Friday, May 28, 2010

Interview With Jacob Parker

Hey all! This week I had the pleasure of interviewing teen aged fantasy author, J R Parker about his new book, Kestrels Midnight Song. And now, please welcome the Yodeling Dwarf himself!

Endurance And Victory: Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?  
Jacob Parker: Sure thing. I'm eighteen years old, I've lived in Idaho my whole life, and I have the kind of overactive imagination that causes people to end up insane or published. (In my case, both)

EAD: How did you start writing?  
JP: Technically, I started writing fiction in first grade when I entered a short story contest. The Story: A super hero and his dog are captured by a bad guy. The Twist: They escape when the bad guy forgets to take the dogs super collar off, which causes an explosion that destroys the lair and frees our heroes from the bad guy's clutches. But I got serious about writing a novel... three years later; Fourth grade marked the beginning of a string of 30,000+ word Harry Potter rip-offs. But I had a blast writing them. I was hooked.
EAD: Is Kestrels Midnight Song your first book? 
JP: It's the first book I completed. Those other novel attempts—my curiously familiar characters survived a string of unrelated adventures until I gave up.

EAD: How long did it take you to write Kestrels Midnight Song?
JP: I started around my fifteenth birthday and finished the first draft around my 17th birthday. But editing... I still have some editing to do. It's a long process.

EAD: Could you tell us a little bit about Kestrels Midnight Song?
JP: Kestrel's Midnight Song is about a legendary Marauder who is waiting for his hanging in a cell at the top of a dungeon tower. Rumors are spreading that the Marauders are mounting a plan to free him and unleash the secret he guards. And it's up to a slave girl and a wandering giant to stop them.

Meanwhile, a shepherd boy is traveling across the land with no knowledge that his journey will decide the fate of the world. 
EAD: Who's your favorite character in Kestrels Midnight Song?  
JP: It's hard for me to pick. I'm really fond of this cast of characters. But I think if I had to choose, I'd pick Isaac Ganthorn. Coincidentally, he's one of the baddies. And I'll probably be the only person to pick him as a favorite. 
EAD: Do you have any plans for future books at this time? 
JP: Definitely. I'm plotting the series in sequel to Kestrel's Midnight Song. New setting, new characters, new time period. How's that even a sequel? Mwahaha. You'll see. 
EAD: What's your favorite Bible verse?  
JP: Hmmm, one verse? 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 comes to mind. Yeah, it's more than one verse. Sorry. :P 
EAD: What's your favorite fantasy book, and why?  
JP: The Harry Potter books most captivated me. I know that's somewhat controversial, but I think I enjoyed them most, and it doesn't seem like anything else comes close, though it's been a long time since I read them. 
EAD: Any tips for aspiring authors? 
JP: Plenty. :) My first tip would be not to get into writing for the money. That's kind of cliche, and it seems like everyone says that about their profession, but writing novels is perceived as being very, very profitable. When in reality, even some New York Times Bestsellers have to write two+ books a year just to achieve average income for an American (which is insanely wealthy as is, but I digress.) The very, very tip of the mountaintop is extremely wealthy, which is what feeds the misconception that writers are loaded. So make sure you're writing because you love it.

My second tip is to write a lot. Randall Ingermanson, (I think it's him) says most people write a million words before they get published. And from talking with various published authors, it seems like an accurate estimate.

Also, read a lot. It's standard, but it's a good one. From fourth grade through sixth grade I read like a maniac. For those of you familiar with the accelerated reader program, I got somewhere around 500 A.R. points in 6th grade, and I'm a slow reader. I think that period of reading was extremely beneficial for me. There's really no other way to capture the flow, rhythm, word choice, etc. of writing fiction than to read, read, read.

Thanks Jacob! Please go the link at the top of the page to see Kestrels Midnight Song.
 Also, Jacob is holding a Huge Online Party! Be sure to check that out, He'll be giving away hundreds of free books!


Jacob R Parker said...

Thanks for the interview! Let me know if you have any questions, everyone.

Celebrilomiel said...

Nice interview, Chris and Jacob! =)

Nathan R. Petrie said...

Okay here's a question Jacob....