#DVPit is about halfway over, and I’ve had some AH-MAZING agents make partial requests, putting the agents with my manuscript up to… lucky number 13!
I really wanted to explore my Russian heritage when I wrote this book. I didn’t know I was part Russian until I did genealogy research after college – I’d always felt this inexplicable draw to the culture, and people had always told me I had a Slavic nose, and I kept dreaming about Baba Yaga sending me on delivery routes aback Grey Wolf or making me milk a golden cow with silver udders – but it didn’t really cement until I learned I’m a direct descendant of Vladimir the Great (Saint Vladimir) and Vladimir Monomakh, also this awesome cave prophetess named Malusha.
One of my dying dreams is to go to Russia and visit Gogol and Pushkin’s homes. This novel wouldn’t have been created without Cat Valente’s unbelievably amazing Deathless, which really inspired me at 21 to finally write that Russian novel that had been in my head since age 19. Dreams of Morena, Veles, and Perun would follow, and so would obsessively watching Tchaikovsky and Stravinsky ballets and listening to Mussorgsky on repeat.
I’m obsessed with Russian folklore. Libby and I both took an entire class dedicated to it, and I lifted the name Morozko from our favorite Soviet film. What intrigued me the most were the nechist, or land and house spirits – the domovoi and rusalka, the vila and bannik (why did I try to make a bannik hot!) But above all, it was for the love of leshys that I retold an entire ballet. Also for Baba Yaga, because my babushka is amazing, and crazy af.
Hopefully I’ll have an agent soon – I will probably spontaneously combust if I get an offer, but I’ll keep you all updated accordingly!