GUEST POST: J.A. George, author of GIFTED

Friday, May 27, 2016
Hello there!
GIFTED is my first published novel and that means you’ve probably never heard of me, so allow me to introduce myself. My name is J.A. George and I’m the author of GIFTED The Hayven Series. I thought I’d take this guest post opportunity to write about the different stages of writing Gifted. But I’ll tell you what it’s about before I move forward.  
There is no chosen one in this story.
She was just in the wrong place at the wrong time and happened to make a decision that altered her future forever. It happens to all of us every day.
Avery Gray is a size twelve university student with a penchant for dry humour, and she’s as normal as they come. One rainy afternoon, Avery had to make a choice: go through the alleyway or around it. Two possible options. One would have had her future continue on as planned, the other would ensure that her future never remained the same again. She unknowingly went with the latter.
Change can be good. It can bring new opportunities, new friends and a life you never thought possible. Change can be bad. It can bring you people determined to burn your city to the ground.
It all depends on the decisions you make.

As you’ve probably guessed from the blurb, GIFTED fits into a few different genres, but I would categorize it as a contemporary young adult fantasy with a few bits of romance (not much! You’ve been warned), comedy (well, it made me laugh a few times), adventure and mystery.
Avery, or as she’s commonly known, Ava, is my main character, and possibly my favourite (it changes every day). This published version of GIFTED is my second edition and in my first edition Avery was completely different. In the past, I’ve had problems with writing for other people and in my first edition of GIFTED, I tried to write a novel with a character that everyone would love to read. However, since subjectivity and different tastes exist, that just isn’t possible. So after two years, I decided to write for myself. Long story made incredibly short, Ava was a bit boring, in my opinion, because I was trying to follow trends I’d seen before, trying to fit her into too many different boxes. So I transformed her into a character I’d want to meet if I got the chance. Now, I just love her. She makes me laugh a lot. I hope she’ll make you laugh too.
Where did I get the idea of my novel from? I have no idea! Yet, it would be nothing short of a lie if I told you it simply fell into my head one day, even though it often does feel like that’s exactly what happened. There are three reasons I can attribute to why I wrote Gifted.
Firstly, I wanted to read it. I wanted to read about a contemporary YA fantasy that doesn’t feature instant-love, a chosen one or a girl who kicks butt on a daily basis. I wanted someone real, someone I could relate to. Then I added other elements I wanted to read. Which now that I come to think of it, is probably why GIFTED fits into a few different categories; I like to read a lot of different genres.
The concept of being gifted, well, that stemmed from me. No, unfortunately, I am not supernaturally gifted (yet), but I am obsessed with people who are different. Now, when I say ‘different’, I don’t mean they have the gifts my characters have, such as, pre-cognition, shape-shifting, weather control, and earth manipulation, I just mean…different. The characters in GIFTED have supernatural gifts, but without the gifts they are still different; they’re an eclectic bunch. I like the idea of ordinary people being extra-ordinary in some way or another, whether it’s to do with their artistic capabilities, the way their brain works, or their imagination and creativity. Because of this, I made a city full of normal people with gifts and personalities that are anything but normal, anything but ordinary and boring. They’re only “normal” in the sense that they’re not, you know…mentally insane.
When it comes to settings in GIFTED, I have two. I knew from the get-go that I wanted one of them to be based in the UK, but instead of using a town that already exists, I made one up – Huxton. Why make up a town when you have so many options at your disposal, I hear you ask. Well, it was so much more fun to make up my own world because really, anything goes; no-one can tell you the place you’ve made up isn’t exact or accurate because well, you’ve made it up, so of course it isn’t! Same goes for my fantasy setting – Hayven, a city in a country separated from the rest of the world where only gifters (ordinary people with extra-ordinary gifts) can go.
As for the title GIFTED, well, it just seemed the most appropriate. I wanted to summarise the entire book in one word for the title and I think it does that really well. I will follow this trend with the other three books that form the rest of the series. GIFTED is a title that graces the cover of other books out there, but I didn’t want to change the title because nothing suits it as much. So I added a subtitle and called my series, The Hayven Series.
Alright, I could whitter on for a long time about GIFTED, but I’d hate for you to get bored. If my ramblings weren’t enough for you, check out my blog! There’s ramblings galore over there.
Thank you, Alexandra, for allowing me to post on your blog. It’s been fun!
J.A. George
Twitter: @JGeorge_

1 comment :

  1. Aw, what a sweet guest post! I like how there are different genres featured in this book, and how there ISN'T a Chosen One in this story - god knows we have a multitude of those characters in YA lit!

    Yay for fantasy settings as well. :P Those are my fave settings.

    - Aila @ One Way Or An Author