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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Meet the Authors of the Fantasy Fiction Tour!

First, some news: The Suspense Challenge continues. Next week, I'll announce the winner of the 2nd Suspense Technique. That means there's still time to enter!

And now for our Feature Presentation!

In just under a month, four fantasy authors (including me) will be setting forth on a tour of the US East Coast. We'll be visiting cities from Atlanta to New York. I'll be posting a schedule very soon.

But starting this evening, I'll be posting a series of Meet the Author threads. These are taken from a series of interviews we all participated in. I'll post all four authors responses to one question in each thread. Hope you enjoy getting to know these wonderful fantasy writers.

Wayne Thomas Batson--The Door Within Trilogy and Isle of Swords
Bryan Davis--The Dragons in Our Midst and Oracles of Fire
Sharon Hinck--The Becky Miller Books and The Sword of Lyric Series
Christopher Hopper--The Rise of the Dibor and The White Lion Chronicles

I'll also be including a new piece of desktop art with each new post. Feel free to save the file and use it as your computer's background. Share with friends or post wherever else you blog!

Q: Why do you write fantasy?

WB: I write fantasy because fantasy was my gatekeeper genre, i.e. the type of fiction that made me a lover of reading. When I was in the 6th grade, my cousin gave me a copy of The Hobbit. That was all it took. I suddenly became aware of the power of language to transport a reader emotionally and experientially into wonderful new worlds. My imagination churns constantly, and fantasy allows me to turn it loose and truly create. Additionally, I am compelled to write fantasy because it is absolutely my passion. I’ve always loved tales of knights and dragons, exotic settings, and great feats of valor! And in traditional fantasy, I find the sort of world I’d like to live in. Honor and kindness are revered. Simple lives of tending gardens, working with your hands, and gathering around a table with friends at a pub—I long for such things. I mean, sure, running into a pesky dragon while taking out the trash would be a little inconvenient, but still…

BD: Because I want to imitate Jesus. Remember how he told us about a camel passing through the eye of a needle? That was a fantasy story. Such tales stretch our vision, allowing us to see beyond the physical, and since our battles are in the spiritual realm, this is the realm we need to understand. Fantasy is the most effective tool for explaining the gospel to our culture, so I want to use that tool to change the world for Christ.

SH: Fantasy novels often deal with the classic hero’s journey – the unlikely and lowly who is called to a task requiring courage and faith. I see the Christian life as an epic battle, full of adventure, danger, opposition, and breathtaking victories. In a sense, each fantasy novel is an extended metaphor of the day-to-day battles that each of us confront as we seek to serve Christ.

CH: I write fantasy because I believe in the power of parables. Whenever Jesus was trying to break down an issue for his listeners, so that they could really understand what he was trying to communicate, he rarely used logic, he used stories. C.S. Lewis put it best when he said, and I’m paraphrasing, that fiction circumvents the dragons that we set up to guard the front gates of our minds. When you tell someone a story, they are more likely to consider the value of your inference than if you were just to tell them straight out. So I guess I write fantasy because the human mind, and I have to believe the human heart, receives better through it.


Anonymous said...

Shouldn't today be the next award ceremony? It is one week from the 1'st....

Great interviews! I enjoyed reading them.

WayneThomasBatson said...

Can't do today. Sorry, Eve. Still much reading to do and I'm snowed under with deadlines, etc. for the next coupla days.

Anonymous said...

I was agreeing with Eve...but alas...Mr. Batson. We'll pray for you :)

everlastingscribe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
everlastingscribe said...

I had a feeling you were swamped. I will be praying too. Isn't fair that I should be having all the fun. ;)

chrisd said...

This was an excellent interview, Wayne.

Would you or your webmaster consider posting it to the Fantasy 4 website?

If you go to my blog, I have the picture you just posted, the banner and the feed for the tour.

If you post a copy of the interview on the other blog, it will show up on the feed.

I am passionate about this subject and will be praying for everyone on the tour and in particular, your family, Wayne.

Keep up the good work!

Unknown said...

I hope to see you at the Lancaster stop. Of course if I can convince my mother to drive me there (She is already mad at the fact I am begging for her to take me to Otakon and two months ago when I tried to get her to take me to New York to meet Neil Gaiman) Hopefully she will be convinced. Do you have any input on the stops? Can you add Philadelphia to your list! Sorry I just really wan to go! Heh!

WayneThomasBatson said...

Thanks for the prayer coverage Brett, Scribe, and all. I just got through a major hurdle at school, and I'm exhausted, but in a good way...

Hi, Chris! Thanks for doing all that. And the whole interview is available on the Fantasy Tour Site. You can download it in Word format.

And thank you for the prayers. We truly need them.

And, David I hope we can hook up. It would be great to meet you. And there is a small chance that a Philadelphia date might be added.

Anonymous said...

I understand, Wayne-you can only do so much :)

I'll be praying too!

Anonymous said...

WHAT? You mean he's only HUMAN??? I thought we revered him as a dragon-rider or sumthin..... :)