Seeing the Light is my first “on my own” novel. Why on my own? Because I’ve done a fair bit of collaborative writing over the past few years. My cohorts and I wrote Women of the Apocalypse, and even won a couple of Aurora Awards (a Canadian scifi/fantasy award) for it. Then we worked on an online writing experiment called The 10th Circle Project. That effort got us another Aurora, and a real appreciation for all those magazine publishers who put out four magazines a year! What a lot of work! Last year, we had a collaborative novel called The Puzzle Box published, and three of the four stories in it were nominated for Auroras, plus the book itself.
As you can see, I was doing lots of work, and lots of collaboration! However...
I kept working on my own stories while I was doing all that collaborating. Last year Tyche Books out of Calgary accepted Seeing the Light. So here I am, finally an “on my own” novelist!
Seeing the Light is a paranormal mystery, with big dollops of humour and romance. I actually started writing it years ago when I decided I wanted to try the 3 Day Novel Contest,. For those of you who do not know about the 3 Day Novel Contest -- basically, you pay $50, and then you try to write a novel. In three days.
It was only novella length, true, and I’d written it entirely from the dead guy’s point of view, but I loved it enough to “grow” it to full novel length, and to let the main character, Marie Jenner, tell her own story. (She brought the humour and the romance to the story. Thank goodness!)
The story is based in Edmonton, Alberta, as almost all of my stories are, and the Palais Office Building, where most of the action occurs, is based on the Arlington, the first apartment building built in Edmonton. It had fallen into disrepair over the years, and then, when it was given a historical designation and needed to be rebuilt, it burnt. Twice, I think. The second time, it couldn’t be saved. You can still see the hole where it used to sit, at the corner of 100 Avenue and 106 Street in downtown Edmonton.
I decided that burning it down wasn’t good enough for that grand old building, and so I blew it up! (In my book, of course.)
For those of you who want to write, but don’t think you have the time--I would suggest attempting the 3 Day Novel Contest. If you want something a little less strenuous, perhaps the month long NaNoWriMo contest would be a good starting off point. (That one’s free.) You can find both contests online, so check them out. They might be the beginning of something wonderful, like they were for me!
One lucky reader who comments on my blog will be randomly selected to win an ebook version (mobi, epub, or pdf versions available) of Seeing the Light. Good luck to you all!
Marie Jenner has never had much luck. Her job sucks. Her apartment—the one with the unbreakable lease—has a ghost. And worst of all, her mother won’t let up about her joining the “family business.” Since that business is moving the spirits of the dead on to the next plane of existence and doesn’t pay at all, Marie’s not interested. She wants a normal job—a normal life. That’s not too much to ask, is it?
Apparently, it is. Even when she applies for the job of her dreams, Marie doesn’t get what she wants. Well, not entirely. She does get the job — but she also gets another ghost. Farley Hewitt, the newly dead caretaker of the building, wants her to prove his death is not an accident, and she’s pretty sure he’s going to haunt her until she does.
All she wants is normal. She isn’t going to get it.
Seeing the Light is the first in the Marie Jenner Mystery Series.
Where Seeing the Light is available:
About the author:
Eileen Bell (AKA E.C. Bell) has had short fiction published in magazines and several anthologies, including the double Aurora Award winning Women of the Apocalypse, the Aurora winning Bourbon and Eggnog, and the Aurora nominated The Puzzle Box. Her debut novel, Seeing the Light was launched in October, 2014. You can keep up with her exploits on her blog www.eileenbell.com .