Monday, June 20, 2011

Get In the Spirit with Guest Blogger: Paty Jager

Meet author Paty Jager at the Book Boost today!

Here's what she had to say about creating a character's spirit...

Characters are the heart of my books and should be the heart of most books in my opinion. I strive to make my characters different from one another and three dimensional. I not only do that with the main characters, the hero and heroine, but also with the major secondary characters.

In my latest release, Spirit of the Lake, it was pretty easy to make the hero and heroine different. Wewukiye (Way-woo-key-ya) the hero is a Nimiipuu(Nez Perce) spirit. When not in his man form he is a bull elk who lives in Wallowa Lake. He is the antlered creature of the lake that is in the Nez Perce legends. He and his brother and sister were made spirits to watch over the Lake Nimiipuu after their father listened to coyote and followed greed and selfishness. His actions killed many of their band and to keep the children safe the Creator took them and made them spirits. For hundreds of years the siblings have watched over the Lake Nimiipuu band and as the Whiteman is encroaching on the Nimiipuu's land there is conflict.

Dove is a Nimiipuu maiden who was raped by a Whiteman who the leaders believe is their friend. They refuse to listen to Dove's challenges that he violated her and ask her to not cause trouble for the band or the army could make them leave their home. After Dove tries to take her life feeling no one believes her and loathing the child growing inside her, Wewukiye takes her to live with his niece. The crazy old woman from Dove's village is the daughter of Wewukiye's older brother who turned mortal and the mortal daughter of a chief.

Crazy One is a secondary character and is the mentor for the two. She talks in questions, sees invisible objects she brushes off people, and can speak with her uncle in her mind as well as know things. When Dove first lives with the woman she finds her hard to understand and wonders about the woman's intelligence. But she soon learns though the woman talks in questions her wisdom and allegiance is greater than any other.

A Note from the Book Boost: Thanks for joining us today, Paty. What a rich and unique world of characters you've created here. Please tell us more about your book.


Two generations after his brother became mortal, Wewukiye, the lake spirit, prevents a Nimiipuu maiden from drowning and becomes caught up in her sorrow and her heart. Her tribe ignores Dove's shameful accusations—a White man took her body, leaving her pregnant, and he plans to take their land.Wewukiye vows to care for her until she gives birth, to help her prove the White man is deceitful and restore her place in her tribe.

As they travel on their quest for justice, Dove reveals spiritual abilities yet unknown in her people, ensnaring Wewukiye’s respect and awe. But can love between a mortal and a spirit grow without consequences?


Wewukiye tugged her hand, drawing her closer. His warm breath puffed against her ear.

"You need only think of me and you will have strength."

His soft silky voice floated through her body like a hot drink.

Dove swallowed the lump in her throat and asked, "When will I see you again?" The thought of sleeping on the hard ground next to the fire in Crazy One's dwelling didn't sound near as inviting as using his lap to rest her head.

The days and nights grew colder; to be wrapped in his arms would warm her through and through.

"You will find me at the meadow every day when the sun is directly overhead." He brushed his lips against her ear.

She closed her eyes, relishing the silky feel of his lips and the heat of his touch.

"Think of me," whispered through her head.

Dove opened her eyes. She stood alone. Her palm still warm from their clasped hands, her ear ringing with his whisper.

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Viola Russell said...

I love stories based on old myths. The premise sounds almost biblical.

Viola Russell said...

The premise here is great. I love stories that evoke ancient myth or hearken back to biblical stories. This sounds like a winning combination.

Paty Jager said...

Hi Viola, I've used the myths and legends I read about the Nez Perce to help give color to the books. Thank you for stopping in.

Lynne Marshall said...

Well-rounded characters (and secondary characters) make or break books for me. Stereotypes drive me nuts! Especially bad guys without one redeeming trait. No one is all bad, right?

Your characters sound fascinating, and I'm sure all of the research you've done shines through this book.

I see my TBR pile getting taller. (at least with my kindle I don't have to dust, you know?) : )

Paty Jager said...

Lynne, I agree characters make or break a book for me. You might not like my villain in Spirit of the Lake because the only scenes he's in he isn't nice. Because I never get into his POV. You only see him through the eyes of Wewukiye and Dove.

And I agree with not having to dust books in a Kindle!

Lynne Marshall said...

Good point about your villain, Paty. We need to get into their POV to see those weaknesses and human issues.

Tanya Hanson said...

Hi Paty, good luck with another great book. I can't wait to read this.

Paty Jager said...

Thanks Tanya! Glad you had a chance to stop in.

Gerri Bowen said...

The story sounds good, Paty, and your cover is beautiful!

Paty Jager said...

Thanks Gerri! Yes, the cover is gorgeous. Rae Monet did a great job on it. Even using Wallowa Lake.