Wren's World

There are several stories taking place in this world, all middle grade or YA. First are the four Wren books-- Wren to the Rescue, Wren's Quest, Wren's War and Wren Journeymage.

Then there are three stand-alone novels, a middle-grade fantasy adventure called Barefoot Pirate, and two young adult romantic fantasies, A Posse of Princesses, and Lhind the Thief. They can be found at Book View Cafe, or click my bibliography page up at the top.

Here is the map for A Posse of Princesses.

Explanation about Wren's World

A few people have asked whether or not the Wren books and Crown/Court Duel take place on the same world. The answer is typical for me: no, yes, um.

The Crown Duel story, which I wrote in my early twenties, is part of the S-d mega-arc. When my agent liked it, only the Wren books had been published, so I changed some of the outlying details to make it seem to belong to Wren's world. The Firebird and the e-book editions, with the two parts back together, and the Flauvic scene restored, are back where they should be, on S-D. (The e-book also has Vidanric scenes added.)

Here's the long version, which includes the history of Wren's world.

When I was seventeen, a friend said to me, "I wish all the heroines weren't blond with blue eyes." So I told another friend that I was going to write about a brown skinned, brown haired, brown eyed heroine, but that friend got quite angry, saying that I ought not dare to write about minorities as I was a WASP and didn't know how minorities suffered. (We were in high school at the time, remember.) I got the idea for Wren, and blithely began writing it—and I found my way between the wishes of the two friends.

The first line was: "The phone rang." The title, which I thought so cool at age seventeen, was Tess's Mess. I decided I would make a world, not discover one, like S-d. It would be fun, and it also would not break the "rules" I perceived in children's literature at the time. I also wouldn't commit the error of presuming to write about a minority; I might mention Wren's brown skin, but she would have blue eyes, and the brown and blond striped hair, so she'd be in between.

See, in those days, you didn't have fantasy stories for kids in which kids from this world could go Over There and stay. They always had to come back, grow up, etc. Or, the ending I loathed with intense passion, they were enchanted to forget all their wonderful adventures, or to think "it was all just a dream."

To get around that, I got rid of the Earth part of the story and Wren was an orphan. For the world, I made a Sartorias-deles lite: kept the mage council, the Twelve Towers guild for gathering and disseminating books and knowledge, and changed one of the indigenous races to the Iyon Dayin.

When I write an S-d story, it "feels" like I'm a watcher at the window. I can't change anything that happened any more than I can willfully make myself younger or change our bank account from debt into wealth. It just is, and all I can change is how I write about the events. I wanted to try my hand at a world where I could change things, and the story wouldn't all fall to pieces. S-d is a complicaed crystal structure I am still trying to understand. Wren's world was meant to be like building Legos.

Sooo anyway, I sent Wren out, it almost sold, thank goodness it didn't, I put it away, tried it again in my mid-thirties. Jane Yolen bought Wren, taught me how to revise, and took out the brown skin, saying it didn't really belong. That was 1990. The stripey hair stayed.

When Firebird bought Crown Duel I restored the story to S-d. Wren Journeymage is currently an e-book only, though it will soon be an audio book, and I'm working on POD. The first three have been polished updated for e-book, including the brown skin quietly restored. They, too, are being recorded for audio. The old print editions are still around.