I very nearly didn’t have a blog sorted for you guys this week. The past few days have frankly been very uncomfortable for me health-wise, so it’s likely things will be rather skewed for a little bit. However, I still have these to bring out, so there is that.
One notice; the first contest has now been postponed. Nobody wanted to enter it this time, but that’s fine! People can be very busy, so it’s all good. Therefore, I will put it in place again, with a brand new deadline of Sunday 4th September 2016. That will give you guys hopefully a bit of time to write stuff. From before, here is the image, and the little contest. If I get none this time, I’ll replace the image and keep it going. Just part of the fun!
Nothing too big, but there will be prizes should there is more then one entry (Kind of promotes you guys to at least enter!)
Once it is posted, you’ll have a week to write and submit. You can submit in one of three ways. Either a comment in the blog section, On the Facebook comments, or message me it! As long as I get it.
I will mark them, and you’ll get some form of feedback (Not guaranteed, it’ll depend on my schedule, but I’ll try my hardest to get back to you.)
The prize will be a randomly chosen MOBI from my substantial Ebook collection! I have hundreds now, so I may as well use them to give away to people.
THE CONTEST: All good? Cool. Here is the beginning picture. Using this picture as inspiration, in 1,500 words or less, describe the battle being fought here. Who is fighting? What is the outcome? Show rather then tell, and give some emotional background to the destruction.
And now….*drum-roll* THE MAIN EVENT! Please welcome author David Finn to my panel, author of the Demorn series.
What books have most influenced your life?
Wow, tough question up front! But I have the answers, a top SEVEN off the top of my head.
Dark Knight Returns, by Frank Miller.
An amazing revitalisation of Batman in the 80’s that caught me on every single level and inspired me creatively and spawned my enduring love of comics and Batman.
The Talisman, by Stephen King and Peter Straub.
Every moody 12-15 year old needs a book like this to lose themselves in. I came out of this massive fantasy book feeling like I had awoken from a dream. Awesome.
Devices and Desires, by PD James.
PD James is an amazing mystery writer and I would recommend any of her books. I’m sure she has inspired thousands of writers – she has a fantastic feel for characters and place. Her Adam Dalgliesh series is legendary.
American Gods, by Neil Gaiman.
What more needs to be said? Read this book kids. Watch the show. Enjoy a master at work. Ancient pagan gods in America NOW being AWESOME and TERRIFYING.
The Invisibles, by Grant Morrison.
I’m a long time Grant Morrison fan, and this comic series from the mid to late 90’s is amongst my favourites. Absolute reality bending and transcendental with a strong narrative thread beneath the bizarreness. I love this series.
Conan the Barbarian series, by Robert E Howard.
Probably one of the biggest influences on my own writing style. Conan is a fantastic lead as he slashes and hacks his way through Robert E Howard’s wonderful fantasy world! There’s nothing to say other than go read Robert E Howard!
Ed Brubaker’s complete Catwoman run in the early 2000’s.
It’s probably the best comic book run I’ve ever read collected in three awesome trades. People talk about complex characterisation in serial fiction. Read this series. Funny, sad and powerful. Wonderful expressive art.
2. How do you develop your plots and characters?
When I’m away from my writing desk I use Notes on my phone to break down scenes and just put down cool ideas. I play a lot of them out in my head but I’m all about getting it down in a document. When it comes to serious plot breakdowns I do them, and I work toward the goals in the story as I write – but Im not afraid to go “off script” and let the characters grow and develop – often when they interact in the story. This exact thing happened between Demorn and Alex, a fellow member of the Innocents who wound up staying around for pretty much the rest of the first book after she showed up for a cameo scene in Blade of Exile!
3. Tell us about your current project.
My current project is The Asanti Series, the story of Demorn, an exile of dead world since she was thirteen. Reality has been infected, setting up different Universes and wiping the memories of the population throughout past and present. Demorn’s birthplace, Asanti was destroyed in aftershocks. It’s known as the Fracture Event. She belongs to the Innocents, a Clubhouse of mercenaries and assassins based inside the future city of Babelzon.
On a random mission rescuing a corrupt politician’s daughter Demorn uncovers a terrifying conspiracy of multi-dimensional demon gods hiding in plain sight. Very quickly she must risk everything in a desperate quest for something bigger than a bounty if Babelzon and everything she loves are to be saved.
The series is planned to be seven books and the first two, Demorn: Blade of Exile and Demorn: City of Innocents are out now. The third, Demorn: Soul Fighter will be out later this year. I have the notes to begin the fourth novel in the series and also notes and ideas for an ensemble book set inside the same universe, which will probably be my next project once Demorn: Soul Fighter goes to the printer in a couple of months.
4. Who would you say is the main character of your novels? And tell me a little bit about them!
Demorn is definitely the lead character of my novels so far – although there are quite a few other strong characters in the series. She’s a swordsman and an exile of Asanti. Following the destruction of Asanti, which she escaped with her brother, Demorn is an assassin and sword for hire in the city of Babelzon, and in Blade of Exile Demorn leads a group of thieves and mercenaries called the Innocents.
Demorn has been blessed by the Goddess Alodin Mars. A blazing flaming sword of justice, Xalos, can spawn from her heart. Demorn has the power to travel between dimensions, an ability that was learnt and partially mastered on Asanti as a child. With the barriers between realities breaking down, Demorn has travelled often to the mysterious fantasy dimension of Firethorn, where she is both viewed as a saviour and a savage death-bringer. She comes to them in times of crisis, often without full recollection of her past. They call her the Wandering Princess of the Swords. Demorn herself is a light-hearted, sarcastic personality who loathes the legends that have grown around her. Some years prior to Blade of Exile, she lost the love of her life in Firethorn, and Demorn desperately seeks to resurrect the soul of her girlfriend Kate, which drives much of the personal events in Book One Demorn: Blade of Exile.
5. What advice would you give new writers on how to delve into creative fiction?
My advice is simple – read a lot and write a lot. Don’t be afraid to explore new things. Try to finish what you start as you will learn and grow in the telling and the work. Keep an open mind and trust in your visions.
6. What real-life inspirations did you draw from for the worldbuilding within your book?
I’m not sure! I enjoy action stories and I find the news is just so insane and confronting a lot of the time – so in some ways a kind of geo-political air of uncertainty and change probably helps inform my world view! It just seems like a violent world to me as an observer.
7) What inspires you to write?
Love of a good story is the main thing. Wanting to build my characters and their world.
8. What was the hardest part of writing this book?
The rewriting that took place probably. It was my first time in telling a complete tale and there was a lot of rewriting of the first two books in the series over multiple drafts. Once my editor, Jaye Manus, who is excellent, came on board, it really helped shape the books and was of tremendous assistance to me and the story.
9. What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?
Hmm. I really liked the sequence in Blade of Exile where it shows Demorn building up to get back to Firethorn, which she has been unable to access for some time when the story starts. That was the first part of the story I wrote mostly in the first week or so of having the idea for the series and the energy of that always stayed with me as I worked on the character of Demorn and the Asanti Series.
10. Did you learn anything from writing this book and what was it?
Mainly to just finish what you start creatively. Trust in your vision. Be passionate about your work. So many people have come to the Asanti Series after hearing me talk about it and I really love that aspect. I just love building the audience and have so many more stories to tell.
11. It’s sometimes difficult to get into understanding the characters we write. How do you go about it?
I haven’t found Demorn too hard to understand – the character isn’t a million miles from me personally! I like to sometimes let the action slow down a little so the reader can take a breathe and we can access some of her thoughts and emotions beyond the next battle or even the bigger story scope of the virus tearing apart reality. It helps build character and it’s fun to write.
12. What are your future project(s)?
Well, I’m looking forward to this ensemble book I will write after Demorn: Soul Fighter which will feature a character called Iverson, an Investigator who comes into the series in Soul Fighter. I have some ideas to put him on a mission with a couple of Innocents from Blade of Exile and basically put them into a savage one shot of a story that MAY span into more if they survive!
13. If you couldn’t be an author, what ideal job would you like to do?
I’m not sure as writing is my passion. In another world if I had genuine musical ability and a wonderful singing voice (I have neither, so this is a bigger fantasy than my series!), I would LOVE to be a country rock star! I adore artists like Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash and George Strait. I also have a savage love for Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra. Frank Sinatra is actually (spoiler) in the first book!
14. What is your preferred method to have readers get in touch with or follow you (i.e., website, personal blog, Facebook page, here on Goodreads, etc.) and link(s)?
I would recommend everyone to check out the Asanti Series on Facebook. I curate the page and always try and add cool articles I find along with updates of the series and reviews I do, mostly for the Batman Universe Network!
I’m active on twitter and my twitter handle is @redlantern2051
My books are available and OUT NOW on Amazon! Blade of Exile is now out in paperback and City of Innocents is about to head to the printers!
My Amazon Author Page is http://author.to/DavidFinn_US
Demorn: Blade of Exile https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B018ZVID4U/ref=series_dp_rw_ca_1#navbar
Demorn: City of Innocents https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01AN88H5S/ref=series_dp_rw_ca_2#navbar
My Goodreads Author page is https://www.goodreads.com/author/dashboard
Thank you so much for your time and making it this far!
An excellent interview by a cool guy. I’ll always be available to interview people, and got many more lined up in the coming weeks and months. If you’d like one, don’t hesitate to message me. Until next time, on Dragonball Z! …..*tumbleweed*. Yes, a bad joke. But seriously, will be with you guys another time, hopefully soon!