It’s a cold day here in Atlanta, but the Blonde Roast is hot, we are sipping away and relaxed while doing some people watching here at the shop. Of course, this wouldn’t be “Books & Blondes” without a book to discuss, and so we welcome in Nathaniel Danes, author of “The Last Hero,” a sci-fi adventure available on Amazon.
Thanks for stopping in today! What can you tell us about your current work in progress?
Thanks for having me. Right now I have two novels in the pipeline. Books 2 and 3 from THE LAST HERO trilogy. Book 2, THE LAST REVENGE, is in editing and should be out in the spring. I’m also around 20,000 words into the first draft of the final installment, THE LAST STAND OF THE 1ST LEGION. I’m aiming to have that out in the fall. The first book in the series, THE LAST HERO, came out in October of last year.
What’s your primary method of writing? Do you brainstorm, work from an outline, or just jot down whatever comes to mind?
I first develop a thin outline of the story in my head. I’ve got the major bullet points of the beginning, middle and end figured out before I put pen to paper, or more accurately put, open Pages on my iPad Mini.
I just start writing and let the story develop in the moment. It’s fun that way because even I don’t really know how things will turn out for my favorite characters. One day I was feeling down and my wife asked what was wrong. I told her one of my favorite characters died and I really thought they would make it. She didn’t understand,
Who inspired you to get into writing as a profession?
I’ve always wanted to write but never really got the bug until I read the THE FOREVER WAR a couple years back. I’m a life long SciFi fan but generally only read military history. I stumble upon THE FOREVER WAR one day and was hooked. After reading a couple dozen other books, my own stories started itching to get out.
What has been the biggest challenge for you as a writer?
I’m dyslexic and almost blind, so the written word has been a life long challenge. It’s taken decades of k-12, college, graduate school and a day job that demands high quality written communication for me to sharpen my skills to the point where I could attempt to write a novel.
What followed was about three years of writing and writing and rewriting until I felt comfortable with submitting my first novel to a publisher.
Let’s go silly for a moment – if you could be any character from a TV series, who would it be and why?
Captain James T. Kirk. Does that really need an explanation?
Do you have a particular favorite spot to write? How about a favorite food or drink to stoke the ingenuity?
There is a recliner in my front room I like to lean back in and thumb away on my iPad Mini. A lot of people are surprised to learn every word in my 90,000-plus word novels were typed by thumb on an iPad 2 and now my mini. It sounds cumbersome to most but given my vision issues, an iPad is the ideal tool for me. The slower typing speed also allows me to organize my thoughts as I go.
As for favorite drink to spur the mind, whiskey. A glass of Johnnie Walker Black or Makers Mark is always sure to get me out of a jam.
What sort of advice can you give to those who are just getting into this field?
Just to simply keep at it and don’t rush it. Write and write and write, then rewrote and rewrite. More times than not, victory is granted to those who want it the most,
For our readers, here’s a little excerpt from “The Last Hero”:
Trent knelt down where Anna could throw her arms around his neck. She pulled against him tight and started crying again. Tears rolled down his face as he whispered, “I love you more than you can understand. I’m sorry.”
Her cries downed out his soft words.
After a minute, Trent summoned all of his strength to break free of her hold. Standing, he shared a look with Madison. She wrapped him in a loving, warm hug.
This time she did the whispering, “Remember what I told you. Make them pay.”
He pulled away, nodding as he placed his hand on Anna’s sobbing head.
“I’ll see you both again someday. I promise.” The words bound him to a promise he wasn’t sure he could keep.
Nathaniel’s Author Page on Amazon can be found here… https://www.amazon.com/author/nathanieldanes