Fable Thatcher Interview

Chatterbox: Crowd Sorcery

Fable Thatcher Interview

Fable Thatcher Interview

Hello, Crowd-Sorcerers, Chatterboxers, and all friends of Cricket! This is a really exciting time here at Crowd-Sorcery Central! All summer long, you have been creating characters, dreaming up fantasy words and settings, and thinking a lot about how stories are made. It’s been thrilling to watch your work coming in!

As I said today on one of the threads, what we have here on Crowd-Sorcery is a tremendous treasure pile. You know the mountains of gold, silver, and jewels that dragons guard? Well, our treasure here is more wondrous than those, because ours is made up of characters and ideas, any of which could be in a fantastic tale. We’re using just a very few in our official story, but the rest are all still there, waiting to be used. We have here a storehouse of infinite adventures! 

I know it’s the hope of us all—the editors, administrators, designers, our illustrator and me—that many of you will use items and characters posted here to write stories of your own. I think there will be contests coming up in Cricket that invite you to do just that. But you can always do it on your own, too. Write your fantasy tales, illustrate them, bind them in covers if you want, and share them with family, friends, teachers, and classmates. Writing is a joy: you get to make something real out of invisible things—notions, feelings, words . . . you get to shape your own story, told just the way you want it told, and leave it behind for others to experience. Isn’t that exciting? By writing, you can create something that makes the world better!

Anyway, I wanted to give you an update on the unfolding story. It’s being written now! It’s about two-thirds finished, and it will appear in at least four issues of Cricket. I’ve gotten to see artist Emily Fiegenschuh’s first images of what the three major characters look like—soon, you will, too! They look amazing!

As the characters wait here between scenes, our Heroine, Fable Thatcher, has agreed to be interviewed!

In the interview that follows, “CS” is the interviewer, Crowd-Sorcery; “FT” is Fable Thatcher, the Heroine.


CS: I know you can’t give away what happens, Fable, but can you tell us what’s been the scariest moment you’ve had in the story so far?

FT: Well, I’ve almost died twice!

CS: We’re glad you’re alive! What you write becomes true. Isn’t that an incredibly amazing power to have?

FT: It’s a terrible power! I wish I could get rid of it! The second time I almost died?—it was because of my power.

CS: Do you have a plan for defeating Khaos?

FT: No. Not yet. A few weeks ago, I’d never heard of him. Now he’s turned my life upside down. Luminè knows more about him than I do. She heard about him from her father, who was some kind of book collector, only more than that. I don’t know. It’s complicated.

CS: What is Luminè like?

FT: She’s . . . mysterious. Not like anyone I’ve ever met, and I’ve known some really unusual people. Her first name is hard to say, so she wants me to call her Luminè, which I guess is her last name. When she talks to me, she’s honest. She’ll say things I don’t expect. I can tell she’s smart and can do a lot. I’m really thankful she’s on my side. Oh, and she’s pretty funny when she wants to be.

CS: Well, there’s more we’d like to ask, but they want you over there in the story.

FT: Yeah, I have to go. Wish me well, okay?

CS: We wish you the best, Fable. Don’t be afraid. Be true to yourself and your gift. You’ll be fine! All your fans are behind you!

FT: Thank you.

CS: Thank you.


And there you have it! The adventure begins in the November issue of Cricket. In the meantime, if you have questions for any of the characters, post them here. Fable, Luminè, and the others can’t give spoilers, but they may be able to answer some of your questions on their breaks between scenes.


submitted by Fred Durbin, Pennsylvania
(September 17, 2014 - 9:34 am)

What? No interview for me? The fools. I have HOURS of time on my hands. It wouldn't hurt to ask.


You may be next, Khaos. Hold your horses.


submitted by Khaos
(September 17, 2014 - 2:42 pm)

Cool ! What other sort of extras will go up here ?

submitted by Indigo K.
(September 17, 2014 - 7:31 pm)

Hi, Khaos and Indigo!

Indigo, we have various ideas . . . Do you have any suggestions for extras? :-) Right now, the floor is open to anyone who might have a question or two for any of the characters in the story (or for me, the writer -- that would be fine, too)! I can't promise that we'll tell you all you want to know, but I can promise that we'll pay attention and give you some kind of answer!

Mainly, this thread is a place for us all to hang out and talk as we await the beginning of the story in the November issue! Sound good? 

submitted by Fred D., Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
(September 17, 2014 - 10:05 pm)

Awesome! I've really been looking forward to this issue, and can't wait to read the story! Crowd Sorcery has been really fun for me, and it's so awesome that the readers get to play a part in the writing!

I have a question for Frederic Durbin. Do you have a plan to defete Khaos? Or do you prefer to write the story as it goes rather than planning all the details? 

submitted by True
(September 18, 2014 - 5:16 pm)

True, I agree! Crowd-Sorcery has been really fun! The Cricket editors had a fantastic idea in doing this, letting readers play a part in the writing!

And that is an excellent question! I have a very vague plan for defeating Khaos, but it's not nearly developed fully yet--and I've written more than half the story! Yes: I can never plan a story too carefully in advance. I have a rough idea, but I need to let the story develop itself in the writing. I need the story to tell me how it will go. When I'm writing, if things happen that surprise me, it's a good indication that I'm doing it right. If I try to plan it all out ahead of time, it feels stale and lifeless. My belief is that the story knows what it needs. A writer has to listen to the characters and let them breathe! 

submitted by Fred D., Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
(September 18, 2014 - 7:53 pm)

I love this interview! And Fred, the way you talked about writing was so beautiful. I think I'm going to have to keep that in my collection of quotes. :)

I'm so excited to see how the story ends up! How long will it be?

Fred and Emily, thank you so much for all of your hard work! Crowd Sorcery has been a blast and it is so cool to see my character really come to life!

I think it's really cool that all of these people from all over came together and even though we don't know each other personally, we were all able to create this amazing story and all of these amazing ideas. I really applaud Cricket, Fred and Emily, and whoever else that was a part of this project. You are inspiring people world wide to go out there and write!

So Cricket, thank you. For everything. You are and will be one of my favorite magazines of all time.

-Madeline T. 

submitted by Madeline T., age 13
(September 21, 2014 - 10:51 am)

I love this quote! :) 

submitted by Madeline T., age 13
(September 21, 2014 - 10:56 am)

Hi, Madeline!

Wow! I am so honored that you made a "meme" poster out of my quote! I also write down good quotes about writing. I keep them in little notebooks. I've been collecting them for years!

I agree with everything you said about how much fun Crowd-Sorcery is, and how amazing, in the way that it has drawn people from all over together in one project. It really is exciting to focus your efforts with many others on a common goal, especially something creative!

I've always loved Cricket, too! I remember when I was in first grade, back in the year 1973, and my mom got me a subscription to a brand-new magazine that was just starting up . . . called "Cricket." I fell in love with it from that long-ago issue, Volume I Number 1. I have every issue of Cricket since then. They fill an entire cabinet and several big boxes! The only problem is, I don't have them all in the same place yet. Some of them are in Illinois, where I grew up, and some are in Pennsylvania, where I live now. But I hope I can get them all together before long. Through my life so far, I've lived in different countries; I've seen many changes; but Cricket has been one steady, comforting constant in my life. I can always count on every issue to take me into fascinating worlds, both imaginary and historical. And everybuggy is now an old, old friend!

As for how long our Crowd-Sorcery story will be, I'm not sure yet. I had proposed to do it in three parts. But as I began writing Part 1 and especially Part 2, I realized it would have to be a little bigger. The editors have been very gracious in agreeing to a longer story than I'd first proposed. (It's a big deal to make such a change in plans, because editors have to plan each issue carefully a long time in advance. They have to arrange for illustrations and figure out what will go on each page, so that everything fits in.)

Anyway, I'm really enjoying the development of this story. It's a delight to work with such great characters and ideas from you all. You've done a significant part of the writing labor for me! It's fun seeing how the three major characters from three different authors settle into the same story!


submitted by Fred D., Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
(September 21, 2014 - 4:01 pm)

This is really fun. I'm looking forward to see if there are interviews with Khaos and Lumine! (Sorry, my computer can't do the cool accents).

That would be awesome if Cricket has a story contest for our unchosen Crowd Sorcery characters. My heroine, Rilla, who was almost picked, is tapping her foot impatiently in the back of my mind, waiting for her story to be written out.

@ Fred Durbin:

I love your quotes about characters and writing ideas being a Dragon horde--maybe I'll take a leaf out of Madeline's book and make a meme poster with it--with Smaug and his pile of gold in the background!

submitted by Everinne, age 15, Writing
(September 24, 2014 - 12:53 pm)

Hi, Everinne!

Thanks for this letter! I think there's a strong possibility that there could be interviews with Khaos and Lumine, especially if readers like you are interested and remind us! What questions would you ask them if you were interviewing them? (My computer can't get accent marks into these comment boxes, either!)

Rilla is a great character! She really does need to be in a story of her own! I hope Cricket will have such a contest!

Thanks for your kind words about my thoughts on writing! I don't know how you do those meme posters, but I really like them!


submitted by Fred D., Pennsylvania
(September 24, 2014 - 5:28 pm)

Go for it, Everinne! :D

submitted by Madeline, age 13
(September 26, 2014 - 8:13 pm)

How do you pronounce yor name, Luminè?  (My computer cant't do accents here, either, so I copy-pasted from the post with the interview.)

submitted by Bounty, age 12
(September 25, 2014 - 10:45 am)

Hi, Bounty! My first name, Araceli (which means "sky altar"), is pronounced "ah-rah-seh-lee," but the trick is to pronounce it very lightly and gracefully, with equal emphasis on all the syllables. You have to flip the tip of your tongue upward to cut off the air flow for the briefest instant on the "rah"--it sounds almost like you're saying "dah," but really lightly and quickly. No syllable is long at all. In addition to all that, the tone or pitch of your voice should be a little lower on the "ah," and then go up slightly and stay even for the rest, "-rah-seh-lee." Almost no one can do it right, which is why I tell people to call me by my last name, Lumine.

Lumine is pronounced "loo-mih-ney," with a slightly stronger accent on the "loo." It's the same rounded sound as in "blue" or "moo." See, that's easier, isn't it? The first time I heard Fable Thatcher try to say "Araceli," it made me wince. [I put that accent mark over the "ne" so that people will know it isn't "loo-mine."]

Thanks for asking!


submitted by Fred D., Pennsylvania
(September 25, 2014 - 2:56 pm)

Khaos, how are you doing on the tracking Fable down buisness? And where is your shrine?

submitted by A Random Sorcerer
(September 26, 2014 - 7:12 am)

Khaos usually refuses to speak to mortals unless it suits his purposes, so it may be a challenge getting him to agree to an interview. But I (Fred) can update you a little, Random Sorcerer, on what I've seen Khaos doing as the story goes into production.

I know that Khaos is greatly feared in Fable's world--at least by those who know of his existence. His lair is in the terrible Cavern of Koth, which is not easy to reach. But Khaos ventures out from it often, walking among humankind in various forms.

For years, he has hunted for Fable. His spies have searched, broadening his reach. Now, in recent months, he has heard rumors that have his full attention riveted upon a certain place. Khaos has reason to believe that the legends and prophecies are true: that there IS a girl who can write the future. A great company of dark-cloaked riders is on the move, and by all reports--which have reached me through the eyes and ears of forest creatures--Khaos is with the riders. They are heading straight for where Fable lives. She's going to need her special abilities and all her wits when the shadowy army arrives!


submitted by Fred D., Pennsylvania
(September 26, 2014 - 2:12 pm)