HOUSTON, Texas, February 3, 2012 — You have to make and create your own destiny by taking action and putting yourself in control. From When Jonathan Cried For Me.
Part II, Dream Chasers: Luke Romyn is an Australian author and bestselling horror novelist (The Dark Path ISBN 978-1936222735 and Black Listed ISBN 978-0987214911). During our previous conversation, Luke revealed his past and the transformation of his life from destructive to constructive through his writing.
Carter Lee: Who inspired you when you first started writing? Who inspires you now?
Luke Romyn: I’ve already mentioned David Gemmell (The Swords of Night and Day
ISBN 0-345-45834-6), who inspired me to write fiction, but I was inspired by many figures early on in life who had absolutely nothing to do with writing.
My earliest inspiration, oddly enough, was Arnold Schwarzenegger. Beyond the bodybuilding, acting, the “governating” Austrian was a man who followed his dreams despite reality and the world saying he couldn’t do things.
He pushed on, believing in himself at all times and following his instincts. That’s something everyone should aspire for.
My more recent inspirations are people like John Locke, who has gone against all conformity and forged his own path in the relatively new electronic industry of publishing. Here is a man who did all the things people said he shouldn’t and is succeeding tremendously, selling almost 2 million copies of his books last year. Not bad for a self-published author. John is also an incredibly down-to-Earth guy who is never too busy to help out other authors, myself included.
Carter: What barriers did you have to face when you wrote and released your first book, The Dark Path. How did you overcome these barriers?
Luke: I had no idea how to write a book. Yeah, that kind of sucked, especially when I was determined to write this book. The fear of such an awesome task almost broke me, but I kept at it, forging ahead despite my reservations.
When I say I didn’t know how to write a book, that doesn’t mean I couldn’t write. I always had a knack for putting one letter after another, but it was the size and scope of a novel that made me doubt myself. It took many years, often going back to delete entire chunks of storyline that made no sense at all, until one day I was at the end.
And then I had to figure out how to get published. Don’t get me started about that.
Carter: The Dark Path became a bestseller, voted in the top ten horror novels of 2009. Out of all the novels in that genre released, it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle as a writer. What is it about The Dark Path that stood out to readers and got their attention?
Luke: People often say it’s because of Vain and the battle against the evil within him to save an innocent boy that really grips them. He is such a unique character that despite the intensity of his deeds, readers are still able to forgive him as he tries to protect Sebastian against foes he cannot slay.
It’s very easy to write a story of good-versus-evil where the hero is of flawless character and the villains are malicious baby-eaters.
But The Dark Path blurs the lines between these, and rather than judging the characters’ nature, it works off their deeds instead. So a man, who would rather torture and kill, is found to be the protector, and his enemy is quite often the thing that makes him so strong: his darkness.
Carter: What can readers expect from Blacklisted, compared to The Dark Path?
Luke: When I began writing Blacklisted, I wanted to create a story based totally in reality, which gets faster and faster as you get into it until the peak of the storyline practically explodes off the pages. I didn’t want to rely on otherworldly ideas or fantasies; I wanted to prove I could create an incredible story based here, in our own world, whereas most of my other stories touch on the ethereal.
Blacklisted achieves this beyond my wildest expectations. Already compared to Robert Ludlum, which is a tremendous honor, the book once again places a lot of emphasis on the main characters, particularly Mike Swanson, whom many have already realized I based upon my experiences in life working as a bouncer.
Like Vain, Mike is a much-damaged character, but for a lot of the story he is almost powerless, whisked along from place to place, unable to control his own destiny until the very end. I’m extremely happy with the result and reader feedback so far; it has been phenomenal.
Carter: What advice can you give others who dream about being a novelist one day, specifically in the action or horror genre?
Luke: Follow your instincts and write from the heart. Too much planning can slow down the pace of the story and make it sound like a textbook, rather than immersing the reader deep into the storyline.
But opinions will vary on this.
Write every day. Get into a habit of working on something every single moment you can. Otherwise the time will disappear and you will slide into bad habits which stop you from writing altogether. A little bit each day adds up to a lot over a week and a great deal over the course of a month.
Before you know it, your book is done, and then you get to begin editing…which you should try to do every day. And so on and so forth.
You can read more about Luke Romyn and his books by visiting http://www.lukeromyn.com/home
For part one of the Luke Romyn interview click here.
What are Dream Chaser interviews?: Throughout life, there are those that inspire, that invoke wonderment, that we wonder how they did what they did, or got where they are. A Dream Chaser is someone that has followed a path to a realize a dream, whether on the big stage or with the local community organization. Dream Chaser interviews introduce you, the reader, to those that inspire.
Carter Lee is the author of, When Jonathan Cried for Me, President of Innovative Social Dynamics LLC., and is a professional speaker. To learn more about his book visit http://www.whenjonathancriedforme.com . For a personal appearance or speaking engagement visit http://www.innovativesocialdynamics.com
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