Today I have David M. Brown, author of Fezariu's Epiphany, guest-blogging at The Life and Lies!
The Secret of Inspiration
Where does a writer get their ideas from? I can only speak for myself here but the answer would have to be sometimes in the most surprising places, other times from sources I would have expected. Each day a new idea may come to me, usually when I don’t have a pen and paper to hand, but with so much to appreciate in the world it is hard not to find inspiration from somewhere.
My biggest source for ideas is undoubtedly history. When I first began building the world of Elenchera in 1999, I was indebted to many history books but one in particular – Cassel’s World History. This giant of a book traced all the key dates and events in our timeline and even had room for some essays about the 100 most important people to have ever lived. These weren’t necessarily people who had done good deeds, but more who had had a massive impact on history.
As I read the book from cover to cover, I learned of how societies were founded and developed from simple ideas and ambitions to thriving cities. I always had a notepad with me when I read Cassel’s World History. Anything that really struck a chord with me I would jot down such as the famous battle at Thermopylae in 480BC or Captain Scott’s heroic but tragic march to the South Pole (1911-2). Not everything I noted down would be used but many events inspired aspects of Elencheran history. Europe’s discovery of America, first by Leif Ericsson in 1100, and then by Christopher Columbus in 1492 has had a major bearing on the world of Elenchera. When East Elenchera discovers the lands in West Elenchera, centuries of brutal colonialism begin. I’m not trying to make a statement here about our own history but to take that defining moment when a world is changed forever.
I also find inspiration in films, music, games and books. The RPG series Final Fantasy is why I am writing today. I stared playing it in 1998 and was overwhelmed less by the visuals but by the worlds, the characters and the storylines. Final Fantasy games make use of gods from myths and legends and one of these – Odin – intrigued me. I soon discovered he was a real god, a Norse god nonetheless, and thanks to Final Fantasy I suddenly started reading Norse mythology, the Icelandic sagas and even Beowulf. It still surprises me to think this writing journey once instigated through a love one game franchise but though the Final Fantasy series has deteriorated since its tenth installment, I still play those games, love them and will always be indebted to them for where I am now.
Ideas usually come to me when I go for a walk and each time I never have a notepad. Instead I will either write a text or even email myself so I don’t forget! I look forward to each day wondering what I am going to discover. One of my future novels was born when I was listening to Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera. Christine is in a graveyard and the Phantom suddenly appears singing, “Wandering child so lost so helpless, yearning for my guidance.” The thing is I didn’t see Christine or the Phantom. I saw a character named Lorenzo watching his broken-hearted lover Celestia weeping over his grave. That’s what I mean. Something as simple as a song can trigger an idea in me just like that.
Is there a secret to inspiration? I’m not sure there is other than to keep your eyes, ears and mind open to wonder and possibilities. Imagine different outcomes of events in your own life and the lives of others. They say we all at least one novel in us and I sincerely believe that. We go through life and experience so many things it’s hard not to find at least one story to tell, even if it is just our own.
About the Book
12-year-old Fezariu thought his mother died when he was little, but when his beloved stepfather dies the boy discovers she is alive and well - and working at the most famous brothel in all of Elenchera. When she cruelly rejects him it's more than he can bear, and he runs away to join a band of ruthless soldiers for hire. The Merelax Mercenaries will fight for anyone who can pay them, no matter the justice of the cause.
Fezariu grows up among the soldiers and becomes one of them. He thinks his time with the mercenaries has hardened him. But a campaign in his old home town pushes him too far, and he discovers what really happened to his mother. Maybe there are some things money shouldn't buy... and maybe it's time Fezariu took his revenge.
About the Author
David Brown could be considered a fantasy fanatic, especially since he has spent the last 10 years developing a 47,000-year history for his fictional world of Elenchera. When converting his obsession into literary form, David commits himself to a rigorous writing and editing process before his work can meet his approval. Combined with the critical eye of his wife and a BA Honors in History and English, David's dedication leads him to his goal of inspiring readers through heartfelt stories and characters.
Although David is inspired primarily by fantasy fiction, he also finds his muse in the form of anime, world cinema, history, and biographies. His own books, Fezariu's Epiphany and the in-progress A World Apart, combine aspects from worlds both old and new into compelling tales of a world not soon forgotten., David himself certainly does not lack a spirit of adventure; in fact, he left his job in 2007 in order to spend a month traveling. Second only to meeting and marrying his wife, David counts this as one of the most amazing experiences of his life.
The Elencheran Chronicles: http://elenchera.com
The World According to Dave: http://blog.elenchera.com
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11451305-fezariu-s-epiphany (book page)
David will be giving away a $25 Amazon gift card to one randomly chosen commenter at the end of the tour. Check out the other tour stops for more chances to win!