Today I would like to welcome Alina Popescu as a guest on the blog. I have to admit, I was very intrigued by her post. Why? Because she’s talking about playing with angels! I love dystopian stories, but angels are not an everyday topic for most of us – and not one I’d ever considered exploring in my writing. Fortunately, her new book, Angel’s Feather is due out on April 21st, so we can find out a bit more about it below.
Why I Love Playing with Angels in My Writing
I’ve always loved to look into mythology and pluck bits and pieces to put a new twist on through my writing. I grew up with Greek myths of gods, goddesses, and the heroes they helped or plagued. Later on I discovered Roman culture and their take on the Greek gods. As I started reading more, studying ancient history and religions in school, I’ve uncovered even more gems. All of them inspired stories in my head, of which some stayed with me.
Angels in particular have always fascinated me. This concept of superior, heavenly beings, aloof and untouchable, to watch over humans. They were perceived as pure, yet they were punishers, warriors, bringers of death. These contradictions have always intrigued me, just as much as the idea that they should love the humans they were watching over. A bit forced, wasn’t it? And just look what happened to Lucifer when he got a little jealous.
I’ve always liked to play with angels’ likeness to humans, and whether I kept them as celestial, fantastic beings, or morphed them into something else, I made sure they had flaws. Some of these flaws came from their very nature, or lack of understanding of things they had no first-hand experience with. Others came from their alien nature, their different approach to life and duty, and their perception of themselves.
In my most recent gay science fiction novella Angel’s Feather, my dystopian world is populated with flyers, alien creatures reminiscent of angels in ancient religious writings. On a decaying Earth that has forsaken many things, religion included, people still sometimes refer to their alien guardians as angels, the images and associated word to define them embedded in their collective heritage.
Unlike angels of old, these flyers are most hated. They are enforcers of rules humans dislike. Just like their heavenly host counterparts, they are removed from human society, watching over them from afar. They do not mix with humans, do not mate with them, and getting too attached is seen as a sin, for both the human and the flyer.
It was quite fun and intriguing to explore how humans would process the fear, reverence, and need to obey creatures that look like angels, wings and all. It was equally gratifying to make angels fall: love, want to protect, to possess. As it was the case for the biblical fallen, when a flyer connected to a human, they morphed into something else. They experienced foreign feelings, they acted differently, in ways they didn’t even realize.
Of course, this is not the first time I’ve played with angels, giving them individuality and human characteristics, like a sexuality. I am known to have mated an angel with a succubus in a fantasy story. Still, there’s nothing like exploring religious symbols and beliefs in science fiction settings! I learned that while reading Asimov’s I, Robot and marveling at the thought process of God-worshipping robots. So what started as an anthology short story turned into a novella, and that’s how Angel’s Feather was born. As I was writing it, about two thirds into it, I realized this was going to be a trilogy…
Do you have any symbols or beings or sources of inspiration you like to explore in the books you read or write? Would love to hear from you in the comments!
Angel’s Feather – Flyer Chronicles, Book One
Genre: Science Fiction
Buy at: Amazon
How far would you go for the one you love? How much of yourself would you sacrifice?
Trapped on a decaying Earth and cut off from the rest of the Universe, humans are no longer allowed to leave their planet. Break this one law and you die: a penalty enforced by flyers, aliens who look like angels of long-lost religions. Michael, the flyers’ leader, is the Punisher who carries out every public execution.
Adam, a young human with near-perfect memory, is committed to rebuilding Earth and a true believer in the flyers’ dominion. While Adam’s support for flyers isn’t a secret, his deep love for Michael is. Not even Michael knows, for his kind never take human lovers, and to Adam, they are too far above him to reach.
In his broken and unwelcoming world, Adam’s love can only lead to pain, loss, and disaster. Yet there is no force in the huge expanse of stars and galaxies that can stop Adam from following Michael to the end of existence. Not even Adam’s own beliefs.
About Alina Popescu
Writer, traveler, and coffee addict, Alina Popescu has been in love with books all her life. She started writing when she was ten and she has always been drawn to sci-fi, fantasy, and the supernatural realm. Born and raised in Romania, she finds her inspiration in books of all genres, in movies, and the occasional manga comic book. She is a proud geek who needs her fast Internet and gadgets more than she needs air.
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