Thursday, March 14, 2013

DWJ March: Guest Post from Katharina

What Makes Diana Wynne Jones Magical?

The first book by Diana Wynne Jones I read was Power of Three, and I loved it. I began searching for more of her books. Unfortunately, I am German and only very few of her stories had been translated. Imagine my joy when I discovered how many she wrote when my English was finally good enough to visit my Scottish adoptive family. I came home with a pile of books and have been adding every single one she wrote. I was devastated when I heard she died.

What I admire most of her writing is that –unlike other writers– she never, ever writes the same story twice, not even when they feature the same people. Look at other popular writers out there. J.K. Rowling, as talented as she is in worldbuilding, wrote seven books with nearly the same plot. Although the details of the story line, some characters and the sub-villain changed, it was basically the same story over and over and over. The same goes for Wolfgang Hohlbein (very famous German author). They write with a pattern in mind. I'm not saying that's bad, especially in kid-lit. Children like stories to be the same but different. It's just not the way I, personally, like it. I want fresh ideas to ponder, new worlds to discover and new characters to become friends with. I found all this in Diana Wynne Jones's books. She is the only author where I own and have read every single book but one (I haven't gotten round to reading The Skiver's Guide yet). None of my other favorite authors can match that.

If you like fantasy, if you like fresh content, if you love great prose suitable for children, young adults and adults alike, look no further than Diana Wynne Jones.

Ever since I started writing, she's been my gauge. I always ask myself if my stories would appeal to Diana Wynne Jones' fans, and I very much hope the answer is yes. There is no one I admire more, and my dream is to write stories as fantastical and as alive as hers were. If you want to see if I can, get one of my eBooks (Urchin King, Amadi, the Phoenix, the Sphinx, and the Djinn, Scotland's Guardians) or browse my homepage:

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Katharina Gerlach is an agented German author who got tired of waiting for the Big Deal. She is now self-publishing her twisty YA stories as eBooks and printed books in English and German. Her favorite genres are fantasy and historical novels, more often than not with a dash of romance.

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