Sky Fighters and Houndy Crunchers
Sky Fighters Part II: Redemption of the Rebels
Sky Fighters Part III: Champions of Evensongland
Sky Fighters Part IV: Deadly Encounters
Sky Fighters Part V: Rise of the Sky Sailors
Sky Fighters Part VI: Lucifer’s Henchmen
Sky Fighters Part VII: Secrets of the Past
What inspired your most recent book?
My first inspiration for Sky Fighters Part VII came as I was playing Tomb Raider: Chronicles. In this game, the heroine, Lara Croft is missing, presumed deceased. And so, this idea also ties into the cliff-hanger ending of my 6th novel, Sky Fighters Part VI: Lucifer’s Henchmen. I won't give away any major spoilers for either book, however. I'll only say my second inspiration came from a dream I had, which was the result of me seeing an old-fashioned grain elevator. This building features prominently in another chapter.
What was the hardest scene or character to write in your most recent book?
There was this one scene, where I had to describe the path of an actual hurricane...In this case, it was Hurricane Wilma. Then, about half-way through the 'scene' I realized I didn't do my research of the hurricane properly. So, then I had to come up with a 'technique' where the entire storm was magically transported from the ocean near Africa to near Florida, in North America. I also had to ensure the times and the dates were accurate. It wasn't easy, but I did fairly-well.
Tell us your favourite character you’ve created.
I have two... A young man by the name of Gregoroth Rushenido. He is the younger brother of Master Mantecendo Rushenido and, while he is not the smartest Very Intelligent Space Alien anyone has ever met (no thanks to his indignant step-family), he is adamant and caring.
For the ladies, this would be none other than Michelle “Holly” Crawford. She is known for being quizzical, yet gentle. But she is also more than capable of defending herself, her family, and her friends if need be. As of Sky Fighters Part VI, Holly is holding more than one major secret about her life and her past.
How do your books differ from each other?
For starters, the first four books are actually novella-length, rather than full-length novels. In addition to this, if my novellas and my novels were movies or 'seasons' of a TV show, they would have different, various maturity ratings. For instance, Parts I, II, and VII might have a TV-PG rating, while parts III and IV would have a TV-14 rating. Parts V and VI would likely be TV-MA, due to their content. Finally, the parts vary, depending on how much action they have in them. Part I only has a little action in it, while Part VI has more action than any individual part in the series.
Do you use a lot of personal experience in your books, or do you try to write objectively?
I tend to base my works on parts of my life's experiences, because it allows me to more easily control the flow of the story. This in turn helps me (and maybe other readers) to make more sense out of it.
Have you ever written a story from a dream?
Oh, yesh indeed! For instance, my most recent novel has at least one story in it was derived from a dream I had. Although, the story did not mirror the dream perfectly.
What genre that you haven’t tried already would you like to?
Definitely a “series bible” and a historical-fantasy story, which focuses more on buildings and locations, with very few, if any characters. Also, I'd like some stories to have more illustrations.
Do you base characters on people you know?
Often times, I do, but not all the time. Some characters are pure 'figments' of my imagination.
Did you ever consider a pseudonym?
Yesh, at one point, I did consider the name Henry Crawford, but did not use it as it was meant for one of the main characters in my story more than being meant for me, personally.
Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?
Yesh indeed! Some of these are subtle hints regarding certain characters, which will be revealed in later novels. Others contain plot devices and information about certain locations and/or items.
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
I read all of my book reviews. And while I'm not fond of seeing blank ratings of any kind (whether good or bad), I am not gunning for top-ratings of 4 and 5 stars. If someone doesn't like my book and they specifically state why, I simply let it be what it is. Not everyone is a “Superior Fan”.
Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?
I am most definitely trying to build a massive body of work with connections being made between each of my 8 novellas/novels. This book series I am writing now is an epic-saga, where one part is meant to span the length of a whole year...with very few exceptions. However, the series can be split right down the middle, and one could say I actually have two sagas: one made up entirely of novellas, and the other one, which is comprised of all full-length novels. And even though the reader can decide how much (or how little) they want to read, all of my books are always available for purchase.
How do you select the names of your characters?
Most of my characters will have at least a common name, such as Henry, Holly, Fabian, and Carmen. However, my alien characters tend to have more complex names, like Sosomonday and Zeniar'inkaseh, to name a couple. Can you pronounce these names? Go on...Try it. ;-)
How long on average does it take you to write a book?
To give you a general idea, my latest work, Part VII took me almost a year to fully-complete it from start to finish. Other novellas may take between 4 and 7 months to write, while more complex full-length novels may take up to 2 years or a little longer to be ready for publication.
What one thing would you give up to become a better writer?
Erm...Does my virginity count? No!? Just kidding! In all honesty, I would not give up anything to become a better writer. I'm not trying to become the next J.K. Rowling or the next Rick Riordan or the next anyone, really. I've already spent a lot of time writing, publishing, re-writing, and marketing my works. And for the time being, I'm satisfied with how everything came out.
Do you ever think it’s ethical to reply to your book reviews?
Maybe... It all depends on what the book review says, if I agree with it or not, and if the web-site it's posted on allows authors to interact with readers who review their works.
Do you always give books not your own a chance right up until the end, or are you quick to DNF?
I usually give books which I didn't write a fair chance. And while I can pretty much finish another person's novel, there are a few choice topics where I draw the line. One of them is like, in Haunted by Chuck P. where the story is just to 'sleazy' and full of things of a disgusting or disturbing nature. Other things include, but are not limited to scenes involving rape and/or torture.
Do you think writer’s block exists?
Yesh, writer's block does exist, and yesh I have had it at least once. And I can tell you why to: For quite a while, I was not describing the details of the battles in an accurate, believable manner. I was constantly referring to the characters' health, energy, and mystical prowess as “Points” rather than actually showing how they felt if one or more of these vital resources began to run low. I would view these battles almost as mathematical problems I needed to solve using technical documents I wrote up to 'guide' me through each battle. As a result of this, my characters ran away and hid from me for months on end, while my Mom advised me to change this tired, old system repeatedly. Finally, I woke up and made a change so radical, my characters will no longer leave me alone! They love me so much, they're all over me like raccoons to a fruit tree. But I still have to be careful not to strain them to much. For this reason, the absolute maximum number of pages I'll write in a day is no more than 2.
What is the most unethical practice in the publishing/distribution industry?
The very fact in which most of the “traditional publishers and agents” won't accept “unsolicited submissions” from Indie authors. If this is the case, then how in the Hell did all those big-name authors like Suzanne Collins and Rick Riordan become so damn famous!? They must have done something to garner the attention of a big-name publisher. But they're keeping it a closely-guarded secret. And to me, nothing in the writing industry is worse than having doors closed on me.
What does literary success look like to you?
1: When I have sold at least 25 copies of every novel I publish. 2: When every one of my works has at least 10 reviews on Amazon and Good-Reads. And 3: When at least a few people recognize me on the street and either ask me for my autograph or for advice pertaining to writing.
What is your favourite character of another author?
This is a very close tie between Sadie Kane of The Kane Chronicles and Cass from The Secret Series. And of these two young women, Sadie wins in terms of her physical beauty, while Cass gains the upper-hand in terms of her logic. Just consider what would happen if they met each other! ^_^
How do you feel about book pirating?
In my eyes, book pirating is just as bad as any other kind of pirating: it's when an outside entity is taking property belonging to someone else (whether it's intellectual or not) and sells it in order to make money for themselves! And whenever a person is pirating, they're stealing someone else's work and using it as a free and easy method of striking it rich! Whether it's using films, TV shows, or music, pirating is wrong. People such as me work very hard in order to create high-quality content for other people. Whether it's for entertainment or practical purposes, we're the ones doing the hard work. So, we don't want to see someone else benefiting from our products and/or projects. Catch my drift?
Do you have a hidden talent?
Yesh, but I'm not going to tell you what it is. I'll only say this much: in at least one of my novels exists an item, which could actually be invented. And I plan to do so in the very near future...
What book do you own or have read that might surprise your readers?
I own (and have read) A Taste of Smoke. It is a short story for women, and about women who go on a camping trip. While they're out and about in this wilderness, one of them has a rather unexpected experience. I won't say what it is, just in case anyone listening is interested in reading it.
Which author would you like to write your biography?
I think it would be incredibly cool if either Suzanne Collins, J.K. Rowling, or Jean Craighead George were to write my biography for me, instead of me having written it all on my own.
If you could hybrid two animals, what would they be and why?
I think it would be just awesome if I could breed a cat with a falcon (or an eagle) in order to create a griffin! ... Or would I end up with a Sphinx instead? One can only guess!
If you could live as any character in fiction, who would it be and why?
I would probably either become Harry Potter in his titular novel series or Itachi Uchiha from the Naruto Anime and Manga. I can't think of a third character, unfortunately...Sorry!
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