Today D.L. Tabor, author of the dark fantasy, God of Burden, is our guest star. Thanks for being here, D.L.
If you could pick any fantasy world to live in, which would it be and why?
My first choice would be the city of Khymir in Mark E. Roger’s fantasy series, The Blood of the Lamb and in his Zorachus series. I would chose this not because it is a wonderful place to live. In fact, it would be a horrible place to live with constant, darkened skies and the threat of pure evil for a ruler. But, there are some major magic battles between wizards that happen in Khymir that I would like to witness first hand, but definitely not be involved in. There is a scene in particular in which a wizard opens a hole beneath another wizard, but closes it once he falls halfway through, cutting him in two. It is a extremely evil city, but I would only want to witness from a castle tower with a powerful eyepiece since many bystanders are killed during wizard duels.
What makes the fantasy world in your novel different from the regular world?
I love taking the real world and twisting it to my depraved needs and wants in a story. In God of Burden I used the real village of Dorking, England, and like any immature person, I laughed to myself and then thought it would be a great and ironic location for an evil entity to have a final battle in the 1300’s. Makes complete sense, doesn’t it? I then picked several other nearby towns that I wanted my characters to travel through and built them as I wanted them to look. For instance, in Westerham, I have the group visit a blacksmith as they approach the village. So, I made the blacksmith shop the first place they come across. I also went a little more extreme with the creativity and built a mountain chain, conjured by the demon in the story, in order for the characters to have a more difficult setting to traverse. At another spot in the novel, I create a structure, Lion’s Tower, which is located on an island in the middle of a lake. The tower is so tall and thin that it is a mystery to the characters on how it has remained vertical. Of course, the tower is not real, but created, as well as the lake in this instance. So, I use real places as a starting point, but I take full advantage from that spot forward of creating anything I desire.
What inspired this book?
My book, God of Burden, was the accidental outcome of a basic roleplaying (BRP) game that I was putting together for a group of friends. I love the challenge of making my own stories for games rather than follow one in a book, and I have done several that have taken me several months to complete, but this particular one really just felt like it should be more than a BRP story. I already had the outline, and from that point spent a year writing the book. I changed a few things, but each character is based partly on my friends’ characteristics. I was also lucky enough to have two English teachers as friends that provided all of my editing needs. And, on top of that, one of them, Cameron Ceradsky, is a great artist and provided thirty illustrations throughout the book.
What’s your process like when it comes to world-building? Any tips for other fantasy authors?
I really enjoy taking places in the real world and adding my own little details, or big details depending on the story. For instance, I am currently working on a new novel that involves a bounty hunter in the year 2023. He is currently staking out a guard that works at the San Quentin Petitionary in California. I needed a place for my character to observe the prison from a distance. So, I went to Google Earth and looked at the areas around the prison and found the perfect spot, San Rafael Bridge, and placed my character on it. After observing and finding the character he is supposed to kill, I created a little hydrogen gas station at the end of the bridge for him to stop and fill up. Creating a hydrogen gas station is not a huge change, but it still feels invigorating to create a building or a piece of landscape, small or big, that does not really exist in real life. Okay, fine, it makes me feel like God.
One major tip for other fantasy authors is to have fun building your worlds. If you are having fun, then there is a higher likelihood that your reader will enjoy it. Second, you really don’t have to describe your fantasy world in ultra detail, unless, of course you love doing that. It is a personal preference, but I really do not enjoy reading material in which an author describes a table for several pages (not fun to read, especially if it is not a key part of the story). Give the readers an idea of the world and let them fill in some of the details with their own brains.
A malevolent force has invaded the medieval English countryside.
The year is 1381. Four adventurers happen upon the dwelling of a horrific demon, discovering the legend of a celestial golden object and the powerful effect that it holds upon evil. Epic, the philosopher and self-appointed leader is joined by his eclectic group of friends: Sadeep, the quiet sneak and thief; Ambrosio, the grizzled and foul-mouthed soldier; and Thomas, the larger than life, scythe-wielding monk.
Abaddon, a fallen angel, seizes the village of Dorking and, along with his faithful minions, infiltrates the southern English landscape. Will the adventurers pursue the prized object for wealth or use it to abolish the evil decimating the land? Along their daring journey, the group encounters: sharp-tongued old women; friends and foes, small and large, and sometimes magical. They will not only question each other’s intentions, but their own intentions and faith. In victory or defeat, their lives will never be the same, but nonetheless their story will be epic.
Tell us about the short story collection your putting together and how others can contribute.
I am currently putting together a short story collection based off of major and minor characters in God of Burden. If anyone is interested in writing a short story for the collection, I will send them an electronic copy of the book just for reading today’s blog, and once they have read it, they can write a short story over a major or minor character. E-mail me at email@example.com if interested.
Where can readers find out more about you and your books?
Would you like to participate in our 7,7,7 challenge before you sign off?
Here’s 7 lines from a sci-fi/fantasy novel written by myself and Cameron Ceradsky, called Amnesty:
Amnesty Permits are now available for purchase. Who would you kill?
A short-statured man with a buzz cut hair style and a graying goatee drove his brand new Ford Firestorm into the small town of Yoakum, Texas amongst judging eyes. The citizens of this small town knew immediately what he was here to accomplish, but he really didn’t care. Guys like him did not have to hide in the recesses of the shadows anymore. It was perfectly legal for him to see his boss, pick up Amnesty permits, grab a cup of coffee, and then head to Houston and off twenty people. The government will look at it as a day’s work; and if anyone asks, yes, taxes will be paid on the earned income. Bozco was a regular, hard-working, average American now, save for the fact that all of his work for the year will be finished in a 24 hour period.
He pulled into the old office park, at the south end of town, and saw the red letters on the sign that read: #1 AMNESTY PERMITS.
The first of three installments of Amnesty is due to be released from SheDeadPress in August 2013 exclusively on Amazon. For more information you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and/or join me on twitter @shedeadpress.
Thanks, D.L. I will post my 7,7,7 excerpt tomorrow. Happy 4th of July, all!