Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Guest Post & Giveaway: The World of Witchlanders by Lena Coakley

We are so excited to have Lena Coakley here with us today for an amazing tour stop as part of Kismet Book Tourig's site. Lena is talking with us about the world of Witchlanders (which is amazing, by the way) and there are two chances to win prizes below. Enjoy!

The World of Witchlanders
I love to get lost in a book’s world.  Some of my all-time favourite novels, Sabriel by Garth Nix, Fairyland by Paul J. McAuley and Feed by MT Anderson, I love for their richly detailed worlds. When I started to write Witchlanders, I knew I wanted to spend a lot of time on the worldbuilding.  One thing those novelists I mentioned don’t forget, though, is that worldbuilding is always related to character.  As dazzling as McAuley’s or Nix’s worlds are, they exist to put pressure on people, on the characters of the book—so when I wrote Witchlanders, I tried to remember that that the Witchlands aren’t just a backdrop for Ryder’s life like a stage set, they’re part of what has made him who he is, just as my own world and culture has made me who I am.

In Witchlanders, I was really interested in creating a matriarchal society, the witches’ coven, and seeing it from the point of view of a boy trying to figure out how to be a man.  Many people creating a goddess-worshipping matriarchy might have created an idealized society, but I knew I wanted the covens to have as many flaws and dark secrets as the patriarchal society of their enemies, the Baens across the border.

One of my favourite things about writing Witchlanders was creating the backstory for these two cultures—the rituals, the history, the languages.  I wanted both the Witchlander and the Baen societies to be equally beautiful and equally flawed.  And I wanted to create a main character, Ryder, who is unable to really see his own culture—both its beauties and its flaws—until he comes up against its opposite: Falpian’s culture, the Baen culture.

Many people have been writing me lately about how much they love Falpian, which surprises me because he really has some abhorrent opinions!  He has two sisters he adores and yet he literally does not believe that women have souls.  But something really wonderful happens when you meet someone from another place: you begin to examine all the assumptions of your own culture.  Ryder and Falpian get an opportunity to do that in this book and it changes them both.

Kindle3 Giveaway:

Answer the video question by leaving us a comment on this post and then you are entered in the Kindle3 Giveaway. Please be sure you leave away for us to contact you! Gather up to 15 entries by commenting on each Tour Stop (full list below). Open US/Canda Only.


Be sure to stop by Rayment's Reading Rants and Rambles for a chance to win a copy of Witchlanders. All rules for that giveaway will be posted there. Good luck! 

All Tour Stops:

Monday August, 22nd -The Page Turners
Tuesday,August, 23rd- The Unread Reader
Wednesday,August, 24th - Books Complete Me
Thursday,August, 25th - We Fancy Books
Friday,August, 26th - Read Breath Relax

Monday, August, 29th - Emilie’s Book World
Tuesday, August, 30th - The Mundie Mom’s
Wednesday, August, 31st - Enchanted Ink
Thursday, September 1st- Well Read Wife
Friday,September 2nd - A Journey of Books

Monday, September 5th- The Story Siren
Tuesday, September 6th - One A Day Y.A.
Wednesday, September 7th - Reading Angel
Thursday, September 8th - Soul Unsung
Friday, September 9th - Alice Marvel’s Lena's Site!


  1. OOOHHH that is a tough question! There are so many worlds I would like to visit. But to live? I'd choose the world of Chrestomanci.


  2. Forks... just because it is so beautiful! And, of course, that town will forever be engraved in my brain!

  3. Wow, there are so many good ones! But I'd probably choose Gail Carson Levine's Kyrria because of how magical she makes it seem. And it isn't too dangerous... lol.


  4. Ummm does ours count, as in Harry Potter? lol I'll go with Vampire Academy. I'd love to fight a strigoi anyday!

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  5. I would need to pick the Harry Potter world, when nothing bad is happening that is!

  6. Boy, I read a lot of UF and those worlds usually have some very bad elements. If it could be a brief visit, I'd like to experience Ilona Andrew's Atlanta with the shapeshifters and magic.

  7. Easy- Hogwarts! No competition, I've always wanted to be one of Harry's close friends and wouldn't even care if I died fighting against Voldemort!


  8. I love that the matriarchal society in Witchlanders was as flawed as the patriarchal society. Matriarchal societies in fiction are almost always these perfect worlds, so it was nice to see a (more realistic!) alternative.

    As for the question, easy! Harry Potter! But I'd better not be a muggle :P

    imagesandwords at optonline dot net

  9. Oh, that *is* a hard question, but I think I'll go with Bordertown.
    (And in case it doesn't show up in my blogger profile, my email is feynico at gmail dot com.)

  10. Hi Everybody! Thanks so much for dropping by to comment, and thanks so much to the Books Complete Me team for hosting my tour stop today!

    Me? It's a tough one, but I'm going to go with Oz.

  11. I'd want to live in an old school fairy tail land. Like Old Disney movies, where dreams always come true, the bad guys always loses and the good guys always win.

  12. like everyone else thats hard. Why not live here and there. Live in harry porter world then oz and i love fairy worlds lol Just the color and place not most fairies. lol . Great giveaway Thanks Joannie jscddmj at aol dot com

  13. I never want to grow up! Never Land with Peter Pan :)

  14. I will go for vampire academy

    gfc follower

    vidishamun at gmail dot com

  15. I'm going with the first place that popped in my mind the second I was done reading that question: NEVERLAND!!

    Yes, Neverland. I'm 25 and to some that's still young, and to the young it seems like a cool age, but to ME ... I feel old =( lol I love my son to the extent but to be young again and stay young would be AWESOME!! no wrinkles/white hair (I have them I swear), no responsibilities, NO BILLS!!, OMG and a fast matabolism LOL I would forever be eating chocolate, fried chicken and G*d knows what else =) If I could go to Neverland I would love to be 21 again and take my son with me ^_^ husband is optional hahaha
    Thanks for hosting this giveaway!!

    GFC Follower: SpadesHighReads
    TValeros18 AT gmai DOT com

  16. I would love to live in the Iron Kingdom from Julie Kagawa's books. I just read that series and it was awesome. :)
    Thank you so much for the giveaway!


  17. I'd love to live in Julie Kagawa's world...the Summer fey sound like they have such a lovely home.

    Thanks for the giveaway!


  18. That's hard to pick!! I would probably pick a Fey kingdom - most likely the Summer court. Second choice would be Hetar - from Bertrice Small's fantasy series.


  19. Either Harry Potter world or Narnia! I can't wait to read this book!!

    natalie152 (at) gmail (dot) com

  20. I thought hard about this and I have to go with Hogwarts/ Harry Potters world. Nothing in my opinion can top it.

    Findjessyhere at gmail dot com

  21. The Vampire Academy because fighting to protect from the strigoi would be amazing and dangerous!!!!


  22. With out a doubt, it would be Harry Potter. I seriously love that series SO much. I still cry for like...the last half of the 7th book. I would most definitely want to grow up all magical-like...

    thanks for the chance to win!

  23. I'm going to go with the first one that popped in my hear - Hogwarts! How fun would it be to be a wizard, and learn spells!? Awesome :)


  24. I would have to go with Narnia! One of my favorite worlds since I was a kid.
    wolfluvr420 at yahoo dot com

  25. I would have to definitely love to live in the Harry Potter world! It would be so cool living as a wizard!

  26. Twilight probably. Love vamps and who wouldn't want eternal youth and two hot young guys fighting over you?

  27. Hmm tough question. I think I'd like the world in the Shade series by Jeri Smith-Ready. I think seeing ghosts would be kinda cool :)
    amercnchic (at) aol (dot) com

  28. Harry Potter takes the cake on this one, nothing compares to his wizarding world!

    Ashly F.

  29. I think that writing it would be the hardest part. I have so many ideas going on in my head, but when it comes to putting them on paper it is not as easy as some people make it look. I'm much better at selling things once they are written.

    OBoyledBooks [at] gmail [dot] com

    Michelle (@OBoyledBooks)

  30. Wow....Its a hard one...THe world of Harry Potter popped into my mind first...and I see TONS of people have picked it. And then there is the Twilight world...2 of my all time favorite Its a toss up between the 2...they both have benefits of their own for me.

    jmluker at winco dot net

  31. That is the single hardest question, i've ever been faced with! Honestly I have SO many favorite books that...oh, well I'll choose, let's say five. (Sorry, I know, but I just CAN'T choose!) (Notw: these are not in any particular order)

    1. Huntsdale (Wicked Lovely series by Melissa Marr)
    2. Roseville, VA (The Gallagher Girl series by Ally Carter)
    3. IPCA world (Paranormalcy Trilogy by Kiersten White)
    4. Camp Half-Blood (Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan)
    5. Hecate Hall (Hex Hall Trilogy by Rachel Hawkins)

  32. that's sorry!

  33. I want to live in Karen Marie Moning's Fever world. It's dangerous and full of action.

    Cambonified (at) yahoo (dot) com

  34. If I could live in any fictional world, it would be a world wear being a witch was common and it is normal to practice witchery.

    dorcontest at gmail dot com

  35. Definitely Harry Potter's world!


  36. I think I'd be able to excel at Hogwarts, although I'd probably be a Ravenclaw, so I'm going to have to go Potter!

    contact [at] bibliosaurustext [dot] com

  37. My fictional world would have to be Forks, Washington as in the Twilight series. I would love to meet swoon-worthy vamps that are gorgeous and romantic!

    meganribinsky at yahoo dot com

  38. Either Middle-Earth or Narnia.

    lovetoread205 [at] gmail [dot] com

  39. I would have to say Valdemar. My second choice would be Pern.
    musicalfrog at

  40. If I could also be magic, I'd love to live in Harry Potter's world! Post-Voldemort, of course.

    mysecretagentloverman at gmail dot com

  41. Many come to mind. I choose Lyra's Oxford from Philip Pulman's His Dark Materials. I would love to see the buildings and the colleges.

  42. Sorry I forgot
    carmenferreiro (at) aol (dot) com

  43. It's a toos up between Hogwarts and Never Never Land.
    mamabunny13 at gmail dot com

  44. Hmmm. This is a difficult question, and many places come to mind. But as of right now I am reading Glass House by Rachel Caine and my answer would have to be in Morganville Texas in the glass house sitting between Shane and Michael :]

    However ask me again next week and it would be a completely different answer!

    Ashley Suzanne
    ashleysbookshelf at gmail dot com

  45. Anne Rice's New Orleans. Gotta have me some real vampires. And Lestat... Ooooo.... lol


  46. Hm... well I'd probably have to say that spirit world in Spirited Away... my favorite movie of all time. :D If not there then probably Harry Potter's world. :P



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