Leaving MistasiaThis summer marks the end of a long and extremely fulfilling journey in my life. It marks the completion of the Land of Mistasia, at least in new stories as I will be moving on to the Gossamer Pen. Mistasia has been a part of my life nearly as long as my youngest daughter, 8 years this summer (2014). When Mistasia Novellas became available on Tuesday, I put my final mark on a place that has become very dear to my heart.
The Land of Mistasia has had a profound effect on me and my family.
The name itself has roots in the Purrett family, as do so many of the characters and places within Mistasia. Just the other day, I found myself explain the meaning of the word Mistasia and its origin. It is actually a running joke between myself and my wife. When we originally meet in the summer of 1997, I went to her apartment for the first time. While she was showing off her place I made a reference to the size of her bed (a queen size, which was enormous to a college kid still sleeping in the only bed he ever had...half of a bunk-bed I shared with my little brother). I called it "Mistasia", referring to my wife's name, Misty, and the fact it was a big as the continent, Asia...and the name was born. Silly, but it has become something that we in the Purrett family find humorous.
That is just one of the many personal references that have etched their way into my first novels. As I mentioned before, many characters and places are named for things that have been a part of my life. For example, I have worked for the same retail company nearly all of the past twenty years, so naturally some of the street names where those buildings were located are present;
Harper - the last name of my first character developed for these stories.
Cadieux - the castle title and last name of all regal characters in Mistasia.
Both are streets in Michigan where I worked in the past.
Even the city where Phillip, Whizzy & Rachel live has actual roots in my life, Greenville. It is a city in Michigan, where I actually have never been, however, the name itself has a story that my wife and I have shared with our children many times. During a trip back to Mount Pleasant, we stopped off the highway and in the parking lot met one of the oddest couples we have ever encountered. A man exited the car beside us and approached our vehicle wearing a fanny pack, holding a map outstretched in his hands and screaming "GREENVILLE" repeatedly. His wife started screaming with a frighteningly high-pitched shrill, through the open passenger window attempting to explain her husbands ranting. It was an alarming event...I am laughing right now thinking about it.
In 2007, the Land of Mistasia had become a reality for me. I started telling bedtime stories to my daughter, Lea. It continued to develop from there into what I eventually released as my first independent novel, Land of Mistsia in 2011. Although, Lea was my intended audience at first, her younger sister, Kyra, has become the aficionado in all things Mistasia. It means so much to know the impact these stories have had on the both of them, especially their futures. Lea has taken an interest in writing, both poetry and stories. Kyra has developed into an amazing artist, who writes her own comics.
Mistasia has been a way for me to put parts of my life down to remember forever, even if these references were moments for me and those closest to me...it keeps those memories alive forever. I will cherish these stories as long as I live, and sincerely hope that you all will as well.
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Copyright 2014: Christopher M. Purrett