Tuesday, July 19, 2011

IWU! Week Seven welcomes Steven Drennon!

This week I'm honored to have as my guest, the talented and prolific indie author Steven Drennon, creator of the fantasy novel THREE FOR AVADAR. Steve has been writing since he was fifteen and has penned  nearly one thousand poems. Today he will enlighten us on all his projects, including both his poetry as well as his novels.

Hi Steve, thank you for stopping in.

1 Tell us about you upcoming release.
Actually, I just released a new fantasy novel titled “Three for Avadar” a couple of weeks ago. It is a light fantasy novel with all the traditional magic and swordplay, but a touch of implied romance added in for the fun of it!

2 How did you come up with the title of your book?
The story is about three separate travelers who are all headed for the same location, a city named Avadar. When they are all three thrown together by chance and end up travelling together, the title became apparent!

3 What is---------about?
The three separate characters each have their own agenda and reasons for venturing to Avadar. There is a warrior who is headed there to offer his sword in the king’s army so that he can fight to avenge the death of his brother and his brother’s family.

There is also a young sorceress who is seeking to recover a powerful crystal that was secreted away by her father just before he was murdered. She is certain that her father’s killer is trying to obtain the same crystal, so she must get to it before he does.

Lastly, we have a wayward princess who is still trying to figure out what she wants out of life. She has been on a voyage of self-discovery but is now being summoned home to Avadar. While part of her is the loyal daughter who is responding as expected, a part of her is still rebellious and wants more from life.

4 Did anything special inspire you to write this particular  story? Why?
My youngest daughter asked me if I had ever considered adding an element of romance to a fantasy novel, and I thought that might be an interesting challenge. I decided to add two women so that there would be a challenge for our hero in deciding where his heart lies, and it turned out to be a lot of fun to write.

5 Tell us a little about any current works in progress.
I am currently working on three separate suspense novellas. I have completed an epic fantasy and a shorter traditional fantasy novel, so I wanted to do something a little different. Each of these novellas will be released individually once they are ready, and then after I finish the third I will combine them together in a single book as well.

The first novella is titled “Desperate Love”, and I expect it to be released around the first of August, 2011. This story is about a loner who decides that he will do anything at all to obtain the woman he loves, even though she is married and doesn’t really know he exists. Of course, he is convinced that he can change all of that!

The second novella is called “Shattered Vows”, and I hope to have it released in September of 2011. This story is about a recently married middle aged couple who seem to have it all, at least until the fateful day that the wife is shot to death in front of her husband in a crowded parking lot. After a couple of weeks of mourning, he receives a phone call from the killer who has called to apologize. He is apologizing because his intended target had been the husband!

The third novella is tentatively titled “Final Justice”, and I hope to release it in October of 2011. This story is about a former Marine sniper who decides to take matters into his own hands after his daughter’s killer is released on a technicality. He plots his revenge on the killer, and just when he is about to take his shot, someone else puts the man down. Now our Marine is trying to find out who stole his chance at revenge while trying to decide whether to thank the person or bring them to justice.

6 What do you as an author find as the most challenging aspect of writing? How do you deal with this?
Without a doubt, my single biggest challenge has always been finding the time to write. With a family and a full time job, it is hard to set aside the time you need without feeling like you are neglecting the wife or the kids, or even the boss.

What I have done to try to address this is to set aside designated times for writing when everyone else is asleep or gone. My wife leaves for work at 6am, so I try to write for an hour after she leaves and then I get ready for work and get the kids off to school.

In the evenings, I am always the last one to go to bed, and I try to spend about an hour or so each evening trying to get some more writing done then. I don’t always make the best use of these time slots, but at least I know that I have them available for when the desire to write hits me.

7 What are you currently reading?
I am currently reading “33 A.D.” by David McAfee. It is so totally out of character for me, but the premise just caught my imagination and I had to read it! The story is about a vampire who has been tasked with killing someone, and not just anyone. This vampire is out to kill Jesus Christ!

8 If you could coauthor a story with any writer out there—deceased or alive—who would it be? Or would you even consider collaboration?
I think I would love to collaborate, and there are a number of indie writers I have read recently that I think I would enjoy working with very much. The one that first comes to mind is M. Edward McNally, the author of “The Sable City”. It is an epic fantasy written on a grand scale, and that happens to be my favorite kind of story to read and write. I love the way he paints his scenes and really draws the reader into the heart of the story!

9 Writing can be very challenging—what do you do to just “get away” for a break every so often?
Funny you should ask that, considering I just returned from a weeklong vacation at the beach! It was just my wife and I, with no computers and very limited television or telephone. In addition to that, we try to set aside one weekend each month which becomes our “slug” weekend, where we just relax and watch television and don’t worry about chores or the internet or anything else but spending time with each other.

10 What do you like LEAST about writing?
I suppose the one task that I see as a real chore is the editing process. It’s so hard to keep from getting caught up in your own story and forcing yourself to take a critical eye to your work.

11 Any advice for beginning authors?
Figure out what story you want to tell and then sit down and write it! Whether you outline it or just jot a few notes to get a general idea of what you want to say and where you’re going with the story doesn’t matter. The important thing is to just write it already!

12 Tell us about your other published works.
I have another fantasy novel which was released in the spring of 2011 titled “Rise of the Raven”. This is an epic fantasy novel with over 115,000 words which features many of the traditional sword and sorcery elements one would expect from such a book. It tells the story of a young wizard who becomes part of a group of wizards known as the Khand. These wizards are tasked with protecting the dimension barrier which separates our world from a world of demons and other evils, and from the very beginning they find that this dimension barrier is under attack.

This book goes into a lot of detail telling the story from both the good and the evil character’s points of view. I have had a number of people who have commented that the battle scenes are some of the best they’ve ever read! I’ve gotten a lot of criticism over the beginning of the story with people complaining that it starts out too slow, and frankly I agree. As a result, I am rewriting the first three chapters to spruce things up and get you right into the story, so if anyone has purchased it already, please get the new version!

In addition to my two fantasy novels, I have released eight different poetry books. There are six volumes with 100 poems each, as well as two anthologies. Each anthology includes the full contents of three of the original volumes along with an additional 150 poems that had never before been published.

13 How can readers contact you?
I welcome their visits and comments at my web site, which is located at http://www.drennon.com/.

Three for Avadar

Rise of the Raven

Meant to Be - Poetry Anthology 1

Promises - Poetry Anthology 2

Thank you, Steve, for being a guest on my blog this week. Good luck with all your projects and we look forward to seeing more of your work.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, Steve. Three for Avadar sounds awesome and I LOVE the cover. I will be looking for the August release.