Rachel Ann Michael Harris is the writer of middle grade fantasy stories (most of the time). She has an ecliptic taste in stories which comes through her writing, working in any genre she finds interesting. First moved to write when she was thirteen years old, Rachel has gone on to have pieces published in several anthologies, on Havok Publishing’s website, and self-published her first novella, The Beauty of Magic. When not writing (which is more often than she’d like), you can find her reading, binge-watching TV, or brainstorming new stories. You can find her and her dog online on Facebook, Instagram, and website at rachelannmichaelharris.wordpress.com.


What anime/manga/light novel inspired your short story?
My main character, Aidin, was inspired by Link from Legend of Zelda and Zeno from Yona of the Dawn. In Legend of Zelda, Link has the main mission of saving Zelda, but he also stops and helps a lot of other inhabitants of Hyrule along the way. They can be big or small things of everyday life. He always gives his time even though he has this bigger mission that some of those others don't know about. With Zeno, *SPOILER*, it was the story of his immortality, at a young age, that intrigued me. How he struggled to go on and the loneliness. It was mixing these two that created Aidin. I chose to tell it from Amelia's POV because I wanted to show him through someone else's eyes, someone who doesn't know everything about him and leaves some mystery on all that is going on with him. But it also allowed me to show what his participation in her life meant to her, even if it was just a few times.
What was your process like for writing this story? Did you have a specific idea for the ending or a theme you wanted to write around?
I wanted a good story that would introduce Aidin and give his background. I have several ideas for more stories for Aidin but I needed one that revealed some of his past. I also wanted to explore staying young for eternity and continuing on as everything else moved on around you. 
What was your favorite part about writing this story?  Was there anything challenging about it?
Figuring out how to share the origin story without just telling or being an info dump and subtle revealing it in written form instead of visual. I really enjoyed writing both of these characters. I really liked them.
Do you have a favorite sentence or quote or paragraph from the story?
I really like what Aidin told Amelia about Eben at the end of the story, when he was encouraging her not to give up even though she was in a dark time. It is something I need to remember more myself when things get hard.
Can you tell us about one character in the story? Any insights into who they are as a character that we didn’t get to see in the story?
Amelia's story has pretty much been told so it would be Aidin. In the story, he carries a sword yet he doesn't use it in this story. Yet, it is there for a purpose. I have ideas for at least 2-3 more stories, one of which allows him to use that sword.
Can you briefly share about your other works? Where can people find you if they want to read more?
I write a lot of flash fiction for Havok Publishing, who I also volunteer with in their marketing department. I even have a couple of story worlds I created and published with them but haven't written a Wandering Warrior story for them yet. Their most recent anthology, Casting Call, has a story from one of those story worlds. They will have another anthology releasing in the fall, Animal Kingdom, but I can't reveal too much on that one yet. I also released a fairy tale retelling novella last year called The Beauty of Magic. It is a mash-up of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Goldie Locks with a heroine who can take care of herself. You can follow my on Facebook and Instagram and my website at  rachelannmichaelharris.wordpress.com.
The spring of eternal life is so mysterious! Is it completely inaccessible, or is it Aidin's mission to keep others away from it?
It is completely inaccessible. The spring is a lose (very lose) retelling of the Garden of Eden. The spring is the tree and the battle is between the fallen and the faithful. The ones who became immortal are like the angels who watch over us.
How does Aidin feel about being immortal? Is it a positive thing overall, or are there drawbacks?
It is a positive thing but it weighs on him as well. He is faithful and dedicated to Eben and his mission but it can be tiring and lonely protecting the world from other immortals. All his family has long since grown old and passed on and since he doesn't age it can be hard to connect with others. There are other immortals that have the same mission as him but he doesn't travel with them so it can be a solitary road that he can't share with too many others. 
The world of this story clearly has a rich history. Is there a part of that history that you didn't get to include, but would like to share here?
Nothing specifically comes to mind. Showing more the the people who live here is something I would enjoy writing about later. As well as letting readers meet the Red Cloaks. I might rethink that name though.

Author Interview - Rachel Ann Michael Harris

09 July 2022

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