Guest Blog: Rebecca Maizel “Layers of Infinite Days

Today, we are thrilled to present an exclusive guest blog from Infinite Days author Rebecca Maizel — and we’re flattered that the focus of her guest blog is our Book of the Month feature, itself! We put a lot of love and effort into our Book of the Month posts, and we’re always delighted by the reactions we get from the authors we work with. (The Novel Novice staff tends to share lots of our own fan girl moments over e-mail & Facebook.) Thanks, once again, to Rebecca for writing this guest blog and for all her other contributions to this month’s features!

When Sara of Novel Novice asked me if Infinite Days could be the book of the month of course, I said yes. Little did I know how comprehensive it would be. My mind has been completely blown. So many of these posts are well thought out, informative and interesting. I loved the wallpaper posts (with photos by my friend Vania of VLC productions), the Order of the Garter post and the Gothic elements post. Yet I was really struck by the post on the IDays playlist as well as the post on the herbs and flowers. I’m going to use this space to talk about one purposeful layer of Infinite Days and why it is that these two posts stuck out to me among all of the rest.

A friend of mine, who is trustworthy and amazing, linked me to a review of Infinite Days by Rachel Rivera over at Parajunkee. Here’s an excerpt from the review which I think makes it so relevant and important:

…at first, the supposed idiosyncrasies stuck out like a sore thumb to me. Like why would a 500 year old vampire have to attend high school? Secondly, why would a 500 year old killer let stupid 16 year old girls bully her? Those kind of got into my “craw” so-to-speak, but then on deeper reflection I began to realize that there really are two people, Lenah the vampire and Lenah the human. These aren’t your soul-possessing, huggable, lovable vamps – upon the change into vampire all humanity is lost – so technically, while Lenah is in possession of her vampire memories, she really is a “new” person. So, once I ditched that POV I was able to embrace the novel, immerse myself in Maizel’s voice…

Yes! Essentially, Lenah is two people – a dichotomy is created with the completion of the ritual. If you look back on your life, ten, twenty years ago, it’s difficult to access who you were. It’s difficult to recall the details of your life the more time that goes by, the details are muted. For Lenah, her vampire past is incredibly difficult to access, even just days after her transformation. Humanity is literally overwhelming. She can finally break away from the anger that has plagued her for centuries.

The herbs and flowers that Lenah accesses throughout the book are the constant in both Lenah’s vampire life as well as her human life. While she is a vampire they link her to the humanity she lost. This is what she knows for comfort. Many of us, in times of peril go to what we know; these herbs and flowers are what Lenah knows. Her desire to touch flowers, be around herbs, etc allowed me to create something tangible for Lenah to touch as well as for the reader. The herbs and flowers post really hit home for me when I saw just how detailed it was – it reinforced for me how important this aspect of Infinite Days was to the plot and to the reader.

Onto the second post – the playlist. Stephenie Meyer is known for posting hers. I loved the idea of posting mine for Infinite Days. An author can really access a scene through music. So how does music translate when writing a novel? Well, we are a really visual culture. We watch TV, movies, etc. Almost all the scenes we watch on TV are choreographed to music. As a writer of today’s contemporary YA I think it’s safe to say that we’re conditioned to think cinematically; our readers certainly are. The music really helps me access the emotional heart of a scene if my characters won’t do the talking – the music moves me emotionally so in turn it moves my characters. That playlist plus a host of others I’ll post on my blog later this week really helped me while writing Infinite Days and its sequel, Stolen Nights.

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Novel Novice! What an incredible month, every post has been wonderful and your efforts are appreciated. Can’t wait to see what you think of Stolen Nights!

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