Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Author Interview – Carla Woody

at 10:30 AM

Why did you choose to write this particular book? This is a story that has been with me for a long time. I started it about ten years ago but set it aside. It would go away for a long time then visit me again more formed, maybe as Preston himself filled his skin, and my own experiences in Mayalands became richer over the years. Basically, the story wouldn’t leave me alone. When I finally picked it up again in late 2011, it came rushing out in the next several months.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? There are several messages. The first is that it’s possible to be lost and then found, to find ways through inner turmoil and difficult times, to find resolution. So, I consider it an initiation story in the sense of answering an inner call toward healing. It’s also about opting to have a wider perspective than our own and forgiveness.

A very important message is the difficulties that many Native people face, the acts done against them and the lands they value. I really wanted to bring awareness to these issues.

How much of the book is realistic? Have you included a lot of your life experiences, even friends, in the plot? I’ll first say that it is a work of fiction. But elements of the challenges that the characters undergo may seem familiar to a number of readers just because it speaks to the human condition. I did draw from a number of actual incidents in my own life, especially ceremonial experiences and time in Maya sacred sites and villages. I changed a few cultural things to fit in with the story, but otherwise the descriptions of ritual, beliefs and lifeways are factual. What I didn’t know myself, I researched through a stack of anthropological books I have on the specific Maya people I wrote about.

Will you write others in this same genre? Right now I’ve got two different ideas vying for my attention, both well developed. I’m not yet sure which one will win out to focus on first. It would be great to be able to split myself in two! Aside from that, one of the minor characters in Portals to the Vision Serpent is asking for a separate novel to tell his full story. I’m letting it percolate.

Who designed the cover? The artwork we used is one of my mixed media pieces, a ceiba tree—sacred to the Maya people—and a rainforest area that appears in the book. Becky Fulker of Kubera Design did the cover and interior design. I’d used her services before. She turns out professional results and is a delight to work with. Her website is: http://kuberabookdesign.com.

Who is your book publisher? I self-publish through my own small press: Kenosis Press.

What articles have you published recently? My article The Last Spirit Keeper was published in Sacred Fire Magazine in November 2012, Issue 16, about the last Lacandón Maya elder in the rainforest of Chiapas, Mexico still maintaining his traditions against great pressure. My article Acts of Creation was just accepted by Stone Voices, a spiritually-oriented, literary arts journal, no date on publication yet.

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Genre –  Fiction / Coming of Age / Historical

Rating – PG

More details about the author

Connect with Carla Woody on Facebook  & Twitter

Website http://www.kenosis.net/

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