Category Archives: Authors Think Tank Podcast

Episode #58 – Picking the Right Genre and Publisher with James Wymore

james-wymore
Growing up on a steady diet of Spider-man cartoons and television shows like Batman and Wonder Woman, James Wymore knew he would someday grow to find his own super powers and join the fight for justice. He did everything right, from experimenting with arson to jumping from great heights, but his ability to control fire or fly never kicked in.

As he went past the teen-age years, he accepted that he probably didn’t have a mutant power waiting to kick in. Neither would he discover alien origins, so he threw himself into discovering enhancements that would bring his latent abilities to the surface. He travelled the world studying arcane magic. Throughout college, he experimented with volatile chemicals, extreme temperatures, lasers, and various forms of radiation.

Eventually, he discovered the power of hypnosis through fantastic stories. He plunged into writing, filling his work with the subtle triggers that would allow him to one-day take control of all his readers’ minds and use them as an army to take over the literary world. Until that day, he works tirelessly to create more and better books.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #57 – Short Story Writing with Eric James Stone

Eric-James-StoneA Nebula Award winner, Hugo Award nominee, and winner in the Writers of the Future Contest, Eric James Stone has had stories published in Year’s Best SF 15, Analog, Nature, and Kevin J. Anderson’s Blood Lite anthologies of humorous horror, among other venues.  His first novel is forthcoming from Baen.

One of Eric’s earliest memories is of seeing an Apollo moon-shot launch on television. That might explain his fascination with space travel. His father’s collection of old science fiction ensured that Eric grew up on a full diet of Asimov, Heinlein and Clarke.

While getting his political science degree at Brigham Young University, Eric took creative writing classes. He wrote several short stories, and even submitted one for publication, but after it was rejected he gave up on creative writing for a decade.

During those years Eric graduated from Baylor Law School, worked on a congressional campaign, and took a job in Washington, DC, with one of those special interest groups politicians always complain that other politicians are influenced by. He quit the political scene in 1999 to work as a web developer in Utah.

In 2002 he started writing fiction again, and in 2003 he attended Orson Scott Card’s Literary Boot Camp. In 2007 Eric got laid off from his day job just in time to go to the Odyssey Writing Workshop.  He has since found a new web development job.

In 2009 Eric became an assistant editor for Intergalactic Medicine Show.

Eric lives in Orem, Utah, with his wife, Darci, a high school physics teacher.  His website is www.ericjamesstone.com.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #56 – Using Mythology in Your Writing with Christy Dorrity

ChristycolorfullMy name is Christy Dorrity. My family means everything to me and I love being a wife to my amazing husband, and stay at home mom to five awesome kiddos.

Reading, writing, cooking and Irish dancing make me happy. You will find a little of everything here.

I am a freelance writer and author. I write a blog about Irish dancing on IrishCentral.com, the leading Irish-American website, and at AntonioPacelli.com My articles have appeared in Feis America Magazine and DiddlyiMag. I used to write for my local newspaper, The Syracuse Islander, and I  had an article accepted for the children’s Friend Magazine.

I am a World Champion Irish dancer. I dance with my teen son, who is also a World Champion Irish dancer. We are associated with the World Irish Dance Association (WIDA).

I am the author of The Geis series for young adults. Book two in the series will be available summer 2014. Books in progress are the third volume of The Book Blogger’s Cookbook, a novella that belongs in the world of The Geis, and a lower middle grade series set in a fantasy world.

If you are interested in reading and reviewing one of my books, I will be glad to send you a free copy.

To learn more about Christy and/or sign up for her newsletter, visit her About Me on her blog.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #55 – Myths of Publishing with Christopher Loke

Christopher Loke

Christopher received his MA in communications and journalism from Utah State University. Right after graduation, he took the position of assistant editor for a major publishing house. He was also chapter president for The League of Utah Writers and a journalist for a local newspaper.

Raised in a traditional Chinese family, Christopher spent most of his childhood evenings listening to his relatives tell stories to each other. In time, he has acquired an ardor for well-told stories, particularly those that tend to touch the human heart, which sparked the beginning of his writing career.

As a writer, Christopher is passionate about good storytelling. He is actively involved in local writing groups and projects. His journalistic works have been featured and discussed in college classrooms across the country. When he is not writing, he dissects social issues and plays with his 6-year-old son.

Christopher currently resides in a quiet neighborhood near a lake in Provo, Utah, with his beloved wife and son. Follow him on his Facebook Page at facebook.com/AuthorChristopherLoke.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #54 – The Three Parts of an Awesome Story Idea

About Mr. Morris

Author of the Cragbridge Hall trilogy; The Inventor’s Secret, The Avatar Battle, and The Impossible Race. Published by Shadow Mountain.

Bald.

About Ms. Brown

A native to the ocean, transplanted into the shadow of the mountains, Small Town Shelly Brown found that if she could not surf or comb the tide pools she would write in the shade.

Mother to many, cleaner of little, friend to the United Way, this actor turned writer has decided that she is addicted to information. Please, arrange an intervention.

Contact me at
shellybrownwriter@gmail.com
Twitter @Sbrownwriter
Facebook 
Google+

Learn more at their blog.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #53 – Transitioning to Horror with Andrea Pearson

Episode #53 – Transitioning to Horror with Andrea Pearson aboutpage

 

To learn more about Andrea Pearson, visit her website at http://andreapearsonbooks.com/

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #52 – Working with Publishers with Anne Sowards

Anne Sowards
Found at http://www.armadillocon.org/

Anne Sowards is an executive editor at Penguin Group (USA) Inc., where she primarily acquires and edits fantasy and science fiction for the Ace and Roc imprints. Some of the great authors she works with include Jim Butcher, Patricia Briggs, Rachel Caine, Anne Bishop, Ilona Andrews, Jack Campbell, Karen Chance, and Rob Thurman. When she’s not reading, she listens to Chinese rap and spends way too much time playing video games. Follow her at twitter.com/AnneSowards.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #51 – Developing a Rich Story with Adam G. Sidwell

SidwellToday’s guest is Adam G. Sidwell. In between books, Adam Glendon Sidwell uses the power of computers to make monsters, robots and zombies come to life for blockbuster movies such as Pirates of the CaribbeanKing KongPacific RimTransformers and Tron. After spending countless hours in front of a keyboard meticulously adjusting tentacles, calibrating hydraulics, and brushing monkey fur, he is delighted at the prospect of modifying his creations with the flick of a few deftly placed adjectives. He’s been eating food since age 7, so feels very qualified to write the Evertaster series. He once showed a famous movie star where the bathroom was.

See Adam’s Goodreads profile.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #50 – The Brandon Sanderson Laws of Magic

Brandon Sanderson was born in December 1975 in Lincoln, Nebraska. As a child Brandon enjoyed reading, but he lost interest in the types of titles often suggested for him, and by junior high he never cracked a book if he could help it. This all changed in eighth grade when an astute teacher, Mrs. Reader, gave Brandon Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly. Brandon thoroughly enjoyed this book, and went in search of anything similar. He discovered such authors as Robert Jordan, Melanie Rawn, David Eddings, Anne McCaffrey, and Orson Scott Card. Brandon continued to be an avid reader through junior high and high school. He liked epic fantasy so much that he even tried his hand at writing some. His first attempts, he says, were dreadful.

In 1994 Brandon enrolled at Brigham Young University as a biochemistry major. From 1995 to 1997 he took time away from his studies to serve as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Brandon often says that it was during this time in Seoul, Korea that he realized that he didn’t miss chemistry one bit, but he did miss writing. Upon his return to BYU, Brandon became an English major, much to the dismay of his mother, who had always hoped he would become a doctor.

Brandon began writing in earnest, taking a job as the night desk clerk at a hotel because they allowed him to write while at work. During this era he went to school full time during the day, worked nights to pay for his schooling, and wrote as much as he could. He says it made for a rather dismal social life, but he finished seven novels during his undergraduate years. Brandon submitted many manuscripts for publication . . . and accumulated quite a pile of rejection letters. In spite of this he continued to be a dedicated writer.

Volunteering for The Leading Edge, BYU’s science fiction/fantasy magazine, was a wonderful experience for Brandon. He read many submissions, formed some lifelong friendships, and served as Editor in Chief during his senior year.

Brandon learned much about the business side of being a writer by taking a class from David Farland, author of the popular Runelords series. One piece of advice Dave gave Brandon was to attend conventions, such as WorldCon and World Fantasy, in order to connect with industry professionals. Brandon and a small group of friends who were also aspiring writers began to do so. He eventually met both his current agent and one of his editors at conventions.

It was in 2003, while Brandon was in the middle of a graduate program at BYU, that he got a call from editor Moshe Feder at Tor, who wanted to buy one of Brandon’s books. Brandon had submitted the manuscript a year and a half earlier, and had almost given up on hearing anything, so he was surprised and delighted to receive the offer. In May 2005 Brandon held his first published novel,Elantris, in his hands. Over the next few years, Tor also published Brandon’s Mistborn trilogy, its followup The Alloy of LawWarbreaker, and The Way of Kings, the first in a projected ten-volume series called The Stormlight Archive. The second book in the series, Words of Radiance, was released on March 4th, 2014. Other projects continue to be in the works.

In 2004 after graduating with his Master’s degree in creative writing from Brigham Young University, Brandon was asked to teach the class he had taken as an undergraduate student from Dave Farland. In spite of his busy schedule, Brandon continues to teach this one section of creative writing focused on science fiction and fantasy because he enjoys helping aspiring writers. It also gets him out of the house, he says. Additionally, along with Howard Tayler, Mary Robinette Kowal, and Dan Wells, he hosts the doubly Hugo-nominated writing advice podcast Writing Excuses, which has twice won a Parsec Award.

In July 2006 Brandon married Emily Bushman. Emily and Brandon ran in many of the same circles at BYU during their student days, since Emily majored in English as well. They never met, however, until a mutual friend set them up on a date in 2005. Emily had spent seven years as a teacher, but chose to quit with the birth of their first child in October 2007. Emily now works from home part time as Brandon’s business manager.

Brandon’s repertoire expanded into the children’s market when Scholastic published Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians, a middle-grade novel, in October 2007. Nancy Pearl gave this book a very favorable review on National Public Radio, which pleased Sanderson fans. Three more volumes of the series have been released so far. Additionally, Brandon’s novella Infinity Blade: Awakening was an ebook bestseller for Epic Games accompanying their acclaimed Infinity Blade iOS video game series.

In December 2007 Brandon was chosen by Harriet McDougal Rigney to complete Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series after his untimely passing. 2009′s The Gathering Storm and 2010′s Towers of Midnight was followed by the final volume in the series, A Memory of Light, in January 2013.

The only author to make the short list for the David Gemmell Legend Award six times in four years, Brandon won that award in 2011 for The Way of Kings and is on the short list again in 2012 for The Alloy of Law. He has also won the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice award for Best Epic Fantasy twice and has been nominated three other years. He was twice nominated for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. He has hit the New York Times Hardcover Fiction Best-Seller List six times, with his first Wheel of Time book knocking Dan Brown out of the #1 spot and his second dethroning John Grisham. Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians was optioned for film by DreamWorks Animation, Mistborn was optioned by Paloppa Pictures, and a Mistborn video game will be released by Little Orbit in 2013 for all platforms. Brandon’s books have been published in over twenty languages.


Follow Brandon’s blogFacebook page, and Twitter feed for up-to-date information, and check out his events calendar to see where he will be appearing. Anyone who subscribes to the mailing list and indicates what city they live in will receive reminders when Brandon’s signing tours bring him nearby. For more in-depth information and preview chapters for Brandon’s books, see the book pages, and for detailed behind-the-scenes information about the writing of each chapter, see the annotations. And for those who want a larger taste of Brandon’s writing, the entire text of Warbreaker is available here.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.

Episode #49 – A Journey Through Genre with Tristi Pinkston

Darth EditusThis week’s guest: Tristi Pinkston!

I’ve been a writer for as long as I can remember. After receiving much parental acclaim for my first masterpiece, titled “Sue the Dog,” I tried my hand at poetry. This phase lasted until my early teens, at which point my poems took a decidedly macabre turn and I decided to abandon it in favor of fantasy. That … turned out to be a fantasy.

I was taught at home by my parents. After I graduated from high school, I took two correspondence courses from Brigham Young University in creative writing, and also a course in floral design from International Correspondence Schools. After that, I took a job working at a floral shop, which I loved.
At the tender age of 18, I met then 34-year-old Matt Pinkston of Eugene, Oregon. We were engaged on our tenth date. This consequently sent my parents into shock. After we revived them, we were married in the Salt Lake Temple. I was 19 by that time, which, as we all know is so much older than 18.
We started our family with a baby girl, and then added three boys to the mix.  They’re extremely smart, beautiful, talented, spiritual, well-behaved … well, would you expect anything less of my children?
When my first son was about 8 months old, I had a strange dream which piqued my interest in World War II. As I hit the Internet and did research at the library, the story of “Nothing to Regret” came to life and was published in 2002.
The week after my fourth child joined our family in 2004, my second book “Strength to Endure” was released, written about World War II from the perspective of a German family. It was quite a kick to have a baby boy and a baby book at the same time.
March of 2008 saw a new addition to our family. No, not a child … a book. “Season of Sacrifice,” the true story of my Hole-in-the-Rock ancestors and a labor of love, was printed by Golden Wings. To tell the experiences I had while writing this book would take far too long, but I feel blessed to have been able to help preserve the memory of these remarkable pioneers and to feel of their spirit while I told their story.
With the release of “Agent in Old Lace” in 2009, I headed out into uncharted territory. Well, uncharted for me. I had never envisioned myself writing contemporary novels—I had always pictured myself sticking with historical fiction. But one day, the idea for “Agent in Old Lace” popped into my head, and I wrote it down. It’s undergone many changes since then, and I’m not sure if those who read the first version would even recognize it, but it’s all been for the better. And what a fun ride it has been! I have to admit, I have just the tiniest little crush on Rick Holden.
Most fun of all has been writing “Secret Sisters,” published in 2010. My little ladies bring out my whacky sense of humor, and I know for a fact that they talk to me and put words in my head. I look forward to sitting down to write and seeing what they’ve been up to. The release of “Dearly Departed” in January of 2011 fulfills a dream of mine – having a series published.
I’m a stay-at-home mom, a home schooler, a media reviewer, an editor, a regular presenter at the LDStorymakers’ writers conference, a Cubmaster, and a headless chicken. In addition to the novels I write, I maintain a blog which contains tips for aspiring authors and also my own personal ramblings, which sometimes make sense and sometimes do not. I enjoy reading, watching good movies, and making scrapbooks. I enjoy cooking and consider it a minor miracle when I can get all four children to like the same meal. I also enjoy making shopping lists (which I sometimes actually use), spending time with my kids, and taking Sunday afternoon naps, which are so necessary.

About James Duckett

James is a geeky, nerdy dude. He writes, sometimes. He blogs, sometimes. He's helpful to people, sometimes. He doesn't like to repeat himself, sometimes. He's funny... looking... always.

His hopes and aspirations of the future is to one day find a way that people will pay him while he sleeps. It is his dream job.