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Author Spotlight: Laurelle Rond about ‘Pearly Eye’

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laurelle rond author interview pearly eye

Pearly Eye – Laurelle Rond’s first novel in the Rune Trilogy – introduces readers to Selena, a young woman with a mysterious past and a unique condition—a pearly eye that conceals extraordinary abilities.

As Selena embarks on her journey of self-discovery, she confronts her shame and delves into her remarkable power, guided by themes of healing, spirituality, and forgiveness.

Pearly Eye by Laurelle Rond

Q: Congratulations on the upcoming release of Pearly Eye! Can you share what inspired you to write this story and delve into the themes of spirituality and past lives?

There were three main inspirations for writing Pearly Eye. First, the need to recover from violence. Secondly, a lifelong fascination with spirituality. And thirdly, a move to Oxfordshire.

The first made me determined to find deep healing of mind, body and spirit. The second led me to discover the concepts of reincarnation and past lives and all the mind-opening possibilities they contained. The third was the discovery of an archaeological dig in a local village where two Anglo Saxon skeletons had been unearthed and separated from each other.

Outraged, I decided to write a story in which they could be reunited.

Q: Your novel delves into the story of Selena, a young woman with a unique condition and a mysterious past. Can you share more about Selena’s character development and what readers can expect from her journey in the book?

Selena is a strange looking 25-year-old with a pearly eye which makes her seem disabled but in reality has the potential to enable her to see differently.

At the beginning of the novel, she feels ashamed of her apparent abnormality and hides it behind an eyepatch. However, a family tragedy forces her to face herself.

She escapes to Oxfordshire and has no choice but to begin to discover her extraordinary, unique power. 

Q: Your personal journey, including your experiences with trauma and your interest in shamanism, seems to have greatly influenced your writing. How did these life experiences shape the characters and plot of your novel?

Shamanism, the oldest religion in the world, teaches that our soul splits into fragments when we are shocked, traumatised, or parted from someone we truly love. Pearly Eye is, in part, a shamanic journey to wholeness which takes us on Selena’s quest to find her lost soul parts and bring them back home.

Q: The Rune Trilogy sounds fascinating. Can you tell us more about how these symbols influenced the structure of your novels and the storytelling process?

Runes are an ancient alphabet of 25 symbols which formed an early, Nordic/Germanic writing system. I have headed each chapter throughout the trilogy with a different rune.

This not only structures the novels and helps all three coalesce into a trilogy, but it also gives a divinatory flavour to what is about to happen in every part of the story.

Q: You mentioned that your writing process involves exploring the unconscious mind and being surprised by the emerging story. Could you elaborate on your writing routine and how you tap into your creativity during the early hours of the morning?

The Unconscious forms 95% of our mind. Consciousness is like the tip of an iceberg – most of the mind works invisibly underneath the water.

When I write, I dive deeply into my unconscious mind to discover what lies hidden beneath. Think of a piece of driftwood which has emerged from the sea. There are no clues as to how long it has been there or where it originated. Once it has landed in the shore, I take it home and, using the chisel that is my imagination, slowly find the shape inside that wants to be discovered.

As for writing at night, this is when my imagination is at its keenest. As the world disappears, all distractions simply vanish, enabling me to immerse myself completely in the creative experience.

Q: The settings of your novels, from the Lofoten Islands to medieval Oxfordshire, are diverse and atmospheric. How do you approach researching and immersing yourself in these different time periods and locations to make your storytelling vivid and authentic?

I research a little but, to be honest, most of what I create is done from my imagination. As soon as I sit down at the computer, I press a switch in my mind and a vivid film starts to roll. l have no idea where the visions come from, only that they take me to places that seem utterly real, whether they are in the present or the past.

Q: It’s intriguing that your work as a sound therapist and shamanic healer informs your writing. How does your expertise in these areas influence the way you portray spiritual and mystical elements in your novels?

My work as a sound therapist and shamanic healer has given me tools to safely explore my imagination and unconscious mind. Safety is vital. I have no desire to scare myself or anyone else! My intention is rather to pose new possibilities for our complex human journey.

I use the medium of dreams to tell the past life story in a mystical way. The dreams seem real at the time but almost unbelievable in daylight. However, unlike sleep dreams, these do not disappear as soon as they are recalled. Instead, they become even more intense as the timelines start to converge.

Q: The concept of reincarnation and the exploration of past lives are central themes in your trilogy. What message or insight do you hope readers will take away from Selena’s journey between present and past?

My hope is that people will come to understand that, if they are feeling hurt and splintered, it may be because they have left parts of themselves behind in the past. By daring to face themselves and these new possibilities, it is possible to heal and find inner happiness.

As far as history is concerned, it is now thought that time is a man-made illusion. However, we live in a world that thinks in a linear way. When we see that we have met the same people life after life and begun patterns that follow us – karma – into our current lives, we can bring them up into consciousness and finally begin to forge relationships and experiences that are no longer sabotaged by old patterns.

The story is fun, too. Pearly Eye might tackle some deep issues, but it is above all, human, and full of foibles and eccentricities that can be, at times, both charming and light-hearted.

Q: You mentioned that your novel took a long time to reach its final form as you go deep into your writing process. Could you share a memorable moment or discovery during this process that profoundly impacted the story of your novel?

One of the most memorable moments during the writing of Pearly Eye was when my life fell apart for a second time. Within a few months in 2020, my mother died, lockdown ended my 20-year sound therapy business, and my second, 36-year marriage fell apart.

The only thing that kept me together was writing. As the characters in Pearly Eye became my nightly companions and stopped me from falling apart, they enabled me to explore the need for even deeper healing. I might have begun Selena’s story over twenty years before, but it was at that point that I truly understood why I was writing it.

Q: Lastly, every author has a message they hope readers take away. What’s the core message of Pearly Eye that you’d like readers to connect with on a personal level?

Forgiveness is the core message of Pearly Eye and the Rune Trilogy. The patterns of revenge, remorse and hatred from the past run that run  through the present day relationships, make them ultimately untenable.

The only way to shed all the pain and hurt is to bring it all into the present. Only then we can stop blaming each other and take responsibility for what we have created ourselves. By forgiving each other and, most particularly, ourselves, we will finally be able to find our true selves and the unique gifts we have to offer.

And what we perceive as time seems to be the key. As one of the characters says at the end of Pearly Eye, we don’t need to live in the past and the future. The present is a gift. All we have to do is to open that present and allow ourselves to live in the joy of our whole selves.

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Happy reading! ❤️

Jo Jackson

Sunday 19th of November 2023

What a fascinating interview. If Laurelle brings her imagination into her writing then it must be a very good book.