“The Undine’s Tear” is the first book in a trilogy by former Sylvan Lake resident Talena Winters, out now.
Winters says it is hard to describe the genre of her young adult novel, as she likes to play within many different genres.
“It could be describe as science fantasy or as historical urban fantasy… they are very similar and have many of the same elements,” Winters said when asked to describe her latest book. “I like to mash up genres when I write.”
The novel is set in a “post-Atlantean” society where mermaids, which Winters calls undine, capture human men.
She says a lot of research went into this book to mix in the fantasy and myth behind mermaids with the real world.
“This book basically answers my question of ‘what happened to all the mermen?’” she said.
The idea came to her while watching a mermaid show nearly 10 years ago, and at that point she had never written fiction.
Because the idea stuck with her she ended up taking a course on how to write a novel. From there, she has published three other stories, one of which is a prequel novella to “The Undine’s Tear.”
“The Water Boy”, Winter’s prequel story, was released earlier this year.
“It is crazy to me, that I have released two books in one year,” Winters said.
Working as an author was never the path she set out on. In fact, Winters says she had originally intended to be a songwriter when the urge to write this book came to her.
However, she says her work as a songwriter has taught her how to tell a story.
“You have to be able to tell a full story in only three minutes, I think that skill helped me with this writing.”
That is something she hopes to impart on her readers, that a skill learned is not a skill wasted.
Because her path led in a different direction than she expected, she picked up many new and different skills that she is able to use each and every day.
“One thing I think I want my readers, and teens in general to know, is you don’t have to have it all figured out right away,” she said.
Winters will impart her wisdom to teens in Sylvan Lake on May 17, when she launches her latest book at the Sylvan Lake library.
The book launch at the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library will be in the afternoon during the “teen takeover” program.
She said it was the perfect set up for her, as she really wanted her book to fit with that audience.
“I was worried for a little while that it wouldn’t be suitable for young adults, there is some dark material in this book, but I really wanted it for that audience and I worked to make it work,” she said.
“The Undine’s Tear” is available for purchase now online and will be available at the Red Deer Chapters as of May 18.