J. Aleksandr Wootton is an author, poet, and bookworm (in the Tolkienic meaning of ‘worm’ as ‘dragon’ – he hoards books in shelves and spare rooms and likes to sleep surrounded by them). In his spare time he chairs the Folklore Studies department at Lightfoot College, where his research focuses on post-war Faerie.
Her Unwelcome Inheritance (Fayborn #1)
Paperback ISBN: 978-1491291009
ebook ISBN: 9781301949687
August 18 2013
The Eighth Square (Fayborn #2)
Paperback ISBN: 978-1492860945
ebook ISBN: 9781301752799
October 8 2013
A First or Final Mischief (Fayborn #3)
Release Date TBA
Muninn Wandering (illustrated poetry collection #1)
Paperback ISBN: 9781511595193
September 21 2015
Domestaccato (illustrated poetry collection #2)
Release Date TBA
SOCIAL MEDIA & CONTACT
“The book is pure magic. It’s like a modern version of Alice in Wonderland with a touch of Narnia. … Her Unwelcome Inheritance is an extraordinary story I can recommend to every fantasy lover, or just someone who wants to believe in magic… again.”
“Intricate craftsmanship of plot, characters, and descriptions [are] woven into Wootton’s world. He has taken bits of fairytales, mythology, legend, even Shakespeare and built an entirely new epic around them.”
“[Wootton’s] writing expresses imagination in a concrete, muscular way, without falling in love with its own ingenuity or command of language. It surprises the reader with originality, but relies on strong, traditional storytelling for its ownership of the reader’s attention.”
-Ian Caldwell, NYT bestselling author of The Rule of Four and The Fifth Gospel
“This story pulled me right in. It’s tough to find good fantasy books, that have that delicious thrill, that remind you why you started reading fantasy in the first place. This is one of them. …Petra is a great character, warm and convincing, with a stubborn streak and a loving heart. Wootton has a light touch, creating real living people with a minimum of fuss.”
-Masha du Toit, author of The Story Trap, Crooks & Straights, and The Babylon Eye
5 FAVORITE INTERVIEW QUESTIONS:
1. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? – Asli Fratarcangeli, Yah Gotta Read This! Magazine
I am deeply convinced that we have not outgrown fairytales.
From time to time societies experience hubristic fits of scientific or religious enlightenment, during which people come to believe that they can safely ignore, scorn, or abandon “simple” folk wisdom – only to discover on down the road that they really ought to have spent a few minutes sitting at the feet of the old woman or the uneducated man. It turns out they knew something valuable about life after all.
When we ignore fairytales, we find ourselves living inside them: not as heroes, but as byword-characters – chumps whose mistakes serve as warnings to those who come after us.
2. Why do you write? – Faiza Iqbal, The Book Repository Blog
A big part of my motivation with the Fayborn series is to pay tribute to books I’ve loved.
While I’ve never gotten into fan-fic, I love clever allusions and new imaginings of great stories – it’s like meeting old friends in unexpected places for new adventures.
Her Unwelcome Inheritance is thick with references to many of my favorite stories – the ‘further reading’ list is 3+ pages and counting. (Read the whole list here).
3. What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment? – Lisa Pottgen, Just Another Rabid Reader Blog
I learned to outline from Ian Caldwell (author of the NYT bestseller The Rule of Four). I spent my first semester of a one-year novel writing course with him telling me “your outline is not ready, revise it and write it again.” At times it was extremely frustrating, but once I realized that I needed to give up my preconceptions about the story I was telling the plot for that particular project got a lot stronger.
The best compliments I get are often on my nonfiction pieces, essays where a particular phrase or paragraph is exactly what one of my readers feels, or has always wanted to say, but didn’t quite have the words. I’m not sure a writer can receive a better compliment than that.
In particular, On the Supposed Unsuitability of Fairytales for Children has been widely shared across the Web and strongly resonates with readers wherever it’s posted.
4. What inspired you to write Her Unwelcome Inheritance? – Delia MacDonald, Wolf Majick Reviews
Well, first, I was very excited by the various premises of the story, which sort of accosted me like a series of meteorite strikes:
Refugees from a civil war in Faerie hide on earth and become the source for most of our mythology and folklore. Protective enchantments preventing accurate records from being made on earth about Faerie or the Fay, and the resulting importance of oral storytelling and lapse of historical knowledge. Finally, a modern girl who doesn’t know her own importance, being pursued by people from an ancient, broken, and magical world – the very idea totally at odds with her everyday life.
Who wouldn’t get excited about that?
Then, the story began to shape itself around some questions that I wanted to explore – questions about achieving self-identity, the relationship between rationality and wisdom, the meaning of family.
Of course these are all questions that fairytales and folklore have been posing and answering for centuries, so it quickly become a very passionate project.
5. If you were to have a pseudonym, what would it be? – Rachael Rippon, author of The Bagman
I do have a pseudonym, and it is: J. Aleksandr Wootton.
It’s a riddle, smithed from hammered-together literary references.
6. Bonus Question: If you could be any character from any novel, who would you be? – Rachael Rippon
What a scary thought! What author would want some other author to have that much control over their lives??