For this installment of Celebrating Pagan Fiction, we’re showcasing the work of Erzabet Bishop, whose work I would not have discovered if not for Rebecca Buchanan, so hurrah for both of them!
I’ll be posting a review of Beltaine Fires later on, but suffice it to say that I’ll be seeking out more of her material. For now, let me link you to her newest release in that series, and get on to the interview!
Thank you, Erzabet, for taking the time to answer these questions for us.
What is your pagan tradition/path?
I am very much a solitary tending toward the Sacred Feminine.
How does your particular paganism or spiritual path influence your writing?
I love to bring out the brilliant colors of the Pagan path and the Wheel of the Year into my writing. The elements of the Sacred Feminine touch every aspect of our lives and I like to explore that. Crafts, baking, hearth and home just for starters…
Was it a conscious decision on your part to write about pagan topics or was it a natural outgrowth of ‘writing what you know’?
It was a natural topic for me and actually the first story, Beltane Fires was rejected from an anthology. I took a chance and sent it in to NNP. They loved the idea and a series was born. I have always written about witches with little additions of Pagan elements. Most of the works are still in progress and are YA in nature dealing with kids struggling with identity issues in a world that doesn’t always understand the need for diversity and acceptance.
Do you view your fiction as religious fiction, in that it has either a didactic or an inspirational purpose?
I could see how for some it could be. For me it is a celebration of life, love and happiness in a place I would love to live in. The little community has a host of characters that are interwoven, like a family. There is warmth that I don’t often feel in real life, primarily because too often I have to keep my love of the Sacred Feminine hidden. In Yuletide Temptation I touch a little on discrimination based on religion, but I didn’t want to bog the story down with it too much. It is a bit inspiration and calls the reader to the light of Yule and the celebration of friends, family and fellowship of those around you.
There is an abundance of pagan-friendly stories on the market these days, especially with the gaining popularity and ease of independent publishing. Do you find there is a difference between material written by pagans about pagan or pagan-friendly stories and material written by non-pagans about pagans or pagan-friendly stories?
Yes. A lot of people write Gods and Goddesses like they are superhero characters. That is fine, but you can really tell. In more Pagan stories, you get a depth to what you are reading-an understanding if you will. I think when you write about something you love, it shines through. Pagan friendly stories take the elements of Pagan tradition and weave them in to show the beauty. Non-Pagan often demonize or make it something other than what it is-superhero Gods and spandex wearing Goddesses. Again, that is fine, but it is not what I am striving to bring across in my writing.
Where do you hope to see the future of pagan fiction go?
I hope that Pagan readers will reach out and connect with Pagan authors and support their work. Publishers will only continue to buy what sells and authors need to eat too. Lol. That goes for self publishing as well. While this is a labor of love on many fronts, there is still a need to cover the cost of publishing at the very least.
In my own work, I am hoping to finish my young adult books and get them out there. I also plan to continue writing the Erotic Pagan Series. It is a joy to write and I am longing to explore the next story. I also have a couple of longer Pagan centric works that are in the process with Ylva. Sigil Fire is an urban fantasy lesbian tale set to come out this spring. I am in the editing process with it now and the sequel is already in the planning stages. There are two other stories I am noodling on that will hopefully be finished this year and find a home.
Who are your favorite pagan fiction authors and/or what are the titles of some of your favorite pagan fiction works?
Tara Chevrestt/Sonia Hightower is one of my favorite authors. She writes for Pagan Writer Press and has also done some erotica that is very wonderfully done. (Check out her Mating Instinct here!)
Kiki Howell also has several Pagan friendly books through my publisher Naughty Nights Press.
A book that I read ages ago was Sherwood Forest by Lisa Croll. I have never forgotten it. It takes the Robin Hood myth and brings it to the Sacred Feminine.
Seasons of the Witch is a book by Patricia Monaghan and if you are lucky enough to find the one with the CD, you can hear some amazing poetry and song all dedicated to the Goddess. It makes my heart swell every time I hear it.
Nano Vaslan does a wonderful selection of Pagan erotica.
Because I also review music, I want to mention some musicians and bands that have made a difference in my life:
Faith and Disease
Faith and the Muse
Lastly, tell us where we can find more about your and your available work?
Erzabet Bishop has been crafting stories since she could pound keys on her parent’s old typewriter. She has only just learned that it is a whole lot more fun writing naughty books. She is a contributing author to the Silk Words website, A Christmas To Remember (upcoming), Sweat, When the Clock Strikes Thirteen, Unbound Box, Milk & Cookies & Handcuffs, Holidays in Hell, Corset Magazine: Sex Around the World Issue and Man vs. Machine: The Sex Toy Issue, Smut by the Sea Volume 2, Hell Whore Volume 2, Can’t Get Enough (upcoming, Cleis), Slave Girls (upcoming, Cleis) Anything She Wants, Dirty Little Numbers, Kink-E magazine, Coming Together: Girl on Girl, Shifters and Coming Together: Hungry for Love among others. She is the author of Lipstick (upcoming), Sigil Fire (coming from Ylva in 2014), The Erotic Pagans Series: Beltane Fires, Samhain Shadows and Yuletide Temptation. She lives in Texas with her husband, furry children and can often be found lurking in local bookstores. She loves to bake, make naughty crochet projects and watch monster movies.
Follow her reviews and posts on Twitter @erzabetbishop.
Ylva Author Page: http://www.ylva-publishing.com/ylva-verlag-e.kfr.–erzabet-bishop.html
Naughty Nights Author Page: http://naughtynightspress.com/nnpstore2/index.php?main_page=index&manufacturers_id=28
Unbound Box Dessert Comes First Flash Fiction: https://unboundbox.com/magazine/blog/posts/dessert-comes-first
Liz McMullen episode: http://www.thelizmcmullenshow.com/lbs_episode18/
BDSM Friendbook: http://www.bdsmfriendbook.com/profile-5760/
About Me: http://about.me/erzabet.bishop/#
Facebook “like” page: https://www.facebook.com/erzabetbishopauthor
Author WordPress blog: http://erzabetbishop.wordpress.com/
Amazon author page: http:// amazon.com/author/erzabetbishop/
Author Database: http://authorsdb.com/authors-directory/2690-erzabet-bishop
Authors to Watch: http://www.profiles.authorstowatch.com/2013/05/erzabet-bishop.html