Why epic fantasy?
It’s a genre that really grabbed hold of me back in my high school years. The sheer breadth of what a writer can delve into makes epic fantasy the perfect playground for a polymath like myself–basically, I find everything that makes a world work interesting on some level, and in epic fantasy you have the opportunity to tweak almost anything you like.
What approach did you take differently for The Godhead Wars?
While I love epic fantasy and its potential for a reader to get delightfully and dreadfully lost in a detailed world, there has been a trend in the genre in the last couple decades or so to produce ever longer, bloated series that even the most talented of authors seem to have trouble finishing, or they simply get repetitious (I’m not going to name names, but there are several that probably come to mind). My goal with The Godhead Wars was to create a series that was epic in scope without being epic in length. I wanted the world-spanning intrigue without the tedious morass that that can easily sink into. So, really, it is somewhat experimental. I hope I am making it work.
On that note, how long will the series be?
Four books. That’s it. I have it basically outlined, and it is fitting into four books come hell or high water. My basic assumption while writing is that if I am getting bored while writing it, the reader will be bored reading it. That helps me move things along.
So, uh, when’s the next one coming out?
This year–2013! [Yeah, sorry about that.] More updates will come as it gets closer to being ready.
Why The “Godhead” Wars, a Christian reference?
In many fantasies, religion is either secondary or practically non-existent. I wanted to explore a fantasy world in which religion was often the prime motivator (and source of conflict) for the characters. While the fictional world of The Godhead Wars has nothing to do with real-world religion, the central disagreement among various factions in the story is what entities comprise the god/gods or “godhead” that should be properly worshiped, and the nature of the Godhead in Christianity is famously a source of confusion and disagreement among Christians.
So it’s mostly characters sitting around campfires debating arcane philosophies?
Nope! There’s a ton of action and adventure. I like to think a story can have weight and still be fun.
Do you try to avoid certain tropes of the fantasy genre, like the farm-boy/”Chosen One” or the evil overlord?
Yes and no. Part of choosing the genre was to play with some of those archetypes, but also the genre has broadened enough in recent years that a writer generally isn’t forced into those corners anymore. So I tweaked the ones I wanted to, and left out entirely those I wasn’t interested in. For instance, there are no elves. Now, I love Tolkien as much as the next fantasy fan-turned-writer, but not everything needs elves.
What else do you plan to write?
Before I was a fantasy fan I was a science fiction fan, so that is definitely in the cards. I don’t want to speculate too much or make too many promises at this point, because, you know, life and all.