, from IN HER NAME).

I learned that guilt and anger are two of the most poisonous emotions that exist, and they can do irreparable damage to the things I hold most dear (thanks to Trevor Watkins and Jaye Michaels in SHADOW WALKER). That no matter how far down I go, no matter how dark and terrible things seem, there's always hope for me (Tamia Kuan, from Underground, and Peter Talladay, from HOPE OF HEAVEN, both taught me that).

I even learned, during one of the darkest periods of my life, that the only way you stay a victim is by letting the person who harmed you maintain their power (this was a hard-learned lesson, for both myself and Chelsea Hanover in BURDEN OF PROOF).

And I learned that fear is the most numbing, and destructive, power in the world. It can tie you down, hold you prisoner, and beat the hell out of you. It can keep you from what you want, and turn you against those you love and who love you. These lessons came from Telyn Gwndal (DAUGHTER OF ASHES), Hope MacKenzie (HOPE OF HEAVEN), and Matt Raleigh (IN HER NAME).

So, yes, I learned a great deal from my characters. I learned how to stand on my own two feet, and not allow myself to be held or beaten down by life's failures, or the fears and failures of others. Through their triumphs, I learned that love has the capacity to wash away any stain on the soul, and that an open heart and open mind are the most amazing and spiritually uplifting possessions a person can own.

My characters inspired great changes in my life, opening my eyes and allowing me to see what was in front of my face all along. I only hope they can do the same for you.

Love and Bright Blessings,

Esther Mitchell

Blub for Daugher of Ashes

Telyn Gwndal has always feared Majik. But when her destiny brings her back to the place her nightmares were born, Telyn must take up a sacred quest to avenge the father she never knew. Her greatest ally is a man with a secret that could reawaken a past Telyn believes dead and buried, and destroy the truth she holds sacred. Can she trust him with her heart, or will her destiny force her to let him go?


Outside the Camp House, Telyn wished she hadn’t been so hasty to leave. Against her will, her gaze was drawn to the mountain, and her insides twisted in a mixture of pain and longing.


"Quite a sight, isn't it?"

Her attention whipped to her left at that query, to find a man standing beside her. He had the long, plaited hair of a Borderlander, and his tarnished armor screamed mercenary loud enough the dead could have heard it. And yet, something told her he was neither.

"Excuse me?"

He nodded toward Raiador. "The mountain. Never seen anything quite like it."

She peered closer in the diming light, trying to discover what it was about him that convinced her he wasn't exactly what his appearance claimed. He was tall, even to her with her Bathron blood. That could be a Borderlander trait -- the few she met were easily as tall as she was. His mud-brown hair hung midway down his back, woven into the traditional Borderlander plaits. But there were secrets in his smoky-green gaze that told her he wasn't who he appeared. A sense of kinship to this man blanketed her -- she was more than she appeared, as well, even if she wasn't sure what that was, yet. This man's charisma told her he was far from the mercenary his garb declared him to be.

A well-worn scabbard hung from an equally abused leather belt, but his sword hilt had the gleam of care, and the glint of metal at the top of his scuffed black boots hinted that he was well armed. He wasn't a man to take lightly, and she had to wonder if he was friend, or foe.

"And you are?" She frowned up at him, daring him to meet her gaze.

He did, but those eyes remained shuttered, not allowing her access to his thoughts. "No one of consequence, Sera."

Also available at Amazon in Kindle

To learn more about Esther and her other great books visit


Lizzie said...

Esther, you're so right!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for having me on, today! :)

I've long maintained that reading is the best way to absorb the lessons any story has to give. Watching the movie might be fun, but you rarely carry away as much from a movie as you do from a book.

I still remember books and stories that I read as a young child. To be honest, I don't think I can recall very many of the movies I saw as a kid, at all...

Helen Hardt said...

Nice to meet you, Esther! What a great post. We all learn from our characters. It's one of the most exciting things about being a writer -- to know we can create these people who actually teach us something. A true gift!

hotcha12 said...


Lizzie said...

Helen & hotcha, great to see you!!

Esther, thanks so much for sharing with us. I also received an email from Valerie who tried to post, but couldn't get in. She wanted to let you know she loves your books!

hotcha12 said...