I remember the exact day I started writing my debut novel, The Hunted One. It was Christmas Break in 2008. At the time I lived in Texas, where I went to Baylor University on an equestrian scholarship. I planned to fly home for the break, but the weather had delayed all the flights. Totally devastated, I drove back to my empty dorm. I was young, 18 years-old, and I just wanted to go home. My parents lived in Tennessee, so I was far from home, home-sick, and in desperate need of a hug. These feelings overwhelmed me until I pulled out an old composition notebook and started writing.
I have no clue where the story came from or why, but out poured this paranoid schizophrenic young woman with a drug problem. Obviously, I am not a paranoid schizophrenic with a drug problem. But I took a sliver of the emotions I felt that day, and I pushed them to the rawest point possible in my story. Weirdly enough, it made me feel better, and I’ve been writing ever since.
Years and many, many rewrites later, The Hunted One was finally realized. My tortured young character grew into the Archangel Michaela (adapted from Michael). I always equate my writing journey to a quote by Michelangelo:
“I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.”
That day in December when I was scared and alone, I had this huge block of rock in front of me with a story waiting inside. Years later, nearly five drafts abandoned, and three completely trashed books, I have finally found my angel.
The Hunted One
By Meg Collett
Releasing January 17, 2014
The Fallen have trespassed into Heaven for the first time in eternity. Prepared for battle, Michaela and her Archangels open Heaven’s gates to confront the Fallen. Only, Michaela’s Archangels—her brothers and sisters in Heaven—betray her. And when the Fallen attack the sanctuary in the skies through the gates Michaela inadvertently left open, the Holy Angels accuse Michaela of planning the invasion.
One simple mistake with a thousand consequences.
Dragged to Earth by an Archangel turned Fallen, Michaela will do anything to return to Heaven and save it. In her fervor, she kills the Archangel—something no angel has ever done before. Wingless, without any hope, Michaela welcomes death when an unlikely human ally, Clark, finds her and convinces her to fight back, because she is the only one left who can. With the help of Clark and Gabriel, an innocent Archangel whose friendship deepens into something far more torrid and unexpected on Earth, Michaela must prove the Holy Angels have their own plan for Heaven, and it is one that may prove to be the End of the Days.
If she fails, she’ll lose Gabriel forever, human souls will be unfairly judged, and Heaven will belong to angels who deserve it least.
If Michaela doesn’t find the courage to continue, Heaven might fall.
It may be too late to save herself, but Michaela is the only one who knows the truth, the only one who can save the Archangels from an eternity of pursuit. Wingless and tainted, if Michaela doesn’t prove the Archangels’ innocence, she may never be able to return to Heaven. But even that may be a hopeless dream.