How did you come up with the concept and characters for the book?
I’ve already discussed the fact that a lot of the characters are based upon characters played by friends in my D&D gaming sessions. The other characters… at least a good number… are generated based upon the situation I write myself into (for example - a ocean voyage is involved, so I created a captain, her first officer, other officers and crewmen). I also create storylines as the book evolves. Essentially I know how to get to point A and point B, but I’m never sure of the route I’ll be taking. That changes every time I get behind the computer screen. It’s how I write… and sometimes the additional storylines require new characters (some of which become important depending upon the importance of the storyline). My wife calls it “chasing rabbits”. I call it genius. 😊
Where did you come up with the names in the story?
As I previously mentioned, most of the main characters were actually named by the D&D players who played them in my games. As for all the others, some were just random names I thought up. However, as I got further along in the books, I realized I needed a better way to distinguish races… including names. For most of the elves, I used several elf name generators found on the internet in the public domain. The sailors are based upon the British, the Draugan Pesta are based upon the Russians, the dark elves are based upon the Chinese, dwarves are based upon the Scots, etc. Once I’ve determined the real-world nationality, naming the characters is nothing more then selection.
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
I think the most enjoyment I get out of writing is the exploration of new thoughts and ideas and, if I like them, the incorporation of those ideas into the storyline. I’m a fly-by-my-pants type of writer. Many times when I get behind the keyboard, I have no specific idea just where my writings are going to take me. Developing day-to-day ideas and successfully integrating them into the story gives me a great deal of satisfaction and pleasure.
Tell us about your main characters- what makes them tick?
Pretty much discussed this above.
How did you come up with the title of your first novel?
In my world, the last empath also represents the ultimate innocence. Specifically, Emmy is the innocence the world needs to survive, but there are forces that wish to destroy her. The first book tells the story of her rescue, the second of the fight to keep her safe, and the third shows, in some respects, her transformation into a powerful force in her own right that no longer requires protection. Her innocence is lost as a result of her growth. Considering this, the titles came easily.
Who designed your book covers?
Book Cover Designer
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Speaking about my first book, The Salvation of Innocence, I would have edited it better. Now that I have two additional books under my belt, I can see areas that I would probably remove. I also didn’t use contractions as much as I should have.
Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
When I first started out, it was more of a test to see if I could do it. My real motivation was to prove to myself, and everyone I know who believed I’d be a decent author, that I could do it. As I wrote the first book, I realized I had more in me then just a one and done. As I wrote the second book, I came to understand that I enjoy writing. It isn’t a chore. But it is hard work.
If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
I’m not a huge moviegoer, so I’m not overly familiar with all the stars and starlets that might be available. I don’t really have a preference.
Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
First, you have to understand my works are fantasy. I’m a sixty-five-year-old man who’s spent decades reading fantasy and playing Dungeons and Dragons. In a fantasy world, all kinds of possibilities exist. Magic is commonplace and creatures exist that defies rational thought. Ghosts, demons, dragons, elves, dwarves, an intelligent boulder, and other creatures taken from the depths of my imagination are standard fare. My world has good and evil (not unusual)… but good can turn evil and vice versa. It also offers travel through space and time to different worlds and realities. In other words, be prepared to allow you imagination to roam free. Keep an open mind and don’t be afraid to accept the impossible.