Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Guest Blog by Bishop O'Connell: Why an “American” fairy tale? and Giveaway - August 6, 2014

Please welcome Bishop O'Connell to The Qwillery as part of the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs. The Stolen was published in digital format by Harper Voyager Impulse on July 22, 2014 and is now out in Mass Market Paperback. You may read an Interview with Bishop here.

Why an “American” fairy tale?

The Stolen is the first book in my series, An American Faerie Tale. The obvious question is, why the qualifier? Well, America doesn’t have much myth or legend, or many faerie tales. Yes we have Ichabod Crane and the like, but most of our stories came with the hopeful immigrants who carried them here. I want America to have a mythology, a faerie tale of its own. I want to write not the “great American novel,” but the “great American faerie tale.” But that means it has to reflect America, which means people from other nations should feel something familiar there; a little Italy, Chinatown, little Havana, Irish district, or any other cultural neighborhood. Some might be just a block or two, which in this literary world I’ve formed might be only a page or two, but I hope it’s something that feels like a warm and sincere welcome.

So how do I achieve that familiarity but keep the story “American”? It turns out the two aren’t mutually exclusive. In fact, they’re one and the same. Just consider this simple phrase: e pluribus unum. Out of many, one. It’s the motto of the United States, and what the phrase embodies is what I love most about it. Originally it might have referred to the many states forming one nation, but I think it’s comes to mean more. It’s a cliché, but this nation really is a melting pot, a nation of immigrants. The United States’ culture is a collection and blending of countless other cultures. Most remarkably, none of them are diminished and the whole is made more with each addition. In short, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

So to be an American faerie tale, that’s what I have to achieve with my series. Each book is a snippet, a piece that adds to the whole. The Stolen, the first book, is set in New England, which has a large Irish influence, so that culture is what I focused on. However, in future books I’ll delve into many of the myths and legends that were brought here from all over the world. The Forgotten, the second book, includes the influence of Russian, German, and Native American mythologies. However, I’m very proud of my Irish heritage. My family came to this country along with millions of other Irish and Scots, fleeing death during the Potato Famine. So, Celtic culture will continue to influence the series, but in keeping with the larger theme, it will blend into all the others.

In the natural world, diversity, genetically speaking, is what keeps a species relevant, and I think culturally speaking, it’s what has made these United States that I love all that they are. There are endless stories out there, and they all have their own magic and wonder. Some are terrifying, some beautiful, some truly hysterical. Maybe it’s a sign I’m indecisive, but I don’t want to choose just one for my series, I want them all!

I also want to write an “American” faerie tale because I want to reflect what I think makes America great. But, to truly be American, it must be a tale blending the cultures and heritages that define its citizenry. Individually we might be Irish American, Scots American, Russian American, Mexican American, African American, Native American, and countless other combinations, but together, we’re just Americans. I hope my series achieves the same goal, but with stories. It might be lofty, but I’ve always believed there is no shame in failing if you’re reaching for the stars.

The Stolen
An American Faerie Tale 1
Harper Voyager Impulse, July 22, 2014
     eBook, 336 pages
Harper Voyager Impulse, August 5, 2014
     Mass Market Paperback, 464 pages

Tonight, for the first time in over a century, a mortal child will be kidnapped by faeries.

When her daughter Fiona is snatched from her bed, Caitlin's entire world crumbles. Once certain that faeries were only a fantasy, Caitlin must now accept that these supernatural creatures do exist—and that they have traded in their ancient swords and horses for modern guns and sports cars. Hopelessly outmatched, she accepts help from a trio of unlikely heroes: Eddy, a psychiatrist and novice wizard; Brendan, an outcast Fian warrior; and Dante, a Magister of the fae's Rogue Court. Moving from the busy streets of Boston's suburbs to the shadowy land of Tír na nÓg, Caitlin and her allies will risk everything to save Fiona. But can this disparate quartet conquer their own inner demons and outwit the dark faeries before it's too late?

Mass Market Paperback

You may read an 8 chapter excerpt of The Stolen at Harper Voyager!

About Bishop

Bishop O’Connell is a consultant, writer, poet, blogger, and member of the New Hampshire Writer’s Project. Born in Naples, Italy while his father was stationed in Sardinia, Bishop grew up in San Diego, CA where he fell in love with the ocean and fish tacos. While wandering the country for work and school, he experienced autumn in New England. Soon after, he settled in Manchester, NH, where he collects swords and kilts. But he only dons one of those two in public. He can be found online at A Quiet Pint (, where he muses philosophical on the various aspects of writing and the road to getting published.

A Quiet Pint  ~  Twitter @BishopMOConnell

The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a Mass Market Paperback copy of The Stolen (An American Faerie Tale 1) by Bishop O'Connell from The Qwillery.

How:  Log into and follow the directions in the Rafflecopter below.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59PM US Eastern Time on August 14, 2014. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I have many fables that intrigue me... The one I really love though is Rapunzel. That's because I was born with the bad hair gene and I'd kill to have hair like hers.

  2. Beaty and the Beast. I actually get compared the beast a lot because of my hair... once he turns into the prince that is... haha

  3. .....faerie tales are kinda tricky to do right imo.....