As Folklore Friday rolls into it’s third week, we interview the second of our own authors, Krystalyn Drown, the talent behind the amazing young-adult urban-fantasy Legasea.
Thanks for joining us, Krystalyn. Let’s get this interview started …
Legasea resulted from a conversation I had with Maggie Stiefvater. We had been talking about selkies, and when she learned my last name was Drown, she said I should be writing about them. The next month, a writing group I was in had a contest to write an original synopsis. I chose selkies and won the contest. Still, it was about 6 months before I actually began writing it.
How did you become interested in Irish mythology?
My mom introduced me to the movie The Secret of Roan Inish. It’s a beautiful story about a little girl whose brother disappears into the ocean and her quest to get him back. The movie had a much more traditional take on the selkie tales where the selkie’s skin was stolen and hidden by a human. She couldn’t return to the sea until she found her skin. In Legasea, I took it a step further. The selkie skins are being poached and sold in an illegal trade.
Do you have any other folklore-inspired books in mind or in the works?
I have a book about Santa Claus coming out in October. Other than that, I’m working on a contemporary novel set in a traveling circus.
Stories of selkies have been around for a long time, but unlike a lot of other folk and fairy tales, they haven’t really been overdone in books, film, and television. Did you take that into account when you decided to write about selkies, or did it just sort of pan out that way? Would you like to see more selkies pop up in mainstream media?
It just happened that way. I’m starting to see more books about them, but they are still scarce in movies and TV.
Do you have a favorite fairy tale? Favorite folk or fairy tale adaptation?
Red Riding Hood. I actually wrote a short story about her where her mother used blood when sewing the red cloak. The blood instilled magic into the cloak to make Red invisible to the wolves.
Krystalyn Drown has spent the past thirteen years working at Walt Disney World in a variety of roles: entertainer, talent coordinator, and character captain. Her degree in theatre as well as many, many hours spent in a dance studio, helped with her job there.
Her various other day jobs have included working at Sea World in zoology, as an elementary teacher, and currently as a support technician for a website. In the evenings, she does mad writing challenges with her sister, who is also an author.
Krystalyn lives near Orlando, Florida with her husband, son, a were cat, and a Yorkie with a Napoleon complex.