Q&A: Shawn Lamb
Prophecy describes the heir of Ellis, king of Allon, as "Allon's greatest king; of such a heritage as to rule Guardian and mortal alike" but Ellis is reluctant to decide on a husband for his daughter, Ellan. When he finally does choose, he unwittingly invites an old enemy into his household. Now it's up to an unlikely group of heroes to stop a coup and save Allon.
A Question Of Sovereignty is the fourth book in Shawn Lamb's Allon series.
WHAT LED YOU TO WRITE A QUESTION OF SOVEREIGNTY?
A Question of Sovereignty is the 4th book in the ALLON YA fantasy series. The series started at the request of my daughter, who likes fantasy in style of Lewis and Tolkien and didn’t want to read anything to dark – no witches or vampires.
I was originally only going to write one book, but when she told her friends, they became intrigued that her mom was writing her a story. They came over to the house to talk about the storyline. One thing led to another and the discussions took on a personal tone. Most of these kids were immigrants or children of immigrants and came from various cultures and religions such as Iraqi, Somalia, Laos, Egypt, and Kenya – primarily Muslim and Buddhist. They began asking Why do Americans act like this? Why do Christians believe this? But the main thing they were searching for and seemed elusive to them is ‘hope’. Even coming to America was a disappointment.
The rest of the series came in response to those discussions, answering the questions – and always point toward hope. Question of Sovereignty is the 4th of 9 total books.
STARTING OUT, WHO WERE THE AUTHORS WHO INSPIRED YOU? WHO INSPIRES YOU NOW?
As a kid and teenager, I loved historical fiction – John Jakes, Taylor Caldwell, Mary Stewart and Alistair MacLean where among my favorite. There wasn’t a lot of Christian fiction when I was kid in 1960s and 70s, but most of the books were clean of too much explicit material.
HOW DOES YOUR FAITH INFLUENCE YOUR WRITING?
It has a definite impact. I’ve been a Christian for well over 30 years, so I can’t separate my belief from any aspect of my life. In ALLON, the references are allegorical yet paramount. Christians easily recognize the themes and meanings. I’ve even had atheists read ALLON and understand who and what I’m talking about.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU KNOWN YOU WANTED TO BE AN AUTHOR?
I started writing when I was a teenager. In fact, when my daughter asked for fantasy, I didn’t know where to start since I was big into historical and pursued that genre for publication. When praying about how to proceed, I recalled some old papers I had. To my surprise, I found a fantasy story I wrote when I was 16! I even completed the 1st chapter, drew the map and named the characters and provinces. God was clearly working, for what are the odds of keeping papers over 30 years old? This story became the foundation for ALLON.
WHAT DO YOU MOST HOPE THAT READERS GET FROM READING YOUR WORK?
I deal with many tough issues facing kids, and do not shy away from the consequences of bad moral choices. We don’t act in a bubble. Our actions affect others. These are areas magic can’t help. Personal integrity, belief and character do matter.