Get to know the author – Juli D. Revezzo

I loved getting to know movie lover, fantasy enthusiast and zombie writer Sara Shrieves last week. This week I’m very happy to be interviewing Juli D. Revezzo, a high fantasy lover who hides away in her writing cave using mythology to help craft her novels.

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JuliDRevezzobTell us about yourself? Do you write for a living? If not, what’s your day job?

Well, I can’t say I write necessarily for a living, but it does take up my whole day sometimes. I don’t really work outside the house these days.

Favourite food, place, colour and writing zone, please.

Favorite food would be Italian food–spaghetti and sauce, lasagna, pizza. Color: Purple. Writing zone…well, my little office in the back room. Or writing cave as it’s affectionately known.

You write in the fantasy/supernatural genre….who’s been your inspiration?

I like most traditional high fantasy I’ve read: Tolkien, Melanie Rawn, J.V. Jones. I have to say my all around favorite is Michael Moorcock. After them come the classics, LeFanu and Poe other such authors.

Favourite books? Movies? TV Shows?

For books, The Elric Series, is always my top choice, also Moorcock’s Von Bek books, then there are authors like Patty G. Henderson and S.G. Rogers, and, and, and (gosh where do I cut off the list?). For movies, I’m a fan of the Aliens films; Excalibur is also longtime favorite. Also the Lord of the Rings films, the Narnia films, the Underworld series, I could go on and on…

Who’s your favourite all time fictional character?

I have to say Elric, then King Arthur.

The Artist's InheritanceWho’s your favourite character in your own work?

The heroine of The Artist’s Inheritance, Caitlin and after her, Beryl, the witch.

Let’s talk superpowers….there’s no denying we’d all love one. What would be your choice, and why?

Weather manipulation would be nice. Why? It’d be nice to be able to keep hurricanes away from land. I also wouldn’t mind teleportation. Wouldn’t that just make travel easier?

Inspiration’s a funny thing. Where do you find yours? Is there one particular moment that stands out?

A lot of the time I find it in reading mythology. For instance The Artist’s Inheritance was influenced by the fact that at the time I started writing it I’d just finished the Welsh mythological tome The Mabinogion and a handful of Irish mythological texts. We tend to think of the gods as helpful and loving but they could be meddling when they wanted to be or if a lesson was necessary. So I played on that theme in my novel. How would a wife deal with it if the gods came and smacked her husband upside the head for something?

Writers have very different approaches to completing our works. Are you a heavy plotter? Jump back and forth between scenes? Sit down, start at the beginning and just write?

I definitely tend jump back and forth. I can write a whole section at a good clip. But then the steam will peter out and I’ll jump forward to keep going until I can fill in that hole.

House of CardsWhat’s fresh about your books? Quirky and different? Likely to entice readers and keep them coming back for more?

I think if people go into them thinking the ghosts are the bad dudes, they’re in for a shock. My ghosts tend to help out the living more than I think in most ghost stories you might encounter. And when the gods are brought into most novels they’re not treated fairly. I tried to treat them a wee bit better in my own, (though with what they put my heroine, Caitlin, through she’s got a right to be bitter). Also, I try to stay away from the “idyllic retirement home” or beachcomber feel that so many books set here tend to. I try to write it as “at home” as I’ve always felt.

What are you working on now?

I’m working on a follow up to The Artist’s Inheritance and *sheepishgrin* will soon be getting started on some revisions on a paranormal romance novel I just sold. It’s a wee bit different than The Artist’s Inheritance, I must admit!

How can readers connect with you?

You can find my books at AmazonBarnes and Noble, and Smashwords. Feel free to visit my homepage, Facebook, Twitter or other social networking links to say hi.

Good Reads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5782712.Juli_D_Revezzo

On G+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/111476709039805267272/posts

On Librarything: http://www.librarything.com/profile/julidrevezzo

On Manic Readers: http://www.manicreaders.com/JuliDRevezzo/

On Shelfari: http://www.shelfari.com/authors/a1002694572/Juli-D-Revezzo/

Get to know the author – Patty Jansen

Can you believe we’re in November already? The race is onto Christmas, and if you’re a writer, then you might even be participating in NaNoWriMo this year. Last week I brought you the insights of Drako, an author who fills his world with beautiful dragons. This week we turn to Patty Jansen, a science fiction and fantasy author who has a back-catalogue to keep you going for months!

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Tell us about yourself? Do you write for a living? If not, what’s your day job?

When I’m not writing,  I sell non-fiction books online.

Favourite food, place, colour and writing zone, please.

Coffee & chips in my office and my own chair. If not, out on the back veranda where I can sit in the nuddy (not that I ever do) and no one would see. From up there, the only thing I can see is trees!

You write in the fantasy/supernatural genre….who’s been your inspiration? Favourite books? Movies? TV Shows?

Actually, my inspiration has been my job. I worked as a research scientist and often wondered about taking the science (nonsensical or real) into the realm of the impossible. My favourite writer is C.J. Cherryh, my favourite movie is Independence Day and I don’t watch TV. I’m baaaaad at pop culture.

Who’s your favourite all time fictional character?

I absolutely adore C.J. Cherryh, and my all-time favourite character is Banichi from the Foreigner series. Yes, he’s an alien, but he’s awesome.

Who’s your favourite character in your own work?

I have a favourite character in every book. In my current WIP (Shifting Reality, currently serialised on my blog by way of ARC), my favourite character is Ari Suleiman Rudiyanto. Yes, he’s Indonesian (the name kinda gives it away), and he’s gay, and does dubious things in a space station. He’s also very smart, and because he’s bored, he does the most stupid things, like tinkering with important technology and smuggling stuff.

Let’s talk superpowers….there’s no denying we’d all love one. What would be your choice, and why?

I’d love to be able to live a very long time, like some of my characters.

Inspiration’s a funny thing. Where do you find yours? Is there one particular moment that stands out?

Oh yes. I sold a novel to a small press (Ambassador, coming out in 2013), and this book started in a very strange way. Usually, inspiration for a novel will come as a scene where two characters are talking to each other. I’d always wanted to do something thriller-y and political, and I had this idea of a character going on a major mission (the character is Cory Wilson, who as kid is the main character of my kids novel The Far Horizon). Cory was talking to this important person about a job he was about to do. I made a note of this scene, intending to file it for later. The scene was really boring, full of backstory and setting. These scenes never survive in the final product.

Anyway, the scene was so boring that my brain subconsciously decided to make it more interesting: it threw a bomb into the window of the office where the meeting was taking place. I spent the next four drafts finding out who did it.

Writers have very different approaches to completing our works. Are you a heavy plotter? Jump back and forth between scenes? Sit down, start at the beginning and just write?

Oh no, I am a pantser extra-ordinaire. In fact, I’m a pantser to my own detriment. Plotting bores me to death, although I’ll probably have to do a lot more of it if I want to be more efficient.

What’s fresh about your books? Quirky and different? Likely to entice readers and keep them coming back for more?

I write three distinct genres:

My space-based SF is hard SF. Lookie, see! I’m a woman writing hard SF. I’m trying to prove that science geekery and character development are not mutually exclusive.

My space opera is unique in that it contains aliens, and it contains Earth in a way we can recognise it, in other words, not that far into the future. In my space opera world, alienoid humans came to Earth in 1968, and lived as humans amongst us. They came, not to the US, not the UK, or not South Africa, but to Athens, Greece. It’s kinda funny how I wrote all of my novel Ambassador before the current crisis, and it’s almost as if that book was prophetic. It’s scary.

My fantasy is weird. It’s not medieval, it’s not urban fantasy, there are some science elements. My trilogy is set in a post-apocalyptic world where something that sounds suspiciously like radio-activity doubles as magic. Some people can use it, many die from exposure. I did a fair bit of reading on radiation poisoning for this one. One of the countries has steam power and uses telegraphs and balloons. Not the standard fantasy fair.

What are you working on now?

My hard SF novel Shifting Reality is almost finished.

Tentative blurb:

A few years ago, a military doctor walking the corridors of New Jakarta Station saved Melati’s life. She signed up for the International Space Force to pay back her moral debt to him. But her family thinks she has betrayed her people. It was ISF who forcefully removed their grandmothers and grandfathers from the crowded slums of Jakarta to work in interstellar space stations.

It is Melati’s job to teach six-year old construct soldiers, artificial humans grown in labs and activated with programmed minds. Her latest cohort has one student who claims that he is not a little boy, but a mindbase traveller whose swap partner took off with his body. It soon becomes clear that a lot of people are scouring the station for this man, a scientist with dangerous knowledge.

What would be a better place to hide a fugitive than in the seething mass of traditional and modern cultures and subcultures in New Jakarta’s B-sector? Problem is, Melati’s family, and especially her cousins Rina and Ari, are involved in a scheme to sell the scientist in return for greater political power for the workers so that those who wish can return to Indonesia. Never mind that if the scientist’s knowledge falls into the wrong hands, none of them will live to exercise that right.

After this, I will be writing the sequel to Watcher’s Web, after which I may write a quasi-historical fantasy based on the Dutch VOC, in which the Chinese come to a city that sounds suspiciously like 17th century Amsterdam in steam ships. Watch 17th century Europe & their squabbling royalty fight over steam power and cosying up to the Chinese! Yeah, I love torturing history. MWAHAHAHAHA!

 How can readers connect with you?

I’d love everyone to follow my blog Must Use Bigger Elephants. I also have a website: http://pattyjansen.com, and am on Facebook and Twitter.

If you’d like to find out more about Patty’s extensive range of books, please see her Amazon author page. Enjoy!

Get to know the author – L.E. Fitzpatrick

Last Tuesday I featured Grant Taylor; budding indie author and writer of Heavens Door. This week it’s L.E. Fitzpatrick’s turn, welsh resident and author behind the Dark Waters fantasy series.

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Tell us about yourself? Do you write for a living? If not, what’s your day job?

I’m an independent author, which means I don’t make enough money to buy a pint of milk, never mind paying a mortgage. I supplement my income with a full time job managing an accountancy firm and… wake up it’s not that boring… okay maybe it is, but at least it pays the bills and keeps Ebay in business. I’m also a haphazard mum and owner of many disobedient pets.

Favourite food, place, colour and writing zone, please.

The greatest food in the world is cheese. Without it we would be a poorer species and my life certainly wouldn’t be worth living.

I am very lucky to live in West Wales, where we have green hills, blue seas and lots of rain. So far I haven’t found a better place in the world to spend my time.

Red is my favourite colour, I’m sure there is a psychological reason why, but I’m damned if I know what it is.

When I write, usually I am sat on my tattered leather arm chair, with my laptop perched on a cushion and my fat, toothless cat sat beside me.

You write in the fantasy/supernatural genre….who’s been your inspiration? Favourite books? Movies? TV Shows?

I am a big fan of Scott Lynch, Joe Abercrombie, John Connolly and Neil Gaiman as writers, usually when I’m stuck on a chapter I pick up one of their books to push me along.

Who’s your favourite all time fictional character?

I’m not sure I’d say that he was my favourite character, but certainly the one that has stayed with me all these years is Mr Pudd from John Connolly’s Charlie Parker series. He is the creepiest, scariest character I have ever read and I still have nightmares about him. I can’t even begin to describe him – just read the series.

Who’s your favourite character in your own work?

Certainly in the Dark Waters books, Egan Wey is my favourite character. He’s a lawless lowlife and is such fun to write, especially alongside my more serious characters. There’s something very liberating about putting yourself in a drunken pirate’s boots and smashing up an inn somewhere.

Let’s talk superpowers….there’s no denying we’d all love one. What would be your choice, and why?

Flying – I’ve always wanted to fly, I think this is because I spent a lot of time on public transport and just being able to fly home after a long day at work is really appealing – of course weather resistance would then be another essential power I’d need for it to be at all beneficial

Inspiration’s a funny thing. Where do you find yours? Is there one particular moment that stands out?

The backdrops of my stories are all derived from an interpretation of folklore. I’ve always been very interested in mythology, especially Celtic mythology and this forms the foundation of most of my work. For instance in my Dark Waters series the pirate tribe the Fimorri are inspired by sea demons from Irish mythology. I like to take old concepts and develop a different spin on them.

Writers have very different approaches to completing our works. Are you a heavy plotter? Jump back and forth between scenes? Sit down, start at the beginning and just write?

I always know my ending before I start writing. But I prefer to let my characters work the plot for me. Sometimes this is quite tough, especially writing about a bunch of rebellious pirates, but the result is a much more fluid, credible story. Most of my chapters are re-written at least twice before I am satisfied, some can take a lot longer.

In the Dark Waters series, because I focus on a number of different characters, I wrote each storyline individually, starting with the main characters. Once I have the entire book written I then mercilessly edit and weave it altogether.

What’s fresh about your books? Quirky and different? Likely to entice readers and keep them coming back for more?

My books are fast paced, character driven stories. I am drawn to the darker side of writing, but deliver these themes with my own twisted sense of humour, which is hopefully on the right side of good taste. The Dark Waters world is unique, exciting and totally unpredictable. My characters are bold, usually flawed and more often than not doomed.

What are you working on now?

I’m currently finishing Part Three of the Dark Waters series; Flames and Blood. Hopefully this will be out by next month. Thereafter I am mulling ideas around for another series, totally different from pirates and zombies, but there’s still another two books after Flames and Blood to get out before Dark Waters is anywhere near finished.

How can readers connect with you?

I’m on facebook, Twitter and I have a personal blog and website, the latter of which has extras and samples to the Dark Waters series.

L.E. Fitzpatrick’s Dark Waters series are available on Amazon, with Harvest, the first in the series, available at Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk. If you want to pick up both of the books, Traitors Day, book 2, can be found at .com and .co.uk. They’re only 77p ($1.25) each, so give them a go!