Happy Thursday and welcome to my interview with Paul C. Williams, author of THE SHADOW OF HADES! I’m so excited to share my interview with you today, plus more information about the book and author!
The Shadow of Hades by Paul C. Williams
Published by Amazon/Self published on October 20, 2020
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal
In the newest paranormal fantasy novel by Paul C. Williams, souls are dragged from the afterlife and placed into the form of a young boy. A community must battle the dark powers in the surrounding magical forest where death itself is torn apart, and the fabric of the universe comes undone. Within The Shadow of Hades, four stories will combine to answer the question: “How far will we go to vanquish our personal demons?”
If you could trade lives with any book character for a day, who would it be and why? What about a week? A month, year, or forever?
I haven’t thought much about this, strangely. Short term I would choose someone from an adventure story, like Percy Jackson. Just for a taste of the magical quests, and to see the myths come to life.
For the long term, being a month to forever, I would trade with someone with a story that’s calmer. I don’t have anyone specific in mind, but I would pick someone from a romance novel, that seems like a manageable life.
What would you do if you spent the day with Aella, Blake, Carlos, and Pamela? Where would you go to eat, hang out, relax, etc.?
That would be an interesting day for sure. I think I’d take them to one of Pamela’s concerts. Aella could loosen up and dance, Carlos would have a blast being out so late, and Blake could study everyone from a distance. I would also be very eager to hear Pam play in real life!
Before that, Aella could take them to the richer part of town and show them all of the fanciest spots to eat, and explore. They would all be a little closed off, but I think as they day goes on they would enjoy themselves.
If Aella, Blake, Carlos, and Pamela were to hang out with characters from other books, who would they be and why?
Aella would relate a lot to Holly Golightly from Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s. They could enjoy a day or so of hanging around. I think Holly, even though she’s young in the novella, would remind Aella to just search for fun in her life, instead of resigning herself to boredom for security.
Blake and Frankenstein’s monster have a lot in common, they could talk about what the meaning of life could be, although they’d come to different conclusions. Their similar experiences, and unique existence would form a very tight bond.
Carlos and Huckleberry Finn definitely have a similar spirit. Although the time period difference would play a big role. Without that, if Huck was a modern day character I can see them getting into all kinds of mischief.
I see Pam in the world of Scott Pilgrim, the graphic novel series. It’s totally her scene, she’d probably quickly befriend Ramona Flowers, and enjoy taunting Scott as he tried to win her over.
What was your favorite bit of research you ended up not using?
I did a lot of research on top of my prior knowledge of the practice of Wicca, and old folklore. There’s a lot of little references in the names of places, and word choices I left for readers who know. *wink*
As far as what I didn’t use, there’s a few lost pages of notes on the lore about demons and psychology that I was tying together to make the ‘character’ of Hades. Tons of stuff that formed the earlier plot was lost, and I had to reinvent it from what I could remember. There was a lot of interesting stuff about demons and mirrors, and human psychology that would have formed specific aspects of Hades. A little nod to psychology that I managed to remember is the name of two aspects of Death/Hades that appear in the book: Olive and Oliver. They were named after a neurologist Oliver Sacks, who spoke on the functions of the left and right brain. (Although I interpreted this very loosely).
What is your favorite quote, scene, or moment from THE SHADOW OF HADES?
There are plenty of lines I love from the book. I surprise myself with the language I use, and how well it all rolls together, there’s no way I can choose a favorite line! One example though might be:
“It shone like a star on earth, with a nuclear fever”
But in terms of scenes, I do have a favorite, though I’m afraid it’s a spoiler! Let’s just say it’s a point somewhat early in the story where a character’s long held secret takes flight.
Were there alternate endings you considered, or did you always know where the story was headed?
There’s an alternate route that absolutely haunted me as I was editing, and I debated changing the story for a while, but ended up keeping it as I had planned. It was one of those times the characters hint at other directions.
I was almost ready to switch Aella’s and Pam’s fates. Their story lines only meet directly at the very end, and I saw how much sense it would make in the plot for their experiences to be altered. However, I stuck to my original outline, which I am still content with. A little secret is that I very much intended for Pamela to be a villain of the story. Just a straight up evil character, but after her very first chapter I knew I had too much compassion for her to go down the route I had envisioned, although her ending remained the same which was tragic, and It might be silly, but I do feel guilty for what became of her and the band, Onyx.
An LGBTQ, Black-Hispanic teen with an eclectic taste in music, Paul Williams has struggled with his identity, eventually leading to mental illness. However, with support from his siblings, he gained new confidence to express his inner emotions through art and writing. At age seventeen, he published his first book. In 2018, along with his friend, Icesis Street, Paul won the technology Student Association (TSA) 1st place State award for Children’s storybooks. He is now working endlessly to carve a place for himself among the creative professionals and pave the way for other talented ‘students’ of art and literature.
In his newest book, Shadow of Hades, Williams reveals themes of grief, often what we commonly associate with death. He hopes readers are moved to examine their lives on a smaller scale, feel invited to empathize with all aspects of the world and see the magical playground that is our shared universe. The world seemed uniquely grim at the time Williams wrote Shadow of Hades, and that darkness is nuanced in the characters, however, he still provides a glimmer of hope to the readers for a world that desperately needs it and that we should all keep close to our hearts.
Have you added this book to your tbr yet? Let me know in the comments and have a splendiferous day!