Backstory and characters: S’ian and Kett

I was asked recently (while sitting in a very green, very sunny field someplace in the middle of Wales) about S’ian and Kett’s backstory. My beloved friend, who has read Green Sky & Sparks and Grey Stone & Steel in proof format, wanted to know more about them; she pointed out that knowing more of S’ian’s history would make you feel for her, make you understand why she feels as she does about the situation she’s pushed into.

The slight issue is that I didn’t really know much of S’ian’s backstory. I didn’t know how she met Kett. I know their life before the story starts was a happy one, but I didn’t have details in my head.

I love being handed that sort of challenge. I started thinking.

The story’s going to be incredibly bittersweet (if you don’t know why, I suggest you read Green Sky & Sparks) and I think I now have an outline in my head. S’ian grew up in the deserts of Orei, in a land of burning heat and freezing wasteland. She became a Healer at some point in her life, enjoying her training and taking pride in her talent. She moved to the city, met people, became the confident young woman that I know her to be just before Green Sky starts. She had a life with her lover; a life that was happy and sad and full of a joy that is going to make me cry as I write it.

I don’t want to write this story. And yet I think that’s the best kind of story that I can write.

Author: kate

Kate Coe is an editor, book reviewer and writer of fiction & fantasy. She writes the sparkpunk GreenSky series and blogs at When she's not working, she fills her spare time in between writing with web design, gaming, geeky cross-stitch and DIY (which may or may not involve destroying things). She also reads far fewer books that she would like to, but possibly more than she really has time for.