What if our destinies are given to us in clues along the way? Mine was. My mother kept a verdigris green bust of Queen Nefertiti upon our mantle. I would trace her face and her elongated blue crown with my finger. Then when I was ten years-old our class took a field trip to a local Egyptian museum and I discovered a colossal statue of Pharaoh Akhenaten, who happened to be Nefertiti’s consort. This odd shaped king of the 18th dynasty was written out of history, and deemed a ‘heretic’ for introducing a revolutionary form of peaceful worship during a dark reign of terror. I vowed to write the truth. It wasn’t until 2005, after my first trip to Egypt, that I began to write Shadow of the Sun.
In 2007, I returned to Egypt and had the opportunity to be led by tour guide, Egyptologist and Egyptian wisdom keeper Abd’El Hakim Awyan whose ‘living African Oral Tradition’ goes back for centuries. Although I am finishing my Egyptology degree with the University of Manchester, Hakim’s teachings were very right brain. Hakim believed that one must experience the esoteric wisdom of Egypt in order to understand it.
Merit-Aten was the first-born daughter of Queen Nefertiti and Pharaoh Akhenaten, and I chose to write this first person story though her eyes. Although first person point-of-view isn’t typical for a historical novel, this isn’t a traditional story. My intention was to introduce some of the true complex Egyptian concepts, and I felt it would be easier to understand them through the eyes of a child. This coming-of-age story begins with Merit-Aten’s birth at a birthing house in Denderah. The Egyptians didn’t believe in birth, or death, instead they related these concepts to the sun. The sun rises in the East, so easting is the idea for birth and because the sun sets in the west, then westing meant death. Ritual and a deep reverence for worship were essential to this ancient civilization. Merit-Aten has paranormal abilities such as being able to speak to animals and see auras around everyone.
If you have seen the pictures of the royal Amarna family with the elongated heads, Merit-Aten was born with extraordinary intelligence. This meant she struggled to make friends her age as she journeyed with her classmates through the perilous path of an Egyptian Mystery School. The beautiful and pragmatic Nefertiti, the dreamy Akhenaten and the willful Merit-Aten clash about how this royal lineage will survive. Nefertiti believes a Royal Daughter’s duty is to bear children. Pharaoh Akhenaten wishes his daughter to remain chaste as a Temple initiate while Merit-Aten must chose her own path without tearing her family apart.
I made a general outline for the book, but the characters really tell their story of jealousy, lies, betrayal, murder and magic. It is a tale about how chaos must ensue in order to establish peace, and how one royal little girl must figure out how to find the power to save her family. It took me seven years to write Shadow of the Sun and it is the first book of five in The Shadow Saga. I became so passionate about writing that I wrote at all times of the day and night. The hardest part was editing and tightening up scenes, and believe me, I left many great pieces out. I came from Hollywood and worked at a television show for eight years, so learning to edit is essential. Every word counts in a book. You don’t ever want to lose your reader.
Author, Speaker, Healer and Metahistorian-Merrie P. Wycoff is finishing her Egyptology degree through The University of Manchester, and has a Masters in Metaphysics, and a Ph.D. in Comparative Religion. Merrie P. Wycoff loves her biodynamic garden and Dressage on her horse farm. Her published works include: w Shadow of the Sun (Rosa Mystica Publishing, 2012, Born in Orgasmic Bliss: Turn your Contractions into Expansions (Rosa Mystica Publishing 2012, and Work like an Egyptian: Unlock your Inner Pharaoh (Rosa Mystica Publishing 2013) Merrie P. Wycoff was a Lead Segment Producer for Entertainment Tonight and President of a Direct Response Company.
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