Most 12-year-olds will spend their summer holidays doing summer holiday stuff – long days at the beach, spending time with friends, perhaps taking a family trip.
Then there’s Aurora Indyana.
She’ll be spending at least part of her summer between Grade 7 and Grade 8 promoting her debut novel, Wayward Fox.
“It’s a chapter book. There are 52 chapters, including the prologue and the epilogue,” said Aurora. “It’s just over 60,000 words.
“It’s about these three foxes who are siblings, who go out and try to find themselves in what they call the wide world. When they return, they come back… kind of like ‘whole.’ They’ve had their adventure, know who they are, and can enjoy their home.”
The personal growth story, while fiction, does have somewhat of a personal connection to Aurora.
“The three foxes are all siblings and I kind of view the three of them as different points of my relationship with my brother,” she said. “So that was perhaps the inspiration for the characters, but there really isn’t anything (biographical) about it.”
The book has been a long time in the making. Aurora has been working on it for three years.
“The writing process only took about one-and-a-half years. The editing process took the rest,” she said. “My grandma helped a ton wth that. She read it, like, 30 times, and kept pointing out all these little problems. I was editing the story, while she was editing the grammar, so we worked together on it, for one-and-a-half years.”
Aurora said her desire to delve into novel writing came as a result of her reading.
“I was obsessed with a (novel) series called Warrior Cats when I was about nine,” she said. “So I wanted to write some fanfiction for Warrior Cats, which I did. But I didn’t finish it, I didn’t really like it, and so I tried again. Eventually I thought, ‘how about, no,’ and I came up with something on my own, something that wasn’t Warrior Cat related. That’s how it started.”
Aurora said she already knows what she wants to do with her life.
“I really want to be an author – that would be cool,” she said. “If that could pay the bills, that is definitely what I want to do.”
Aurora will have a book signing at the Downtown Courtenay Market Day, July 16, at the Laughing Oyster Bookshop.