WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – Kenneth Rogers Jr.

081Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

Today I welcome Kenneth Rogers Jr.

imgres-Kenneth RogersKenneth has been living and teaching in Baltimore City since 2010 with his wife, Sarah, and two daughters, Mirus and Amare. In that time he has taught 6-10th grade English in Baltimore, Maryland. Kenneth earned a masters degree in education from Johns Hopkins School of Education, the number one ranked school of education in the country. Since growing up and moving from Peoria, Illinois, he graduated from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio, in 2008 with a dual degree in Political Science and English, he has written and published five novels. Those six novels are: Thoughts in Italics, a book of short stories that range from speculative to science fiction; Writing in the Margins, a novel that intertwines the characters of Jack Mueller and John Rubaker that makes the reader question what is reality and fiction; Sequence, a dystopian science fiction novel telling the story of Andrea Remus and Thomas Charon through each memory they are forced to relive as they are downloaded in a computer known as the Pandora Complex to save the human race; The Diary of Oliver Lee, the first in a young adult trilogy that tells the story of Oliver Lee, his ability to “stream” stories from the minds of those around him, and his search for the first couple he ever “streamed”; Love and Fear, book two in the Liturian trilogy which tells the story of Kevin and his continued search for Oliver Lee and answers to his possible future and fate; Raped Black Male: A Memoir which tells Kenneth’s story of what it means to be a male rape survivor, overcoming stereotypes of what it means to be black, and male, and that men can’t be raped; Heroes, Villains, and Healing: A Guide for Male Survivors Using DC Superheroes and Villains, which uses comic books and back research to help male survivors of child sexual abuse understand and heal from their childhood sexual trauma.

Wolf: You use comic book superheroes in your book Heroes, Villains, and Healing. If you could have a super power, what would it be?

Kenneth: My superpower would be to mimic the superpowers of other people. This was Peter’s power in Heroes (before they ruined it) and I thought it was really cool. Either this, or have the intellect to know and understand all the things that happened in Lost.

Wolf: If you had to pick a weapon, what would it be and why?

Kenneth: I would choose a pen because I’m not a very good fighter. I have asthma, but I’m really good at running away. If I can’t run, then I would attempt to change the mind of my opponent using my words. It may take a while, but it’s more effective than going fist-to-cuffs.

Wolf: Those are wise words. Do you consider yourself a cat person or dog person?

Kenneth: Cat person. I have two cats; Ace and Blonde

Wolf: Here’s an off the wall question for you. The world is about to end. What is the first thing you do?

Kenneth: For me, the routine of my day would not change. I don’t have any regrets or things I wish I had done. I would spend the remaining time with my wife and kids.

Wolf: What story are you working on now?

Kenneth: The third and final book in my young adult trilogy Chronicles of the Last Liturian.

Wolf: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Kenneth: I like to play with my daughters, Mirus and Amare. I love making my wife laugh. I enjoy reading, running, meditating, and teaching.

Wolf: Thanks for visiting. Learn more about Kenneth and his writing by following the links below.

www.lostimaginations.com
Twitter handle: @liturian
http://sbpra.com/kennethrogersjr/

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Keep Your Kids Reading! Reading is a Good Thing!

Stop and smell the paper. Reading does mind good.

Writing for the Whole Darn Universe

reading gragh

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WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – Grady P. Brown

081Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

Give a big wolf welcome to Grady P. Brown

Grady 1Grady is a science fiction author who is diagnosed with high functioning autism. He is a connoisseur of the science fiction, fantasy, and superhero genres. In addition, he is an autism ambassador, hoping to demonstrate the potential benefits one can gain from being autistic. As a writer, Grady P. Brown utilizes his autism to visualize the story taking place inside of his head like a movie. Also, he has a very strong memory, allowing him to store information about his characters and stories in his brain as though it were a computer hard-drive. He is also a passionate pit bull lover and owns a pair of sweet and loving pit bulls named Wally and Fitch.

Wolf: I think I know the answer to this, but I’ll ask anyway. Do you consider yourself a cat person, or a dog person?Grady 2

Grady: My family has four dogs: three pit bulls and one miniature poodle. So I would say dog person.

Wolf: Clearly. If you could be any animal in the universe, what would it be and why?

Grady: I would be a dragon because dragons are the incarnations of creation and destruction and the link between gods and men. As they say in Game of Thrones: “dragons are fire made flesh and fire is power!” Also, I am a devout dragon fanatic and have been for as long as I could remember.

Wolf: Dragons are very cool, but some can be dangerous. If you had to pick a weapon, what would it be and why?

Grady: I would pick the sword in my fantasy book, Numen the Slayer. The sword’s name is Gramfyre after the legendary sword of the Norse hero Sigurd. Gramfyre’s double-edged blade is pitch black with ancient runes engraved along its fuller. Its cruciform crossguard and fishtail-shaped pommel would be made of gold and decorated with rubies. Finally, the grip (which is big enough to be held in either one hand or two hands) would be made out of polished dragon ivory. The sword has the power to turn its wielder into a powerful warrior with the speed, strength, and fury of ten men and make them immune to physical pain. However, this power must be fueled by its wielder’s spiritual energy, which can be costly. I would choose this weapon because it is the Sword of Power of the Magnus Dynasty and whoever possesses it has the power to become emperor of the Gradaia Empire (which is as big as the combined land of the British Empire at its zenith).

Wolf: Sometimes authors are mean to their characters, what about you?

Grady: In Numen the Slayer, I would say the meanest thing I did to my characters was have them be cannibalized by other characters.

Wolf: Eek! Describe a meal you would be served while visiting another world. (Hopefully not someone you know.)

Grady: If I was visiting the Imperial Palace in Chrysos from Numen the Slayer, I would be having quite a big festive meal fit for an emperor. Roasted chicken with herbs, a saddle of spit-roasted lamb, fresh salads served with oranges or edible flowers, roasted turkey, a sweet meat pie served with figs, carrots, and artichokes. That will only be the first course of the meal. The second course would consist of gelatin made from deer antler, a custard tart topped with pomegranate seeds, and sugar wafers. For drinks, there would be wine marinated with sugar, spices, and gold.

Wolf: Sounds like an exquisite feast. What is the strangest food you’ve ever eaten?

Grady: I would say iced milk with honey because it was a drink I never had before. I did not know what to expect, but in the end, it was a healthy balance between sweet and creamy while having a spicy aftertaste.

Wolf: You’ve just been turned into a plant. Describe yourself.

Grady: I would be a tree that is thousands of years old. My bark is silvery while my leaves are golden. Hanging from my branches would be pearly fruit that opens the mind of whoever eats it.

Wolf: While walking in the woods you come across…

Grady: I come across a slimy creature that lurks in the dark trees. Its appearance would be concealed, but its putrid smell and sickening snarls can be detected.

Wolf: What would you do if you were immortal?

Grady: If I were immortal, I would keep writing and publishing stories until the end of time. Also, since Disney will be cranking out more Star Wars stories, I will keep watching and reading Star Wars films, books, and comics forever!

Wolf: Which of your characters is your favorite?

Grady: I would say Numen Magnus from Numen the Slayer because he is the most complex character I ever created, and he is a combination between my favorite historical and mythical characters.

Wolf: What story are you working on now?

Grady: I am working on the sequel of Numen the Slayer, which will revolve around Numen’s children and their feud with House Sylva and quest for the Imperial Throne.

Untitled copy grady

 

https://gradypbrown.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/GPBFantasyBooks/
https://www.facebook.com/TheYoungGuardians/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/11309703.Grady_P_Brown
https://www.amazon.com/Grady-P.-Brown/e/B002YBCBBO/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1507343486&sr=8-1
https://twitter.com/guardiansyoung

 

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The Privatization of Star Trek

Nancy says it well. This pay to view decision is also why I haven’t bothered watching the pilot. There are plenty of other things to watch that aren’t going to cost me more money.

Nancy M. Griffis

When I first heard that CBS was going to make a new Trek tv show, I was thrilled. I’m a huge Trekkie. Janeway is my personal hero, Picard the man I most admire, and Spock a soulmate. I followed all the casting announcements like crazy. I admire all the showrunners and writers and actors involved.

Then I heard that CBS was going to air it solely on their online streaming service. I was puzzled at first, because that would limit the number of fans and advertising dollars. Why would CBS do that to themselves and the show? Didn’t they want to give it the best possible chance at success? We all know that just because it’s Trek, doesn’t mean it’s always going to be a huge hit.

I didn’t think about it much because it hadn’t even aired yet. Wasn’t even close, at that point. I figured CBS would…

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GIVE THE GIFT OF READING

Looking for that perfect holiday gift?

book gift jpg

I’ll be signing copies of Star Touched

on

Sunday, November 12, 2017

at the

Northern Virginia Christmas Market

from

10:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Booth #364

Dulles Expo and Convention Center

Chantilly, VA

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WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – Dianne Salerni

081Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

Photo credit: Robert SalerniThis week I welcome DIANNE K. SALERNI. Dianne is the author of the Eighth Day MG fantasy series, described by Kirkus as “an exciting blend of Arthurian legend and organized crime.” The first book in the series, The Eighth Day, has been on state lists in Maine, Florida, Georgia, Virginia, Minnesota, and Indiana. Dianne has also published two YA historical novels.  The Caged Graves is a Junior Library Guild Selection and has been nominated for reader’s choice awards in Vermont, South Carolina, and Pennsylvania. We Hear the Dead was the inspiration for a short film, The Spirit Game, which premiered at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.

Wolf: Authors tend to be very hard on the people in their stories. What is the meanest thing you’ve ever done to your characters?

Dianne: I’d have to pick what I did to my main character Jax in The Inquisitor’s Mark, the second book in the Eighth Day series. I had him going up against an enemy with the power to manipulate other people’s memories. I recall sending an outline of my plot to my critique partner and her remarking that this seemed too powerful an enemy for Jax. “How will you prevent them from using their power on him?”

Then it occurred to me, “I won’t.” I immediately started revising my plan for the story so that Jax is overpowered and his memory is manipulated. They make him believe that he hates his two best friends – and he promptly betrays them and delivers them to their mortal enemies. I called this version of my main character “Bad Jax,” and it ended up being the best part of the whole story.

But it was a pretty mean thing to do to Jax, who had to live with what he’d done.

Wolf: That is mean. Jax’s enemy could manipulate memories. If you could have a super power, what would it be?

Dianne: I’d choose the ability to command people to do what I say. Like Kilgrave in Jessica Jones and Riley Pendragon in The Eighth Day. But don’t worry. I’d only use my power to make my daughters complete their chores in a timely manner.

Wolf: Good to hear. Do you consider yourself a cat person, or a dog person?

Dianne: A cat person, for the most part. I’ve always had cats, and for a big part of my life, I was kind of afraid of dogs. Then we got Sorcia, our big lovable German Shepherd. She changed my view of dogs – and I’m not afraid of them anymore.

Wolf: Glad you got over your fear. I can’t imagine life without a dog. Which of your characters is your favorite?

Dianne: My favorite character is Riley, Jax’s guardian in The Eighth Day. At the beginning of the book, Jax hates Riley, believing him to be a no-good slacker. But when Jax learns about Riley’s past, finds out who he is and how far he’ll go to keep the people under his protection safe, everything changes. Developing their brotherly relationship was one of my favorite parts of writing the series.

Furthermore, Riley invented himself. When I started the first draft of The Eighth Day, I had different plans for this character. But he took control of himself from page one. This is who I am, he told me. Oh, and I need tattoos and a motorcycle, thanks. I know most people think that authors control their characters. Well, sometimes characters control themselves, and a wise author listens to them.

Wolf: So true. Let’s play a game. While walking in the woods you come across…

Dianne: Something spooky. Maybe it’s an old, forgotten cemetery, or an abandoned house that’s slowly falling apart. Definitely something that would look perfect on the cover of a mystery book!

Wolf: There is a door at the end of a dark, damp corridor. You hear rumbling. What do you do?

Dianne: It depends on the lighting. Is the corridor brightly lit? Then I might walk down the corridor to the door and listen more carefully before peeking inside. However, if the corridor is lighted by one bare bulb or a flickering fluorescent light – no way. I walk the other way fast.

Wolf: What story are you working on now?

Dianne: I’m working on two things simultaneously. One is a rewrite of a manuscript I finished earlier this year, which I describe as Dark Shadows for the MG crowd. It was originally written in third person, past tense, and I’m rewriting it in first person, present tense. But, earlier this week, I also started a first draft of a Shiny New Idea. I’m utterly pantstering this one, so I only have a vague idea of where it’s going. But there are carnivorous fairies in it.

Wolf: Carnivorous fairies, oh my. I’m almost afraid to ask. What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Dianne: I love to read, of course. Mostly MG, YA, and adult thrillers. I like a good Netflix binge. My most recent was re-watching Crazy Ex-Girlfriend as a refresher before Season 3 starts. I like to ski, and travel, and cook with my husband.

Wolf: Thanks for stopping by. To connect with Dianne, check out these links.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DianneKSalerni/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/diannesalerni
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/dksalerni/
Website: http://diannesalerni.com/

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WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – Alan Zendell

081

Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

This week I welcome Alan Zendell

AlanCreateSpaceAlan Zendell spent more than forty years as a scientist, aerospace engineer, software consultant, database developer, and government analyst, writing really boring stuff like proposals, technical papers, reports, business letters, and policy memoranda.  But trapped inside him all that time were stories that needed telling and ideas that needed expression, so with encouragement and cajoling from a loving baby sister he plunged into fiction.

Since then, he has written mostly science and extrapolative fiction, the genre he loved since he was nine.  But his stories are about more than aliens and technical marvels.  He creates strong, three-dimensional characters a reader can care about, because it’s people and the way they live and love that are important.  It’s the things they believe in and how much they’re willing to invest to preserve them that make a story worth telling.  It’s convincing interactions and well-researched credible plots that make a story worth reading.

And, of course, like any writer, Alan loves having an audience.

Wolf: If you could be any animal in the universe, what would it be and why?

Alan: A dog, because everyone would love me, and I really love to be loved.

Wolf: What is the strangest food you’ve ever eaten?

Alan: Ginger marinated chicken feet.

Wolf: What is the nicest thing you’ve ever done to your characters?

Alan: Having lost lose lover find each after years of searching.

Wolf: What is the meanest thing you’ve ever done to your characters?

Alan: Making those long-lost lovers believe they’d never be together again.

Wolf: You’ve just been turned into a plant. Describe yourself.

Alan: I’m a giant redwood tree. But since I hate being stuck in one spot, I’ve been given the ability to relocate.

Wolf: Do you consider yourself a cat person, or a dog person?

Alan: A dog person.

Wolf: While walking in the woods you come across…

Alan: … a metal hatch leading to a World War 2 bunker filled with hundreds of things that were believed lost in the war.

Wolf: If you could have a super power, what would it be?

Alan: The power to read minds and influence what other people think and do.

Wolf: There is a door at the end of dark, damp corridor. You hear rumbling. What do you do?

Alan: Check my phone to see if there’s signal. Call for backup and use my laser rifle to bore a peep hole.

Wolf: The world is about to end. What is the first thing you do?

Alan: Call someone I inadvertently hurt to make things right.

Wolf: Which is of your characters is your favorite?

Alan: Harry Middleton. He’s noble, a baseball star, and never compromises his love.

Wolf: Describe a meal you would be served while visiting another world.

Alan: Am I staying at the Marriott? If not, I’d love to sample all the local fruit I could. If that didn’t kill me I’d move on to fish and a sumptuous dessert.

Wolf: What story are you working on now?

Alan: I’m chronicling the worst month of my life (this one). Assuming I survive it, I will sanitize it some, because a story about your body suddenly betraying you at every opportunity might turn people off.

Wolf: What’s the most important thing you want for the rest of your life?

Alan: Good health for me and my family, and the ability to influence the world for the better. (It’s not about money because I have more than I need.)

Blog: Americathebeautiful.blog
Facebook: Alan Zendell
Twitter: @alanpze

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