So one problem about the blog tour that I exacerbated by doing two books at once is that it’s easy to get the wires crossed if careful. The Avid Reader was promoting On Seas So Crimson, and I managed to think it was doing An Unproven Concept. Didn’t catch the mistake until the post was up. In any case, here’s the interview:
1. What inspired you to write An Unproven Concept?
When I sell the book in person, I tell people it’s a mix of Battlestar Galactica, Robotech, and Halo. These are several of the influences and inspirations for my sci-fi works. Mainly I also wanted a military sci-fi series without “hero shields,” i.e., true peril for all characters involved.
2. Can you tell us a little bit about the next books in the Vergassy Series or what you have planned for the future?
The next book out will be Though Our Hulls Burn…, which is chronologically a prequel. One of the criticisms that I got the most from readers in response to An Unproven Concept was that a lot of “big picture” things were referenced by not fully explained. So going to go back 15 years to 3035 and explain what happened.
3. Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in An Unproven Concept?
Without giving away spoilers, I take a “large cast so I can whack some of them” approach to casting decisions. I also believe that characters, like real people, should come into a story with a past. For instance, Mr. Marcus Martin is a former Confederation Marine officer who lost his entire platoon in an incident prior to the start of An Unproven Concept. This has led to him having mental trauma and feelings of worthlessness that play a role in his decisions as the starliner Titanic’s chief security officer.
4. You know I think we all have a favorite author. Who is your favorite author and why?
My favorite author of all time is Jack McKinney (pseudonym), the author of the Robotech series. The two men who actually wrote under the singular name did an excellent job of taking the rather thin background of the anime series and expanding it into something deeper.
As to actual singular authors versus collaborations—I’m a fan of early Harold Coyle and David Drake. In both cases, it’s how visceral they make their combat scenes and characters.
5. If you could time-travel would you travel to the future or the past? Where would you like to go and why would you like to visit this particular time period?
I always think this one is a loaded question. I mean, the last thing someone wants to do is time travel to, say, “Up Then” in the Terminator universe. With regards to going backwards—well, let’s just say if I show up on an Antebellum Plantation things are not going to end well.
But…if I had a choice where I could just observe without being scene or interacted with? I’d like to go backwards to the Titanic, as I’ve always been a student of the wreck. Forward? I’d go forward 100 years to see if we actually get our flying cars.
6. Do you have any little fuzzy friends? Like a dog or a cat? Or any pets?
Yes. My wife, fellow author Anita C. Young, and I have five pets. Our two dogs are a Newfoundland-Labrador mix and a Blue Heeler / Shepherd of some sort. As to the three cats-we have one senior cat and two kittens. The kittens were what happened when we went to “pick up an older cat that was familiar with dogs.” Whoops!
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When is the next installment in The Usurper’s War book series?
Next in the cue is the dissertation, then the Vergassy Chronicles book. So I’d say 2018 at the earliest.