Everyone, please welcome Josh Powell, who authored the very entertaining The Berserker & the Pedant – so worthy! You can check out my review of it over HERE. Today we talk about Josh’s kickstarter project, other fantasy authors, TV shows and plenty more. Enjoy!
If you could be an extra on a SFF TV show or movie, what would it be?
Oh, that’s a fun one. If it’s a main character, it’s too easy – Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous! As an extra I’m thinking SG-1 as a Jaffa or Goa’uld.
Would you rather have a dragon, or be a dragon?
If the dragon can polymorph, be a dragon. Otherwise, have a dragon. Preferably a Pseudodragon or Pocket Dragon or a sarcastic Jhereg so I can bring them with me.
If you had to choose someone to rescue you from the jaws of certain death would it be a superhero, supernatural creature, or a space alien?
A superhero, the other ones might bite or probe after saving me.
Would you choose to live permanently in a fictional world, or visit as many as you liked but you couldn’t stay more than a few hours?
If I get to choose which fictional world, stay permanently. If not, visit as many as I can. There are some worlds you just do NOT want to live in :)
Myths and beliefs that we would consider fiction or fantasy in modern literature once upon a time shaped history (think of all the hunts for unicorns & dragons). Do you see modern fantasy fiction affecting human cultures today and how?
I see modern fantasy more as a reflection and recording of who we are and strive to be at the time it was written, rather than shaping who we are becoming. Sci fi is the vision of what we want to become in the future and actively shapes it.
What has been your worst or most difficult job? How does it compare to writing?
Sitting at a desk working for the government as a programmer. The people were great, but I could not stand being given two weeks to do something that only took 30 minutes. That experience is definitely reflected in my Sci fi writing. Writing is the opposite of that, I have 30 minutes to do what should take two weeks!
If you were sent on a magical quest which other 4 fantasy authors would you take with you?
Totally different answers than if I was hanging out in a bar with them. On a quest I’d like Jim Butcher as the wizard for his creativity and magical knowledge, Larry Correia to be the tank and kill the monsters, Patrick Rothfuss to be the bard, and since I’m not sure who the cleric is, Anne Rice to be the necromancer and raise the dead. Back at the tavern, I’d want Steven Brust and GRRM swapped in there somewhere.
Care to share an awkward fangirl/fanboy moment, either one where someone was gushing over your work…..or one where you were gushing over another author’s work?
I try not to gush, when I see someone I’m a fan of I prefer to valiantly hide on the outskirts of their vision, stalking them just out of range saying “Oh my god, is that…” while pretending to look at something else. That’s what I did at Baycon with Amber Benson, I think I really pulled it off well.
Finally, what upcoming events and works would you like to share with the readers?
There is a Kickstarter to turn The Berserker and the Pedant into a graphic novel series. Some really amazing talent, veterans of Marvel and DC, have lined up to contribute to the work. The sketches and pencils for the first issue are in, and the artists are working on the inks and colors. So exciting! You can find the details at www.pedantpublishing.com
Also, Dragon Apocalypse, the sequel to The Berserker and the Pedant, is available to preorder and will be out in another month. It’s only 99 cents until soon after it’s released.
Gurken Stonebiter, avatar of Durstin Firebeard, templerager of the Stonebiter clan, is in a pretty pickle.
He’s an axe-happy, grammatically-challenged dwarf on the hunt for blood. Thieves made off with temple property, sending him into a fit of vengeful rage. Seeing as he’s a Berserker, it’s in everyone’s best interest not to get Gurken’s hackles up. Gurken often dissolves into a fury of blood, lust, and carnage unlike anything seen in the age of men. When he finds those whom he assumes to be the aforementioned thieves, he is unable to control himself. Thus for our heroes, a master magician named Arthur and a girl-child named Pellonia, the blood flows until poor Arthur is hacked into pieces.
It takes all the temple priests (and all the king’s men) to put Arthur back together again. Imprisoned for their supposed crimes, Pellonia and Arthur aren’t willing to sit around the dungeon on principle, and so promptly escape. They return the following morning to join Gurken on a hilarious and dangerous adventure to the Mines of Moog to recover the sacred Orb of Skzd. Along the way they face gruesome deaths at the hands of enormous arthropods, an amiable Minotaur, and excitable dragons, making them wonder what exactly they’re doing on this quest in the first place.
Pellonia, for one, is much more than meets the eye, and although she has the body of a pre-pubescent girl, she is full of snark and knowledge beyond her years. Her past and fate become apparent as they meet mysterious denizens from her childhood. Arthur’s ability to frequently engage in death throes only to return once more is to be admired as well as puzzled over. Unfortunately, one too many dismemberments occur and some shortcuts are taken during the resurrection process, to Arthur’s utmost shame and revulsion. Gurken, with his brash temperament and willingness to confront anything that challenges them, though it be ten times his size, is both an enviable asset and a terrible curse along the way. The three companions come together to brave obstacles and solve puzzles hindering them from obtaining the goal of their quest.
Within the Mines of Moog, the lurking creatures multiply in size, cleverness, and deadliness. Well, with the exception of a new knoll dwarf ally, who joins them as a healer to serve against future dismemberments. Kitten-sized ants, elven maidens, and others occasionally strive to assist our heroes on their oft-forgotten quest.
Gurken’s adventures run the gamut of the fantasy genre, taking us through the ridiculous to the mythological, passing through epic fantasy, and finally resting on fantastically improbable. The rapid, so-fast-you-might-miss-it pace of the short stories make for one incredible, bordering on the absurd, ride that will enthrall fantasy lovers everywhere. Fantastic creatures abound in these stories, and it takes a clever eye to catch all the different breeds and specimens from orc to elf. Blink and you will miss a flippant phrase or a clever beast of burden flickering into existence and going out. Gurken’s adventures have a cunning, dry, tongue-in-cheek style and quick-as-a-whip writing that will have fans of William Goldman’s The Princess Bride and Piers Anthony’s Xanth series begging for more.
Places to Stalk Josh Powell