I was asked to partake in a book tour! Woohoo, this is the second one I have participated in and the book looks amazing. I am here to give you a highlight of the book and an author interview so here we go!
After a harrowing end to a long sea journey, the famed northern warrior Ragnar Stormbringer and a force of warriors step ashore in the lands of the Petranni, a tribal people known for their workings in silver and gold. The search for plunder takes a sharp turn when homesteads, villages, and temple sites show signs of being recently abandoned.
When it is discovered that the Petranni have all taken refuge within a massive stronghold, Ragnar and the others soon fall under the shadow of an ancient, deadly adversary. Wielding his legendary war axe Raven Caller, Ragnar finds his strength tested like never before.
Sounds great eh? I interviewed the author and here is what he had to say!
The author of the book is Stephen Zimmer and you can find him on Twitter as @sgzimmer !
Do you set a plot or prefer going wherever an idea takes you?
I am a mix between those two approaches. In writing my various series, I came to appreciate the importance of having a sense of direction and destination. I never want to write myself into a corner, and I do want to know where I am headed in a story. This requires a core structure in advance, in terms of a basic outline.
At the same time, I do not want to constrict myself in the instance that a great new idea pops up in regard to new subplots, twists and turns of the core plot, or new characters. I like to be able to give my stories room to breathe during the creation process, so I do not plot or outline to the point where I don’t have any room to maneuver if new elements strike me in the process.
I have found that this balance works very well for me, both in writing series and also in the creation of stand-alone tales such as Depths of Night.
What, according to you, is the hardest thing about writing?
The hardest thing about writing in today’s world is handling the many hats that need to be worn on a regular basis. A writer has to dedicate a lot of time to marketing, publicity, the business end, appearances, and many other things beyond the actual creative process.
These areas can be very time consuming and sometimes exhausting, and the writer must find ways to make sure that the creative path continues forward and is not too inhibited by all of the other things involved in a writer’s world.
Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?
I love to read! I am currently reading Robert A. Heinlein’s The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. Heinlein is a favorite author of mine, but other favorites include J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Clive Barker, R.A. Salvatore, Paulo Coelho, Guy Gavriel Kay, David Gemmell, Robert E. Howard, and many others. Reading engages the imagination like nothing else and I think that it is very important for writers to set aside some time for reading on a regular basis. You always learn something about writing from reading!
What is your take on the importance of a good cover and title?
In today’s flooded market, a good cover and title are extremely important. Every week there is an enormous number of new releases, so you do not have long at all to catch a reader’s attention. A good, catchy title, coupled with a strong cover, can help to gain the interest of a reader to consider buying your book.
I should also mention that a good cover requires more than just eye-catching artwork. A good cover involves skillful design and layout, including the section of title fonts and their placement. A cover designer that is adept with both art and layout is worth every penny to a publisher or indie author who self-publishes.
Which book inspired you to begin writing?
My mother read the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien when I was just seven years old, and she followed that with buying me a boxed set of the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis in paperback. I credit all of these incredible books for being the foundation of my inspiration to start down the path of storytelling and speculative fiction. These powerful novels opened my eyes to the incredible possibilities of fantasy literature and I never turned back. 😊
Thank you for having me as a guest today at Breakeven books!