4 questions about the series:
How would you describe your style as a writer?
I’m a literary fiction writer trapped inside a commercial storyteller's body. I love a riveting action/adventure story - give it to me straight and direct, with great pacing and no unnecessary prose. But I adore words and language. I relish reading well written books. For me, a novel should be composed like a symphony. Every word, phrase and sentence should flow and respond to what comes before and after it in the text. I think a lot about cadence, rhythm, and timing in my writing. And voice too. Imagine a vocal artist singing a song that doesn't fit their range or style- the wrong use of an amazing talent. A story should unfold like orchestral movements and passages, filled with melodies sung by harmonious voices that reach readers' eyes and ears.
Why did you base THE WIND TIDE series on Ancient Greek drama and epics?
I wanted to write a space opera that emphasized the human experience and placed readers in the minds of the characters. In looking at story structures, the tragedy stood out. That led me to famous Greek examples, especially those by Sophocles. The tragedy is an interesting model for a plot because it involves a series of important events that lead to both a "fall" and an act of emotional awakening and understanding - but of course, only after it's too late. Antigone pulled me in because of its emphasis on the struggle between family and state. That fit with the moral problems of terraforming and energy competition and its impact on people's lives and planetary ecosystems. From there, the others came easy. A heist (Book 2)? The Trojan Horse, of course! And Book 3... a tale of moral transformation and a new code of justice. The Eumenides, a play by Aeschylus, was a perfect point of departure to wrap up the trilogy. It's challenging to approach pre-existing sources critically while allowing your own creativity to lead the writing process. I believe it is the responsibility of contemporary science fiction to re-envision and re-interpret historical influences in creative ways that update, critique and break the social and cultural limitations of the original versions. I should mention that I only loosely model my stories off of Ancient Greek sources. As a reader, you might not notice the threads and themes if they weren't explicitly acknowledged. They're like inspirational whispers just beyond the reach of readers, but vital to the author's creative process.
Hey, what's up with the use of both 1st person and 3rd person (limited) in your books? And why do you consistently write stories with two main characters?
Goodbye to the Sun (Book 1) does this - it toggles every chapter between 1st person & 3rd person limited all the way through the text. I wanted this approach and reading experience to amp up the subjectivity of shared experiences and how that relativity shapes the tensions and motivations of the main characters. It also provides internal and external character experience for the reader. This continues in Books 2 and 3 but less often than the consistent back-and-forth chapter structure of Book 1.
What is an Anthology trilogy and why did you choose that format for The Wind Tide series?
Each book in an Anthology series relates to the previous one but is not a direct continuation of the narrative. This is the case in the trilogy that makes up the Wind Tide series. Certain characters reappear in the series but the settings shift and time passes between stories and events in each book. If you've seen the Star Wars films, think of that scrolling text at the start of each movie that gets you situated before that particular narrative begins. The Wind Tide series can be read in order (and I recommend it) but you could also pick each one up and read it independently. I favor this approach because it creates "self-reliant" stories that together make up three dramatic "acts" in one epic space opera trilogy.