I'm so glad you could join me today Anthony! Let's dive right in, shall we? When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I have always enjoyed tinkering with tales, right from an early age at primary school. If I wasn’t reading stories, I was writing them. The first story I can recall writing was a huge gunfight between the rebel alliance and some storm troopers, aboard a space freighter….hey, it was 1977 after all, so I had a serious influence at that time J
From then on, I always wanted to and I wrote plenty of stories, but only for myself. It wouldn’t be until my late teens when I started to dream about becoming an author and would actually let people read them.
Oh wow, that's a pretty epic sound first story! What has been the most difficult part about being a writer?
As you probably know yourself Lindsay, it’s actually finding the time to write. We lead such busy lives these days and I still currently hold down a full-time job - so setting aside time to write is often difficult.
Also, as an emerging author, and with the self-publishing boom, it’s very hard to get noticed, to stand out amongst all the other writers seeking to find their niche, their readership. I seem to spend more time trying to promote my first novel at the moment, than I do writing the sequel.
Yes, I know that problem well! There are never enough hours in the day to get everything I need done. Who are your favorite authors?
My favorite author is the sadly departed, British Fantasy writer David Gemmell. I am also keen on the work of JRR Tolkien, Terry Brooks and Robert Harris. I am currently finding a shift in my tastes and working in a library, I am discovering new authors, which is wonderful. I have recently been reading a lot of historical fiction and have enjoyed tales from CJ Sansom and Stephen Saylor.
I've never heard of David Gemmell before. I'll definitely be adding him to my TBR pile. Love Terry Brooks! What authors inspire you?
As a child, JRR Tolkien with The Fellowship of the Ring…but my real inspiration is without question David Gemmell. I have never read an author since, who could create such wonderful imagery; allow me to visualize his expertly crafted fight scenes and to journey through his novels with so many memorable characters. When he died in 2006, I felt bereft and lost my way with my reading. It was then that I started to think about perhaps trying to write myself and, maybe one day, have my own work published.
Ok, now I really want to read him lol. I'm sold. Do you like to plan your scenes out or do you just wing it?
I have the nucleus of a tale, with key moments planned…well, scribbled down on bits of paper (to transfer to a notebook). But I like to see where my story takes me, so I can enjoy the adventure as much as the reader hopefully will.
That's sort of how I do it as well. I used to think I was the only one who approached writing that way, but I'm finding it's actually pretty common. What type of books do you like to read?
Fantasy, Historical (Fiction & Non-fiction), the occasional horror novel and, well anything that sounds appealing to me.
I've always loved fantasy :) What do you like to do in your free time?
Try and find some more free time J
My fiancée Amy and I love the outdoors, so we are always out exploring Wales, where we live. It is such a beautiful place, full of plenty of inspiration for my writing and Wales also has plenty of my favorite places to visit, castles.
So jealous you get to go explore Wales whenever you want! It's on my list of places I plan to visit some day. Where is your favorite place to vacation?
Apart from Wales, the Peak District and Lake District in England - further afield, a city would be Venice and a country, as a whole, would undoubtedly be India.
*Wistful sigh* All of those places sound so lovely. Do you have any special holiday traditions?
Not really. Just to explore as much of the place I am visiting, so I can and immerse myself in its history and culture.
You can never go wrong doing that :) Let's switch gears a bit. Why did you choose to write a medieval style fantasy?
It’s funny, but the tale I am telling would most likely fit into any genre. I chose fantasy for my trilogy, however, because fantasy was what got me into reading as a child. Despite being a fan as a youngster of all things Sci-fi, I never felt drawn to it as I grew up. My discovery of Fighting Fantasy Game Books, Dungeons and Dragons and numerous other role-playing games in my teens steered me down this path. The medieval style comes from my love of that period in history and the heroic style of writing comes from the influence of David Gemmell’s work.
That's so awesome and now I'm even more excited to read your books! Hopefully I'll be able to sit down and check them out now that life is calming down a bit. What has been the most fun about working on your books?
Without doubt the most enjoyable part has been creating the world, The Four Vales, shaping the land in the reader’s imagination and then, filling it with the people that live there.
World-building is a blast, molding it to be just the way you want it. Love it. What has been the hardest scene for you to write?
The hardest thing, to date, was the first six pages of chapter four. It was an important one for me, one I felt I had to get right and I lost my work, halfway through writing it. I had been so happy with it and having to re-write it, I never thought that I could replicate what I had written. I guess it was meant to be, as it is often mentioned by people who have read the novel J
The hardest scene, I expect, I still have to write (Ooh! Slight teaser there!)
*Pout* Meanie for teasing us lol. Do you have any favorite characters? If so, why?
Yes! Without any spoilers, it has to be Arillion. If there ever was a rogue who has the charm, the wit and the nastiness, all rolled up into one, volatile, cunning package, it has to be him. He was tremendous fun to write about in the first novel and on so many different levels.
I am also fond of several other characters in my novel, many of them just minor ones…particularly a character called Cornelius.
Rogues are one of my favorite character types ever! Now I really need to read this book :) How did you come up with the premise for Whispers of a Storm?
I was in a shop one day and down the next aisle, I overheard two people talking about something I shouldn’t have been listening to…and it started to make me think. “What would I have done if I had overheard something really important? Who could I tell and, who would I be able to trust?”
Those were the first seeds of the idea, again, a brief sentence noted on a scrap of paper.
That is one of the best ways to come up with a story. Although now I'm dying to know what you overheard lol. I love when authors create their own worlds. Can you tell us more about Four Vales?
The Four Vales is a medieval-styled land, a lot like I would have imagined Medieval Britain to have been like, but without any royalty to rule its people. Across the mountain ranges to the North, the Great Divide, there is a vast land of tundra, inhabited by tribesmen, known as the Reven. Since their invading armies were crushed, fifty years prior, the Four Vales have been peaceful and prosperous, under the guidance and stewardship of the High Duke. People, in general, are happy with their lot in life, pleased with the peace and coin that they have in their pockets, the food they have on their table.
The politicians, the lord and the ladies would have you believe that everything is wonderful, and for the most of it, they would be right. But the land is still a wild and dangerous place, however. As in any society, there are always those that crave for more than they have; are determined to have it, no matter the cost and The Four Vales is no different. Outlaws rob people in the North, forever hunted by the High Duke and his men, smugglers trade in illegal goods, people still get murdered over the simplest of things and poverty hides away in the shadows in the darkest, poorest sectors of the capital.
I'm so loving how this world sounds. I have a feeling I'll be able to completely lose myself in it. Why did you choose to center your story around a stonemason and a noblewoman?
I wanted my two main characters in Book One, to be from different sides of Fate’s coin. The stonemason, Khadazin, is an immigrant to the four Vales; a man shunned by those around him, who has few friends, few things to love about his life. The Noblewoman, however, has everything and the contrast between the two stories, intrinsically linked of course, hopefully makes for an exciting, interesting read.
The ‘Whispers’ in the title, refers to the conversation that the stonemason overhears.
Every single one of your answers makes me want to read this more! So glad I'm finally going to have the time to sit down and read it. Whispers of a Storm is part of The Storm Trilogy. What will happen in the next book, Shadows of a Storm, and when can we expect it?
As the title suggest, shadows will start to lengthen over The Four Vales and more people will become drawn into the plot that is unfolding around them. There will be a great deal of danger for anyone involved and nobody is safe. Expect a near-breathless read for the sequel, one that will build up to a climax that will have you screaming at me to finish the final installment. I am hoping that Shadows will be out by April 2013…at the latest.
Oh yay, I love hearing that!! We are unfortunately almost out of time. Tell us, what's next for you?
Once the trilogy is finished, I plan to continue with a modern thriller I started writing several years ago. It’s currently three chapters deep and I have plenty of research to do for that. I won’t go back to it, however, until The Storm Trilogy is completed, as I don’t want to divide my time between the two tales.
That's probably a good idea to focus in on a single story, but I can't wait to find out more about the other project :) I'm impatient if you couldn't tell lol. Before you go, is there anything else you want your readers to know?
I just want to thank everyone who has read Whispers of a Storm, so far. Have taken the time out to let me know how much they have enjoyed it. I wrote the novel, not aimed at genre fans, but for anyone who just enjoys reading a good story. The feedback I have had so far, pleases me beyond any words. A typical response is “I would have never tried that type of novel before, but…”
Thank you so much for stopping by Anthony! It was a true pleasure getting to meet you :)
Whispers of a Storm...Buy it Now!
The inhabitants of the Four Vales have enjoyed over fifty years of relative peace, since its armies defeated the Reven Hordes threatening their homeland. Under the fair rule and guidance of the high duke, its people have thrived and prospered, free from the shadows of war. The Vales are peaceful and the capital city Karick is quiet. But in the gardens of the high duke's keep, dark plots are whispered and fell deeds being planned. A humble stonemason falls asleep whilst working in the gardens and upon waking, inadvertently overhears a conversation that plunges him deep into the heart of the coming storm. A young noblewoman is to be kidnapped and used as a pawn in this dark game... Whispers of a Storm follows the stonemason and noblewoman's fortunes as they unwittingly become involved in a dangerous game of survival, as they try to find out what dark storm is about to break out across the Four Vales. Who would seek to unsettle this harmony? Why would they want to? How can the stonemason and noblewoman discover what is going to happen and more importantly, expose those behind the plot, before it is too late. A tale of political intrigue and high adventure, Book One of The Storm Trilogy follows the fortunes of two individuals, whose personal journey of survival may yet help to save and shape the future of their homeland.
Meet Anthony Lavisher!
Anthony was born in Berkshire, England has always loved writing stories. After many years of enjoying other authors works, has finally decided to try and give something back to the literary world. From an early age, since reading The Lord of the Rings, he has been inspired to write his own stories. He states that his favourite author is David Gemmell and his style of writing has been inspired by the sadly missed author. Anthony lives in the United Kingdom with his fiancee Amy and Bruce the cat. He is currently working on 'Shadows of a Storm', the sequel to his first novel.
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