I'm happy to be hosting the talented Dan Wright again on his blog tour for the final 3-part installment of his Draconica Series. I've really enjoyed the previous books and am now reading this one. You'll see my review in a couple weeks! For now, you can read my interview with him. Comments appreciated!
Where are you from and what do you do when you’re not writing?
When Daniar Dragonkin heard those words, she had no idea of the full horror that would follow. Now, enemies converge to bring to life a monstrous plan that has been set in motion since long before the events of Trapped on Draconica. A plot to bring Her back from darkness.
With her family threatened, her old enemies back to torment her - and a civil war in Baalaria preventing any help from her sister, Daniar faces the darkness moment of her entire life. Her sanity will be pushed to the limit as she faces evil in it's purest form.
Heroes will die. Villains will rise. And She will return - bringing with it the end to all of Draconica.
She Returns is the first book in the Final Ragnarok saga - and the conclusion of a trap that has been building for years. Everything you'd read about Draconica so far has been leading up to this moment. This is where it all changes - and where Draconica's ultimate fate (and of it's people) will be decided.
Where are you from and what do you do when you’re not writing?
I was originally born on the planet Asgard, to the Frost Giants. I was adopted by Odin of the Asgardians and lived in the shadow of my brother Thor for most of my life. Growing up I decided to overthrow my family using my magic and trickster ways…
Oh sorry… that’s my alter ego. But don’t tell anyone that, I’m trying to keep it low key.
Anyhoo. My name is Dan, I’m from the fairly famous town of Canterbury and, when not writing, I work in a call centre – but am hoping that one day I can earn a living from my books. I also play in a band called Rage of Silence, which is my other project. I also enjoy watching films, reading comics and manga, and I also have a fan parody series on Youtube called Totalitarian Warlord and Termination Squadron. Oh, and feeding my cat whenever she needs it.
How did you come up with the idea for this book/series?
Fantasy has always been my first love for fiction. Growing up I always loved the stories about knights and dragons and medieval stories in general, but also Greek and Egyptian mythology. This series is pretty much a mix of all the things I loved growing up. Dragons, cool looking weapons and armour, awesome magic – and sexy girls that kick ass!
Actually the last one you have to thank 80’s cartoons for. I saw a lot them growing up and one of my favs were the He-Man and She-Ra cartoons. She-Ra in particular was my first instance of seeing a superheroine and she pretty much inspired the Dragonkin.
When I was looking for art for the novel, I met an artist that was very manga-inspired with her art and that pretty much changed my outlook in the characters and the way I told the story. It helped me craft my writing style into something a little more tongue in cheek, but knowing when to take itself seriously. I’d go so far to say that Manga and Anime were the largest influences on the way I write.
Tell us about the writing process—what were your favorite and least favorite moments?
Editing is by far my most hated process! Though to be fair, I think this is any author’s most hated moment. There’s nothing more embarrassing for me going through the drafts of my work and seeing all the mistakes, typos and moments when I read back a chapter and think “What the hell was I thinking with that?” XD. This is why I often let my Mum proofread my work. She’s an expert at picking out all the grammatical mistakes and plot holes.
My favourite moment, probably goes without saying, writing the book. I often plan out months in advance how the story will go before I sit down to write it and it’s a great moment when I can sit down and put my ideas down onto paper.
What’s your favorite cure for writer’s block?
I go away for a few days, watch some films (animated films are GREAT inspirations for me at the moment) and then go back to it. There’s also a song by my favourite band, Dream Theater, called “Wither” which is about Writer’s Block, so I like to listen to that now and then for inspiration. Also, there’s this friend I had on Facebook that listens to all my ideas and she offers me a lot of support when I need it. There’s been a few times where I’ve thought about giving up – but she’s been there for me in my darkest moments. If not for her I would have given up J
Can you please share an excerpt? (250 words or less)
Oh go on then! Since you asked so nicely. I’m gonna share one of my favourite scenes from my forthcoming novel Final Ragnarok: She Returns, which involves one of my favourite characters – the Man in Shadow. In this scene, he has captured Lydia (one of the heroes) and is about to torture her. This scene perfectly captures the darkly comedic side of the Man in Shadow. And he’s a little picture of MIS to go with it.
‘Is life so inconsequential to you?’ Lydia wept.
‘Life? What is Life if not a Fantasy? A dream? Life has no meaning, no purpose – so why should I?’ One of his spider limbs let go of Lydia’s thighs and moved around her chest. ‘I could rip your armour from you and violate you in every possible way I can. I could make you scream in both pain and pleasure at the same time and I would enjoy every single second of it. I could hurt you really, really badly, just to make you scream.’
He waited for a reaction from Lydia. She just gazed at him in disbelief.
‘Nothing? Ah well. I never was one for chat up lines.’
What’s your next/current writing project?
There will be a sequel for Final Ragnarok, which I’m hoping will be out December 2015. This will be the final book in the Draconica series – and I intend to give it an epic showdown to end it! The final few chapters along will be one big fight scene.
I also have a book coming out through Paper Crane Press called Amanda Moonstone. This is a new series I’m working on, inspired by Pixar/Disney films. It’s about a sorceress that tries to rescue a missing prince – but she becomes attached to him. Amanda I think is one of the best characters I’ve created – and I hope people come to love her. She’s the kinda like my version of Elsa from Frozen, she has a huge burden to bear and it’s tearing her apart.
In actual fact, one of scenes in this book was partially inspired by the song “Say Something” by A Great Big World. When I first heard that song, I was so moved by it, it inspired me to write a scene in this book. It also has a character in there that I consider my creepiest character yet. I won’t say too much, but his name is The Author. J
That should be out sometime next year. Like my other stuff it will have art to go along with the story. I’m actually looking forward to releasing it and it’s my first book through an indie publisher so that’s really exciting for me.
Here’s a totally random question for you:
What if the world of Draconica got sucked into the Twilight Zone and emerged as an episode of Star Trek (either the original or TNG). Which characters would play the captain, first mate, security, engineering, etc? And give us a one liner that could stick to each of them, like “Damn it, Jim, I’m a doctor, not a ___.”
Ah! Random questions work for me! I must confess – I never really watched Star Trek in great detail, so I apologise if I miss out any important characters. But here’s my choices for each role. I can never remember who did what, so I’ll go with the original characters and you can probably guess who does what.
Kirk– Daniar (of course).
Spock – Rana
Bones – Erowin
Chekov – Kalak
Sulu – Finn
Uhura – Zarracka (because why not?)
Scottie – Ben (from Trapped on Draconica)
Also, I’d had Jihadain play the Khan role, because I think Daniar screaming “JIHADAIN!” in the same why Kirk cried “KHAN!” would be pretty cool!
No problem. Thanks for having me! And here’s a picture of Finn for your readers as a thank you for having me. You’re welcome! ;)
Finnnnnn!!!!!! I'm such a fangirl! He almost rivals my love for Legolas...almost :)
Dan lives Canterbury, Kent, UK. A huge fan of both Fantasy and Manga, he has a style that combines both within his writing, which lets him tell stories that are both dramatic and tongue-in-cheek at the same time. He picked up a love of Fantasy stories after reading The Lord of the Rings, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and numerous Roald Dahl novels.
Dan also runs his own website, blog and a wiki page dedicated to the world of Draconica. He has also been a reviewer for the website Read2Review and occassionally reviews books on his blog. He has also written a short comic book strip called Queller, which was published in an anthology for the comic Lighting Strike Presents... At the moment he is also currently working on a script for an independant video game - to be released in the future.
Authors who have inspired Dan are Douglas Adams, J.R.R Tolkien, Harlan Ellison, Alan Moore, Joss Whedon, H.P Lovecraft, George R.R Martin and Hiromu Arakawa.