Today you get to meet Author Brian D. Anderson. He lives, eats, breathes the Fantasy genre and it is serving him well. I had heard of Brian for sometime before I finally asked for an interview. Now after finally catching up with the ones that came before you all now get to meet . . .
RW: Brian, I have to say, I detect a bit of kinship with you somehow. Where are you from?
BRIAN: I was born in Montgomery, Alabama on Maxwell AFB. Shortly after we moved to Guam. After my father left the service, we settled in Spanish Fort, Alabama.
RW: Yes, a Southern Boy. UNITE. No, wait. Hmm. Have to keep this professional. I usually wait until later to ask this, but I have to do it now with you being a Southerner like me. What’s your favorite beverage?
BRIAN: Ice cold Coca Cola made from real cane sugar from a thick glass bottle.
RW: We can end the interview now. Buy his books. He’s the best author ever. Sorry everyone else. PS Bartlett is looking at me funny right now. Trust me, she knows how. I think I need to keep going. Yes, ma’am.
Where did the title The Godling Chronicles come from and why did you choose that name?
BRIAN: The name just came to me. My son had come up with the original story concept and had named the Book One title (The Sword of Truth), along with most of the main characters. But I knew the series needed a catchy title. After a few misses I hit a winner.
The new series is called Dragonvein. It began as Dragonborn until someone pointed out that Skyrim already had used it. In fact it’s trademarked.
RW: Tell us a little about the two series.
BRIAN: The Godling Chronicles is a six book series. It’s basically a story about an unlikely hero with a secret lineage who has to save the world from certain destruction. I didn’t exactly try to reinvent the wheel, but there is plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader entertained. I would say that it is a fun story for fantasy lovers of all ages.
Dragonvein is a bit more adult – though not so much that a teen couldn’t read it. In this series there are mages, dwarves, elves, dragons, and even time travel. I can’t really go too deep into it being that it’s not yet released, but I am highly excited about this one.
RW: What inspired that first series, The Godling Chronicles?
BRIAN: My first novel was inspired by my son, Jonathan. I had been working on a story for a few weeks and getting nowhere fast. I had a basic plot, but the characters were desperately lacking in substance. Jonathan – who was seven at the time – came home from school one day, visibly excited. When I asked him what was up, he told me that he had thought of an idea for a story and wanted me to write it for him.
I listened with amazement as he spelled out the basic concept for The Godling Chronicles. I immediately put away what I was working on and began writing. The first draft was ready in only six weeks. Everything that has happened since then is a direct result of that day.
RW: Why do you write in the Fantasy genre, I mean other than because Jonathan told you to?
BRIAN: I actually began writing occult and psychological thrillers. I had tried fantasy in the past, but could never quite get the feel for it – which was frustrating considering that’s what I grew up reading. It wasn’t until my son asked me to write his idea as a book that it clicked. Now, I can’t imagine not writing fantasy.
RW: Tell us about your main character(s) and what you think will help them connect to readers.
BRIAN: In The Godling Chronicles there are several characters I would consider important. Gewey Stedding is the protagonist. Yes, I know it’s a silly name. But my son wanted me to keep it…so I did. He is a young boy on the verge of becoming a man. Orphaned and left to run the family farm alone, he is faced with many challenges I believe to be relevant and relatable to a wide range of people – from teens to adults.
Kaylia is an elf woman and primary love interest. Bold and brash, she offsets Gewey’s naiveté and inexperience.
Lee Starfinder is an older man sent to watch over Gewey (albeit from afar at first) and help him navigate through a perilous world.
This is only three of a cast of more than a dozen characters I have come to love over the past three years.
RW: What message do you think your book delivers to the reader?
BRIAN: I’ve never tried to add my politics into my work. All I’ve ever wanted to do is write stories that entertain and add a bit of fun into the lives of my readers.
RW: Who are your favorite authors?
Tolkien, of course, is the man who inspired my love for fantasy. But over the years I have come to love so many others. Ray Bradbury, Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, William Goldman, Terry Brooks, RA Salvatore, George Martin, Anne Rice, Frank Herbert, Anne McCaffrey, just to name a few. Honestly, I could go one forever.
RW: What is your escape from writing when just need a break?
BRIAN: I normally head out to the local pub and watch sports. But when it gets really tense I take a two hour drive to New Orleans and spend the night in a hotel in the French Quarter. Best music and food on the planet!
RW: What is your background in writing, what makes you a writer?
BRIAN: I always had a flare for writing and was even able to make a few bucks on the side in college writing papers for people. Later, I only wrote as a hobby. I had no real interest in publishing and no ambitions to become a professional writer. It was really my wife who convinced me to take it more seriously. After the success of my first book I was hooked.
RW: What did you learn about yourself from writing this book?
BRIAN: That I am old enough to have the patience to complete a full-length novel. I started so many over the years that I never finished. Now, I’m half way through my eighth book and still going strong.
RW: Describe your book in one word.
RW: Where can we get your book now?
BRIAN: For now I’m primarily with Amazon. That will likely change after the New Year.
RW: How do people connect with you through all forms of social media?
RW: How did you end up getting signed with your agent?
BRIAN: I am currently represented by Laurie McLean with Fuse Literary. I was fortunate enough to get a referral from Michael J. Sullivan, author of The Riyria Chronicles, after being on a blog radio show with him and Hugh Howey, author of Wool. Laurie and I clicked right away and she is largely responsible for the current interest in my new series by the NY publishers.
RW: What are you working on right now?
BRIAN: Currently I have a new series on the way, but at this point I am waiting to hear back from my agent about who will be publishing it and when it will be released. Unfortunately, the publishing industry shuts down in December so I have a few weeks of twiddling my thumbs to go. Also, I’ve begun to outline a sequel to The Godling Chronicles.
RW: What book are you reading at this time?
BRIAN: The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson (a gift from my agent).
RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?
Be patient, be consistent, and never give up. Listen to the people who have already been there. Learn from both their successes and their mistakes.
RW: If you could have written any book that exists, other than your own, what would it be and why?
The Hobbit. Because…well…it’s The Hobbit.
RW: Tell us a little about your publishing journey as far as where you started as a full fledged, self-published Indie Author to now?
BRIAN: After I completed Book One of The Godling Chronicles I was utterly in the dark as to how to proceed. I had never considered publishing before and the process was daunting to say the least. Initially I found a vanity press, but very little came of it. The cover was only so-so and the text was still badly in need of another edit and proof reading. I didn’t let this discourage me, however. I just plodded on and finished Book Two.
I didn’t want to use the vanity press again so I contacted a small press publisher. They were looking for a fantasy title and mine seemed to be a good fit. Instead of publishing Book Two, they offered to start fresh and re-issue Book One first. We changed the cover and had the book re-edited and proofed.
It wasn’t long after release that momentum began to build. A few hundred copies at first. Then, by the second full month it began to pick up steam and sales were in the thousands. I’ve often wondered exactly what did it. Certainly hard work and perseverance played a big part. But the more I think about it, I really believe the change in covers was what drew the attention of the reading public.
I released four books with small press before leaving them. I will always appreciate what they did for me, but there came a point when I had to face the fact that I had accomplished all I could with them. I was at the limit of what I could do and they were at the limit of what they could help me with. I knew enough to go it alone at that point, so we parted ways.
Since then I have released two more indie books (the final two in the series) and signed with Podium Publishing for the audio editions. On an exciting note, all of the Big Five requested a copy of the new series and I should hear back from them soon.
RW: What’s the most important thing to you about your work, your novels?
BRIAN: If I can entertain my audience and make them smile…it’s worth every minute of it.
RW: What is the one piece of advice that stays with you about writing that you’ve been given?
BRIAN: Don’t worry about how good someone else is. Do what you do.
RW: What is the one piece of book advertising or publishing that you’ve been given that sticks with you?
BRIAN: Bookbub rocks. But word of mouth is key.
RW: What are the Top 5 fun facts about you people might be surprised about?
- At age nine I spent three months trying to learn to use the force.
- I once hitchhiked from Washington D.C. To Panama City Beach
- I’ve been madly in love with Audrey Hepburn since I saw the movie Sabrina. (Ah, Audrey captures another one.)
- I spent a year working offshore and seriously considered becoming a boat captain.
- I wish I had taken dance lessons when I was young. I look like a drunk hippo on the dance floor. (I am wondering where Brian wend during that hitchhiking trip to know what a drunken hippo on the dance floor looks like.)
RW: What are two hobbies you have?
BRIAN: I played music professionally for ten years and still play occasionally in local bars. Antiques.
RW: What is your favorite word?
Okay, I think Brian and I are related. We gotta be.
It looks like you guys can get books 2-6 in Audio Format and get this, there is a Free Audio book about Lee Starfinder. And guess what else? If you want you can get Books 1-3 Bundled in one and Books 4-6. I am about to begin mine now. And if my son is good, I might even let him read them as well. Okay, that’s the end of our time together. So click here to go to Brian’s Amazon Author Page and start reading his books now. Nothing better than a series, with a new series on the way, and a sequel to The Godling Chronicles being outlined. Brian is setting us up for a long time.
Make sure to reblog and share this as much as you like to let everyone know about Brian. Don’t be surprised when you discover your friends already know who he is.
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