Kind of a lot like teen girls I used to know.
1. Buffy. Well, obviously. You write a kick-ass heroine and you cannot avoid the Buffy comparisons. Buff is awesome. I love her whole world and the Scoobie Gang and I think Joss Whedon is a god. ‘Once More with Feeling’ is perhaps the greatest 45 minutes of TV history ever. If Billi’s part of the descendents of Buffy, I can live with that because everything about Buffy was quality.
2. Athene. The ultimate Daddy’s girl. Leapt from the head of Zeus, fully clad in armour and ready to bag and tag. She’s no second fiddle to any man. She guided Achilles. She helped Odysseus find his way home. She kicked Ares’s arse in the Trojan War. The god of war himself is scared of her.
3. Kali. Another goddess with impeccable warrior credentials. Ten arms, black-skinned, necklaces of skulls and a long, red blood-lapping tongue. What’s not to love? Out of Hindu mythology she is the gods’ last line of defence. When they’ve all run off in fear, she’s the last one standing. Billi’s heritage has Indian roots. There’s a drop of Kali’s blood in her, that’s for sure.
4. Boudicca, the Iceni queen who tore the heart out of Roman Britain. And she travelled in style too, in a chariot with huge blades sticking out of the side. As every fashionista knows, it’s all about the accessories.
5. Baba Yaga. The Dark Goddess. I love Baba Yaga. That’s why I’ve written a book about her. You’ve probably come across her in her fairy tale version, old witch that lives in the forest in a house that walks on huge chicken legs and flies around in a pestle and mortar. Eats naughty children. Chews them up with her big iron teeth.
DARK GODDESS takes Baba Yaga to her roots. Back when she was worshipped by prehistoric man. She was the guiding mentor in the spiritual awakening of women, the one who initiated girls into women. Taught them the matters of life and death. She’s the Old Crone, the mid-wife who delivers you and then the one who wraps you in your burial shroud. She is the holder of dark and dangerous knowledge and true heroines cannot grow unless they face her. My first book was about Billi discovering what sort of Templar she wanted to be. DARK GODDESS is deciding what sort of woman she’ll become.
It might seem strange for a middle-aged man to be writing about the coming of age of a teen girl, but that’s not all I write about. I write about tragic romance, supernatural horror and sword-fights. A lot of sword fights.
There’s plenty of heroines pondering their romances and whether the gorgeous new guy in their school is the one for them and why no-one understands them like he does and so on and so forth. You don’t need me writing another one of those books.