I am very excited to be introducing R.J. Larson to you! She is a new voice in the CBA fantasy field, enticing the market with her exciting blend of Biblical fiction influence (she wrote a Biblical fiction series called "The Genesis Trilogy" under a different name) in her own invented world. Library Journal gave her first novel in the series, Prophet, a starred review, calling it: "Character-driven and suspenseful . . . outstanding YA speculative fiction . . ."
Her second novel, Judge, just released this last November, and book 3, King, is due to release this coming summer. So lots of fun reading for you to dive into.
Here is her bio, swiped from Amazon:
R. J. Larson is the author of numerous devotionals and is suspected of eating chocolate and potato chips for lunch while writing. She lives in Colorado with her husband and their two sons. The Books of the Infinite series marks her debut in the fantasy genre.
She is with us today for a fun interview, so I hope you will enjoy a chance to get to know this new author . . . and be sure to pepper her with questions and encouraging comments at the end!
I love storytellers! But it is nice to be able to hide behind a pen and paper, and have time to edit and perfect, isn't it? :)
That is very cool. What an inspiring story to other young novelists as well! Fun to see how the small seeds from which an entire novel--and entire series--can grow.
R.J. Larson: I love all of my characters. They’re all my babies, good and ‘bad’, so I had to think about this question for a few days. Kien, I think, might be my favorite. His humor, his calculating ways, and his sense of honor as he strives to follow his Creator—and Ela—have been a joy. I pieced together many of his traits while watching and listening to the guys in my life. (Guys, if you’re reading this, don’t take this as a cue to blindside me with more adventures. Warn me first?)
I'll bet your guys get a big kick out of reading your works and seeing themselves cropping up here and there in unexpected places. "Hey, look! It's me!"
What inspires your work? Where do you turn when you need a renewal of inspiration?
R.J. Larson: Did I mention the guys in my life? I think writing is my way of dealing with a lifetime of being the token female. Also…I love my Creator! He inspires me and speeds me onward in work and in life. I’d like to think that my love for Him is lived out by my characters. On the rare occasions when I feel “blocked” I pray. And I walk, read, watch movies, listen to music, visit with others and pray some more.
I’ve also been known to scrub the kitchen floor—once!—when I couldn’t face a particularly wrenching scene.
Scrub the floor?!?!? That is some desperation. I'll bet that wrenching scene turned out pretty epic as a result, though.
So, floor-scrubbing aside, w
hat are your favorite and least favorite parts of the writing process?
R.J. Larson: My favorite part is when I’m lost in a scene. The words are flowing, the characters are interacting and living, and the whole writing process becomes a realm unto itself—every writer’s dream!
My least favorite part of the writing process is…. Hmm. *Stumped.*
If you were forced to pick a single favorite author, who would it be?
R.J. Larson: Donita K. Paul, because I enjoy her forthright feedback and her cozy fantasy plotlines—unless she’s writing about the Grawl, who is insidious enough to give me nightmares. When I read Dragonspell, I felt like a child again, ready for adventures in a fantasy world. Also, Donita has an amazing critique-eye; it’s enough to make me green-eyed with envy.
Donita is pretty much the queen of current CBA fantasy. She certainly opened up doors for the rest of us fantasy lovers.
I know King is the next book due out. Can you tell us any exciting tidbits about it?
R.J. Larson: The action sequences just about did me in! Somehow, I always ended up writing them at midnight, then doubting myself. I’d fire off the finished scenes to my fourth brother, Joe, who fences and excels in martial arts—in addition to working in law enforcement. He (typical mindgame-playing fightmaster) would read the scenes and answer cryptically. “Yes.” “Keep going.” And, most disgusting of all, “There are many ways to skin a cat.” Augh!!! I wanted to reach through the email and attempt to shake Joe, which would have been an epic fail. I could almost hear him laughing.
However, in the last third of King, when my characters are fighting for their lives—a series of fights, actually—I sent Joe a detailed list of the weapons, props, terrain, motives, and goals, with a desperate plea: “What am I not seeing? It’s there, but it’s late and I’m too tired and too close to the scene.”
That time Joe actually offered advice, and his (brilliant!) answer went directly into Kien’s self-defense tactics. I’ll allow readers to guess the scene. Meanwhile, I owe my fightmaster a dinner out.
I'll bet Joe is tickled pink to have his expertise go into your fiction! I'm sure your male readers will appreciate the authenticity behind it too.
What are you actively writing right now?
R.J. Larson: Right now, I’m taking a break from writing, as ordered by my family. The ‘rest’ is driving me nuts! I’m repaying them by baking and cooking and nagging them all. It won’t be long before they send me to my computer again—just as I’ve planned.
Enjoy the break while it lasts . . . I'm sure the creativity is building up to bursting point!
Thank you so much for taking the time to feature here today. I'm sure all of my readers enjoyed learning more about you and your work!
You all can find R.J. Larson on her website: www.rjlarsonbooks.com/
She's also on Pintrest for you pinners out there: http://pinterest.com/rjlarsonbooks/
And, of course, you should like her facebook page, under her writing name, R.J. Larson (author).
Now, for the exciting part . . . the giveaway! Ms. Larson has generously offered the winner of this giveaway a choice between either Prophet or Judge. So go ahead and use the Rafflecopter options below to get your name entered! And be sure to thank Ms. Larson for her time today.
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0cd5241/" rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway