Ceril N Domace is an accountant, the owner of a grumpy senior collie mix, and the author of Haven, a fantasy novel her twin sister says “isn’t bad.”
As a lover of fiction works great and small, Ceril has been reading age-inappropriate fiction since her father failed to pull The Silmarillion from her grubby little fingers at age five. As a grown-up accountant, her spreadsheet compiling gives her plenty of time to make plans for a fantastic world that isn’t plagued by balance sheets . . . and also has dragons.
On the rare occasions she manages to free herself from an ever-growing and complex web of TTRPG, Ceril enjoys taking walks and griping that all her hobbies are work in disguise.
CONNECT WITH CERIL
Welcome to SPFM, Ceril! Since we already have your bio, describe yourself in three words.
Creative, Friendly, adventurous
Summarize your book, Haven, using one gif.
If you could recommend three self-published books, which would you choose and why?
Once Stolen by D.N. Bryn because of the absolutely amazing worldbuilding.
There’s Magic Between Us by Jillian Maria because it’s so sweet.
A Cat’s Guide to Bonding with Dragons by Chris Behrsin because it makes me laugh.
What is your favorite part, and your least favorite part of self-publishing?
My favorite part of self-publishing is being able to control the entire process. I get to decide the cover and the blurb and how I’d like it marketed. It’s so wonderful to have that level of connection with my project.
My least favorite part is that everything is down to me. I have to get the copyright filed, I have to set up the marketing, I have to make sure my files are uploaded correctly. It can get exhausting.
How do you approach worldbuilding?
I approach worldbuilding from a logistics standpoint. If I’m going to be turning people into dragons I need to know most of the process and what happens to them afterward. How do I clothe them? How do they get materials they can’t produce? How would ordinary people react to this happening? The list goes on and on. It helps me flesh out the tricky bits and when the time comes to write I usually have the things I need already prepared and on hand. And if I don’t, I have a good framework to develop it.
When did you start writing?
When I was four, if I’m being honest. I used to type up gibberish, print it out, and then be very upset Mom wasn’t reading my stories correctly. She might’ve have an easier time if I’d bothered to learn to read or write first, but I wasn’t the type to let that stop me.
In middle school I ran the usual gamut of terrible poetry, songs, and novels abandoned five chapters in. I did have a wonderful writing group at the local library that helped me get a few short stories together, but I never went anywhere with any of those projects.
I started seriously writing in my freshman year of college after I told one of friends about an idea I had. I then, predictably, fell into trying to figure out how to make that ideal feasible in the real world and from there I wrote an entire book when I should’ve been doing my accounting homework.
What’s your writing ritual/routine like?
I’m a night owl, so at 10PM, when my dog is nudging me toward bed, I grab my laptop and get to work. On a work night I’ll usually hammer out 1000 words or so, but on weekends I’ve been known to reach over 5000 in a single night. If my close friends are around, we put on some video game soundtracks and sit in the living room, working on our own projects. Writing parties got me through the tricky bits of the early chapters of Haven.
If you could go back in time, what’s one thing you would tell your younger self?
Make more friends in the online writing community. These people who what they’re talking about and they’re great sounding boards for when you’re stuck. Also, as supportive as our family members are, they really don’t understand what you’re talking about when you rant about character arcs and inverting tropes so that’s another reason to get writing friends.
If you were to write a spin-off about a side character, which would you pick and what would it be about?
Probably Jason Lucien, “shade extraordinaire” as he calls himself. He’s a jokester with a dark past and trauma. I’d love to explore his perspective of the fae war and his time in the fae research facilities. I get to play with him in the later books in my Fae Queen’s Court series and it’s always a treat to have him in a scene.
What is your favorite word, and why?
I love the Welsh word Hiraeth. It doesn’t translate into English very well, but it’s best described as nostalga for a home that doesn’t exist anymore and maybe never did—a longing for how thing used to be and can’t be again.
The word just gives me chills. It’s so bittersweet, looking back to the past but also knowing that you can’t go back, only forward.
Tell us what lies ahead for you.
I’m in my final drafts of the sequel to Haven, which is tentatively called Avalon. I’m also drafting the third book in the series and laying the groundwork for a MG fantasy about a harpy boy and his first solo flight.
About Haven (The Fae Queen’s Court #1)
Most people think the fae are gone. Most people are wrong.
Owen Williams wakes after a horrific car accident to find his wife is dead—and somehow turned into a gryphon—and his kids gone after a home invasion turned horribly wrong. Shattered and reeling, he vows to do whatever it takes to find them.
When a fae scout appears and promises to reunite him with his kids, he doesn’t hesitate before joining her. But she warns him that if he wants to protect his family, he must follow the fae to their city, the hidden haven of Tearmann.
With enemies on the horizon, Owen needs to set aside his fears and take up arms to defend their new home alongside the people he’s always been taught were monsters—or he’ll lose everyone he’s trying to protect.