Guest Post by Donna Maree Hanson: Never Throw Anything Out

Today I've got Donna Maree Hanson stopping by my blog with a guest post. Donna is the author of the recently released Shatterwing and Skywatcher from Momentum Books. I asked Donna to share a little about her inspiration for Shatterwing and the world in which the novel is set. So take it away Donna...


Thank you Justin for hosting me on your blog today. You asked me to write something about how I came to be inspired to write Shatterwing and about the world where the Dragon Wine series is set. It’s quite funny while I think about it. You see it all came together from different places and I guess the moral of my story is— don’t throw anything out.

I wrote the scene with Nils of Barr crossing the town’s cobble stones in a workshop that Trudi Canavan presented back in 2003. That’s where I got the physical description of him and that particular scene. The other parts were little threads of ideas. Later, I came to develop more of his story and its place in the Dragon Wine series.

The same can be said of Shatterwing (the ring of debris above Margra) as that came as idea for a bit of fun about a world with lots of moons and what the surface would be like for the people. I cut a lot of the moons out. I also developed the character Garan at this time and the idea of the Skywatchers. It wasn’t until much later that it came into the story itself.

Salinda and Brill were originally part of a short story I was trying to write and it was two separate ideas. One was a bit like Obi-wan and Luke, you know the old man and the boy. However, my idea was to have the boy say-- get lost and no way! And for the old man to be a woman. Unfortunately it never really jelled properly. That means nobody got it.

I had a vineyard and while I worked on the grapes, spraying sulphur on them to protect them from disease the opening came to mind and that’s where it all got drawn in together. The first chapter (different versions) were a short story but I kept getting feedback that it wasn’t a short story but a novel and that I should write it, so I did.

I didn’t throw any of those separate pieces away and I was able to draw on them to build the world. The moral of the story is as a writer you don’t throw stuff in the bin or delete it because you think it’s crap. You keep it and go back to it to revise and sometimes you appropriate it for something else.

I think ideas are precious, too precious to waste and that’s basically how I put a few of the elements of Margra, the world where the Dragon Wine series is set, together.

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You can buy Shatterwing in print or ebook from Momentum or other major retailers, like Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Barnes and Noble here.

Dragon wine could save them. Or bring about their destruction.

Since the moon shattered, the once peaceful and plentiful world has become a desolate wasteland. Factions fight for ownership of the remaining resources as pieces of the broken moon rain down, bringing chaos, destruction and death.

The most precious of these resources is dragon wine a life-giving drink made from the essence of dragons. But the making of the wine is perilous and so is undertaken by prisoners. Perhaps even more dangerous than the wine production is the Inspector, the sadistic ruler of the prison vineyard who plans to use the precious drink to rule the world.

There are only two people that stand in his way. Brill, a young royal rebel who seeks to bring about revolution, and Salinda, the prison’s best vintner and possessor of a powerful and ancient gift that she is only beginning to understand. To stop the Inspector, Salinda must learn to harness her power so that she and Brill can escape, and stop the dragon wine from falling into the wrong hands.