Monday, April 11, 2011

Jeffrey Poole author of The Bakkian Chronicles interview


Bakkian Chronicles, Book I - The Prophecy


When did you decide to become a writer?

I distinctly remember the first story I ever wrote when I was little.  I was in the third or fourth grade, I believe.  I always got a kick out of writing, and up until about ten years ago, I didn't think much about it. 
One day I was talking with my wife, and somehow the subject of writing came up.  She encouraged me to develop the story and write it out.  Now, it took me a good long while just because I worked on it whenever I was sent to another city/state for my job (senior computer tech - I installed computer networks all across the country).
Not liking half-finished projects, two years ago I decided to finish it.  I'd say it was then that I caught the writing bug full time.  Man, that took a long time to answer.   lol


If you are not a full time writer what do you do to pay the bills?

I'm a freelance Microsoft certified computer consultant.  Loosely translated, I go around and fix computers.  Repair, troubleshooting, networking, etc.  You name it, I fix it.


What was your route to Indie authoring?

Like many authors, I looked into various publishers.  Practically all wanted either an agent, or at least a year of your time before they'd give you an answer or not.  I've done the research.  99.99% get negative responses. 
I've heard about the Print-on-Demand services, and even these appeared to want serious $$$ to turn your manuscript into a feasible book.  Long story short, I discovered Lulu.com and found that if you knew what you were doing, and could get your manuscript exactly how you wanted it to appear, then the cost was minimal.  Then I found Smashwords.  It was just easier to do it myself.  Plus, being a computer tech, I was very familiar with just about all word processing programs.

Any tips for your fellow Indie authors?

Tips.  Hmmm.  I'd say that if you have an active imagination, and you have ideas bouncing around in your head, write it out.  Put it down on paper (so to speak).  Read what you write.  Can you visualize the scene in your head?  Make it believable. 


What served as your inspiration for Bakkian Chronicles, Book 1:  The Prophecy?

I've always had this story in my head.  Always the big "what if?"  What if some lucky guy inherits a house.  This house has a set of unusual doors and are accidentally tripped.  You go through and are stranded.  What if once you're in this strange place you're mistaken for someone else?  What if someone you don't know now entrusts their only son to your care?  How do you get home?
I had all these questions bouncing around and I remember talking with my wife one day.  She was also thinking about writing a murder mystery story.  She asked me if I ever thought about writing anything.  Before I knew it I had a list of chapters written down and essentially what happens in each chapter all plotted out.  For the most part, that's the outline that I stuck to. 


What other work do you have available?

This is my first book.  I am close to finishing the second book in the Bakkian Chronicles series.  I also have a completely different book lined up that I'll write next that will be a fantasy set several hundred years ago in America's past.  No monsters, or mythical beings.  Just two boys who become friends.  I'll leave it at that.


What sites is your work available on?

Let's see.  Obviously on Amazon (Kindle and coming soon, the print edition), Kobobooks, Diesel Ebooks, Sony Ebooks, the Apple iBook store, Smashwords, Lulu.com, and Whitcouls, I believe.


Are you currently working on anything new and if so when can we expect to see it?

I am hard at work on Bakkian Chronicles, Book II:  Insurrection.  Still going to be light-hearted.  Several new characters are introduced, including my first villain.  He thinks he's tough, he thinks he's invincible.  Trust me, he's not.  :)


Are there any authors that you really look up to?

Some of my favorite authors are Dan Brown, Michael Crichton, Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child, to name a few.  I really like the "Agent Pendergast" series that Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child pen together.  A bit gory at times, but it's good.   Anything Dan Brown does is abosolutely fantastic.
**hangs head**   Yeah, I like J.K. Rowling, too. 


What do you see the biggest challenge in being an Indie author as?

Well, if you're trying to be a serious writer, then the challenge is to become noticed.  One of the best ways to get noticed is to try and get some people to review your work.  All I can say is keep writing and keep sending out coupons, requests, promotions, etc.  You, as the author, have to be constantly promoting yourself whenever and wherever you can.


Have you ever been published in any magazines or any national publication?

No, I have not.


Do you have a homepage/blog/twitter/facebook etc... that fans can follow your progress or contact you at?

Knew you were going to ask that.  I do have a website.  It's at:  www.Lentari.com, however I haven't done anything with it yet.  Hopefully by the time this is posted I'll have it developed and in place.  How pathetic is that?  I create websites left and right.  I'm a computer tech.  I know all about domain registration, hosting, html creation, etc.  Have I done anything with it?  **sigh**  Nope, not yet.  It's on my to do list.  :)


What is your favorite book/series?

I have so many.  Let's see.  I really love the Robert Langdon series from Dan Brown.  The Agent Pendergast series from Preston Child is really good.  I reluctantly admit I love the Harry Potter series.  I love a good thriller.  Piers Anthony has several series out that I really like. 


Are there any specific sites that you visit for advice or inspiration?

This might sound cheesy to some, but if I ever need advice or inspiration, all I have to do is simply talk to my wife.  She's my inspiration and quite frankly the smartest person I know.  She's helped maintain continuity, checked grammar, and caught mistakes that have slipped by me and the friend of mine that also helps with editing.


Where did the word Bakkian come from?


The word "Bakkian" pretty much came from the depths of my imagination.  I wanted a unique word that couldn't be found at all in use anywhere.  Believe it or not, the word sprang to mind instantly.  After doing a quick Google search to see if it existed anywhere, I was rather pleased to see that it was a word no one used and it wasn't a proper noun.




Why is "wizards be damned" the commonly used curse in Lentari?  Is there a 
backstory?


"Wizards be damned" came into play as I was searching for some type of curse which could be uttered without making the overall tone too serious.  The wizards are all powerful in Lentari, so naturally when something doesn't go the way you want, the first thing you do is assume the wizards are conspiring against you.  It was important to me to keep the book light-hearted, so I made sure whenever the phrase was used, the scene wasn't too intense.


Which character do you most identify with and why?


Me being the computer tech, it would be Steve.  I modeled his appearance, manner of speach, and behaviors all based on my own.  I've had family members and friends read the book and tell me how easily they could picture me in the role.  I told them that's a good thing, 'cause that's how I wanted it to come across.  Steve is based on me, and Sarah is based on my wife.  The interesting thing, though, is that my wife later told me that Sarah is essentially my interpretation of how my wife talks, behaves, and so on.  And I guess I wasn't exactly accurate.  Want to know what she told me?  That she wasn't as nice as Sarah!   Made me laugh.  :)


If you were a Lentarian what jhorun would you like to have?


What jhorun would I like to have?  As much fun as it would be to be a fire thrower, or maybe someone who is immune to dragons (should they happen to exist), I'd have to go with Sarah's teleportation ability.  Seriously, how much fun would that be?   With a proverbial blink of one's eyes, you could be anywhere you wanted in no time at all!   Want to visit Stonehenge?  No problem.  What about the Egyptian pyramids in the Giza plateau?  Piece of cake!


What can we expect from book 2?  When can we expect to see it?


Bakkian Chronicles, Book II:  Insurrection.  We get introduced to the northern kingdom of Ylani, and how a dark wizard there is bent on overthrowing the local king and playing both Ylani and Lentari against each other.  On top of which, he is absolutely obsessed with getting his hands on Mikal.


I've gone on record to say that I'm not a big fan of dark fantasy, but I've since learned I enjoy a good "tanned" fantasy (that was for you, Robert!).  Yes, this wizard is evil and mean, but in essence, he's just a school bully who throws temper tantrums when he doesn't get his way. 


Book II sees an event transpire to lure young Mikal back to his homeland.  Naturally the good-hearted Nohrin volunteer to help as much as possible.  We'll see Sarah's sister, Annie, mentioned briefly in the first book, step up and play a significant part in the second. 


Since I've always had a fascination with dragons, I deliberately brought back one of the dragons from the first book.  A rather unusuaul bond between dragon and human develops as a result.  And, since I'm such of fan of dragons, you won't find any evil dragons in my books.  :)


Let's see, what else?  We get some answers to questions that have been plaguing Steve and Sarah.  For example, why does their jhorun work on their home world?  How is it that Steve can use one of the power crystals that has been charged by someone else?   And most importantly, why is the dark wizard so fascinated with Mikal?


As for when the book will be released, I'm hoping to have the entire story completed in a couple of weeks, and then the editing can begin.  I've been associating with a couple of authors who have been helping me with the editing, giving pointers on what not to do, what not to use, etc.  So I'm not sure how long the editing will take, but I hope to release the ebook within the next couple of months.


It is unusual in fantasy for humans to have unique magical characteristics.  Why did 
you choose to grant the jhorun?


The jhorun given to Steve's grandparents was given by Shardwyn as a favor to the king and queen.  They had proven their loyalty to Lentari time and time again, so the jhorun was given as a reward.  As for Steve and his wife, their jhorun was not granted.  It was........   :)   Yes, you'll find out in book 2.


Will we see any more races in the world of lentari?


Several other races put in an appearance in book 2.  Trolls, for one.  Nasty sons of b*****s.  Mortal enemies to the trolls?  The dragons.  The dragons view trolls like we would view cockroaches.  Although in our case, the cockroaches are smarter.


Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions and I wish the best in your writing career.


My pleasure!   I appreciate you taking the time to read the book, review it, and then ask me about how it came to be!


1 comment:

  1. Just wanted to say thanks for doing the interview and posting it on here! I do appreciate it!

    I've read all the other interviews thus far, and to see my own was a thrilling experience!

    Thanks again for the awesome review and words of encouragement!

    ReplyDelete