THE SHIFTING POOLS is due for release in July 2017. My blog follows the journey from rough manuscript to published tome!
THE SHIFTING POOLS deals with themes of childhood trauma, loss and dislocation. What happens to an individual decades after a traumatic event: what ways have they found to cope in the world? Can life ever contain joy again? Set between London and an imagined setting of Enanti, it focuses on one woman, Eve Lanner, who has a background rooted in war.
The kernel for this book began over 10 years ago. When I sat down to write it, the first (very!) rough draft came out in 7 weeks. I had been waiting to find the right way to explore the issues running around in my head. The use of some fantasy elements, and dream sequences, allowed a far greater freedom to do this, without the surface details of a particular setting getting in the way.
"You have always thought that Darkness was simply the absence of light, haven't you? Oh Eve! That was never true - there is a whole world out there in the Darkness, seething with life."
It is what Eve has avoided all her adult life - confronting the Shadow Beast that haunts her nightmares. Her energies have been devoted to shutting away this world, this darkness, her past - barricading her into her superficially successful world. Now those walls are crumbling. She must choose whether to reinforce them, or face the elements again, stand in the wind and rediscover the heart of herself.
In a tale that takes her from her empty life in London, to the strange lands of a mystical, elemental realm, from her own shattered core to a new understanding of self - Eve travels on a journey into her fragmented soul, asking for a redemption she cannot conceive. Via the mysterious Shifting Pools, she enters a strange and subtly magical place, which mirrors her own inner landscapes, finding herself thrust back into war. Here she must stand or fall. Find the missing pieces of herself, or abandon them forever.
Our fundamental affinity with the elements, and Jung’s vision of the unconscious talking to us urgently through dream, underpin this evocative tale. Lyrical and insightful, charged throughout with a sense of the beautiful urgency of life, THE SHIFTING POOLS offers a unique way of looking at the wounds of war, the act of remembering, the fragmentation of self, the inexorable seeping of the past into our present, and finding a way home.
And how all we have lost remains a part of us.