Eight years ago, everything changed for Devlin: Her country was attacked. Her father was killed. And her mother became the Whisperer ofAris, the head of the spies, retreating into her position away from everyone… even her daughter.Joining the spy ranks herself, Dev sees her mother only when receiving assignments. She wants more, but she understands the peril their country, Aris, is in.The malevolent magic force of The Mists is swallowing Aris’s edges, their country is vulnerable to another attack from their wealthier neighbor, and the magic casters who protect them from both are burning out.Dev has known strength and survival her whole life, but with a dangerous new assignment of infiltrating the royal court of their neighbor country Cerena to steal the magic they need, she learns that not all that glitters is weak. And not all stories are true.
1. What inspired you to write this book, or how did the idea start?
When I start writing a book, it is often the magic system that comes to me first. In this case, I had an idea for this malevolent magical force that was slowly swallowing up every corner of a world and that had monsters of silvered lightning within it.
Once I had that seed of an idea, I had to decide what sort of characters I wanted to populate the world with. At first I thought of selecting a mage as a main character, but I wanted someone different: someone who wouldn’t be able to beat magic with magic but who had to beat magic with her mind and other skills. I’ve always found spies fascinating, and so I settled on the idea to make the main character a spy.
2. What, if anything, did you learn when writing the book?
Writers always joke that you should never look at their search history. For this book, I had to research spies (from the past) which also meant researching what sort of weapons they might have used and how those weapons worked. So yes, don’t look at my search history.
3. What surprised you the most in writing it?
What surprised me the most was everything that I discovered about the world. I started with a basic idea, but I quickly discovered all these nooks and crannies to the world that I couldn’t have imagined when I first started (for example, of the two countries in the book, one quickly moved in a science-oriented direction and the other in an art-oriented direction, which I wasn’t expecting).
World-building is one of my favorite aspects of writing, so I loved being able to expand the world and learn more about it as I wrote.
4. If it’s not a spoiler, what does the title mean?
It’s definitely not a spoiler. The Mists is the name of the malevolent magical force in the book (as you can probably guess from the name, it looks like mists).
For the silver part, the magic that the characters use in the book is called casting and it creates a beautiful magic that looks like silver filigree. So that is the silver reference in the title.
5. Were any of the characters inspired by real people? If so, do they know?
Devlin was heavily inspired by me. Well, at least in identity (we’re both aroace). I’d like to say Devlin and I are similar personality-wise, but I’m probably a closer personality match to Alyse since we’re both cinnamon rolls.
6. Do you consider the book to have a lesson or moral?
I don’t like to be too heavy-handed with lessons or morals in my books, but I do like writing towards the characters realizing something about themselves and their world. In this case, the characters have to learn to work together and to trust each other, even though they have all of this bad history between them. The book is about learning to find those similarities that unite people.
7. What is your favorite part of the book?
I definitely have some favorite parts that are quite spoiler-y, but one that isn’t a spoiler is when Devlin first goes undercover as a lady of the court and meets Alyse. It was really fun writing the sort of dance that was the beginning of their relationship, as Devlin was trying to learn all of these new court rules while still getting the trust and information that she needed from Alyse.
8. Which character was most challenging to create? Why?
I would say Devlin’s mother, the Whisperer (head spy) of Aris. Devlin and her mother have a very complicated relationship and at times her mother is an antagonistic force. However, I wanted to explore all the different sides of her and the relationship that she has with her daughter, not just the negative parts. I hope I did a good job on her and that she’ll have some surprises in store for you!
9. What are your immediate future plans?
Most immediately, of course, is just making sure to have fun with the first few weeks of Silver in the Mist’s release. My last book, This Golden Flame, came out during the height of the pandemic and the restrictions, so this book release will be my first time really doing things in person.
For books, though, my next release will be a short story in the anthology Being Ace. I’m also working on a full-length work.
Emily Victoria is an aroace Canadian prairie girl who writes young adult science fiction and fantasy. When not word-smithing, she likes walking her over-excitable dog, drinking far too much tea, and crocheting things she no longer has the space to store. Her librarian degree allows her to take home far too many books.