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The Skeleton Key Hype Week: The Story I'm Telling

The Story I'm Telling

In light of the upcoming release of The Skeleton Key, I wanted to share a story.

The Skeleton Key was originally meant to be a standalone novel. It started with Jacklyn Madison, a girl with a tragic past, who returned to this place she’d once been a part of and found her way through the trauma she had once run from. And it ended… well, it ended the same way. I can’t tell you, because spoilers.

When I actually sat down to write it, I realized that, when establishing Jacklyn’s tragic past, it was simply too much. I had imagined this rich world with these incredible characters, and their story didn’t make sense if I started where I planned. It wouldn’t have nearly the same impact, and it would feel rushed and wrong in one book.

From there, The Order of the Key was born. I told that story with this story in mind, because this has always been my plan for the series. And it was meant to be a duology.

And then I realized I had three books. The Keys of the Dawn, Book 3 of Keys & Guardians is still in the outlining phases at press time, but it is happening. There was so much more story to tell. I wasn’t ready to give up on my favorites yet.

But I think it’s important to discuss what story I was trying to tell when I first picked up my pen during my day shift managing a video store with no customers, all those years ago.

The Skeleton Key is about going back to your trauma and facing it head on. It’s about facing your past suffering and accepting that it may weaken you on the way to finding your strength. It’s about screwing up, and how bad choices don’t make bad people. And it’s about redemption. It’s about finding stability in a found family, whatever form that may take. And it’s about the risks you must take to protect yourself and your people.

I’m truly proud of both books in this series, but The Skeleton Key is extra close to my heart. I can’t wait for you all to dive in. I hope you all love it.

Keep an eye out for more of Skeleton Key related content this week and tune in to Instagram Live next week for some release day shenanigans with authors Justine Manzano & Kristin Jacques

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