I first started writing the bare bones of Rapunculus without any notion of writing a work of juvenile fiction. I suppose I had this very serious image of a dark fantasy novel in mind…until I read the first ten chapters of what I wrote and burst out laughing. It was weird; I didn’t expect to laugh, I didn’t want to laugh, but that was exactly what happened. This book was supposed to be morbid and scary and yet, for some reason, I couldn’t take it seriously. From there I decided to rewrite the whole thing as a comedy and aim it at a much younger audience.
Rapunculus is a sort of bizarre mashup of the folklore of various cultures, particularly German and Slavic, but a more satirical take. I drew heavily from my childhood obsession with trying to draw like Arthur Rackham and M.C. Esher. Most of the characters and locations in the story began as drawings without names or identities. Slowly but surely these vague shadows evolved into characters, which then began to direct the plot and story line themselves. I used to have pretty bad writer’s block, but somehow writing this was more like a long, continuous dream.
I hope you check out the book, and that you enjoy enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it 🙂