The Deadlands is a new series by author, Skye Melki-Wegner and she shares her inspirations in her guest blog with us! She also talks about the Power of Stories, which we know is vital for young readers.
The Power of Stories
A few years ago, I found myself working at a museum for the summer. Every exhibit had its own highlights, but nothing could generate excitement quite like our dinosaur collection. Every kid — and most of the adults — would squirm in delight at the sight of the gigantic skeletons.
Early one morning, the museum lay still and quiet before opening. In the silence, my imagination stirred. As a fantasy author, I loved to write about groups of friends having dangerous adventures. What if I wrote a book about dinosaurs having adventures? I started picturing ankylosaur battles, tyrannosaurs hunting my heroes across the desert, a gang of misfits struggling to survive…
It was a wild idea – but once it took hold, I couldn’t shake it. And so, even as the crowds rushed in and the silence shattered, the concept of The Deadlands was hatched.
On the surface, The Deadlands is a trilogy about warring dinosaur kingdoms. But it’s also a tale about loyalty, about friendship, and about the power of stories. My protagonist, Eleri, was born to be a warrior, but he dreams of being a storyteller. He collects tales to share with his herd, and to help his friends survive in the Deadlands.
I’ve always viewed fantasy as a lens through which we can examine our own lives, reflecting on topics such as trust and loyalty, conflict and peace. These issues strike at the heart of the choices we make, and the futures we face.
Using our imagination, we can experience life through the eyes of another, whether they be a human, a hobbit… or even a dinosaur! By escaping to another world, we view our own world with fresh perspective. And that, I think, is the ultimate power of fantasy stories.
The Deadlands by Skye Melki-Wegner is published by Walker and available now.
Views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Federation.