Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Author - Nicholas Andrews - The Adventure Tournament

An Up Close & Personal Interview

Where were you born and where do you call home?

I was born in Dayton, Ohio, and still live here. I'm a graduate of Bellbrook High School, Class of 2000. People don't normally think of Ohio as a beautiful state, but there is a lot of beauty in nature here. I do like where I am, despite the harsh winters we get.

What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 30 or less words, what would you say?

My debut novel is The Adventure Tournament. It's a comedic fantasy that's a bit like a cross between Dungeons & Dragons and Shrek. The goofy hero gets into all sorts of silly situations with the goal of winning a tournament to determine the best adventurers in the land.

Do you have plans for a new book?   Is this book part of a series?

Yes, the first draft of Babyface Fire is already finished. Each book in The Adventurers series is standalone, but part of the same world. This one will actually be breaking some new ground, as I believe it's the first time pro wrestling has ever been center stage in a fantasy novel.

What or who inspired you to write?  And how long have you been writing?

I've been writing basically since I could, and I would tell stories through drawing even before that. I've always loved to read and I've always had a big imagination. It was just a natural fit.

How did you come up with the title and cover design?

The Adventure Tournament just sounds wacky, doesn't it? It's not two words that usually go together. It's the big event that drives the characters in the novel, so it was appropriate too. The cover design is a parody of the title screen of the original Legend of Zelda. That was my first exposure to what I consider true fantasy, so I thought it fitting that I mock it on the cover of my first book.

Have you based any of your characters on someone you know, or real events in your own life?

Some of them, yes. There's a group of adventurers in the tournament based on another body of stories I wrote in high school that were caricatures of myself and my friends. Some of the themes in the story came out of my own life, if not the literal events themselves.

What books have most influenced your writing most and why?

David Eddings and Piers Anthony books were there when I really started to get serious about trying writing as a teenager. In later years, I've been influenced by the likes of George R. R. Martin, JK Rowling and Robin Hobb.
Patti Says:  I love the way George R. R. Martin writes.

One other point I always bring up, however, is that my generation is the first not only to draw inspiration from books and movies, but from video games as well. Starting off with Zelda and Dragon Warrior, I moved on to Final Fantasy, which had just as big an impact on my writing as anything. The stories from the SNES and Playstation era games I put up against anything in literature for their characterization and plot intricacies. Yeah, that was a huge influence.

Is there an Author that you would really like to meet?

I'd say George R. R. Martin, but I got that wish a couple months ago! And gave him a copy of The Adventure Tournament.

Patti Says:  Me too!  I would like to meet him I mean....

Do you prefer ebooks, paperbacks or hardcover?

Paperbacks, definitely. I'm not quite sucked into this whole e-book thing yet, though I recognize it's where the industry is heading. Nothing beats lying on the couch and reading a good old paperback, in my opinion. Hardcovers are fine too, but too expensive. I only buy those if I really can't wait to read an author's new work.

Have you ever read a book more than once?

Oh, yes. I reread more than I read new things. There's comfort in knowing where a story is going, and knowing I'm definitely going to be entertained by it.

Is there a particular movie that you preferred over the book version?

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire I enjoyed way more than what I thought to be the weakest book of the series. Twilight and New Moon also, but those books were horrid, so the bar was pretty low to begin with.

Do you have a book trailer?

Coming soon!

What are your thoughts on book trailers?

Good ideas. A visual representation always helps, I think. It's why movies and games have become so popular in modern times. Plus I used to edit videos, so it's something I can do myself and do well at.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

The first step is finishing that book/short story/whatever. Get it as polished as you can, and then you have something to sell. Don't let anything discourage you. In times of doubt, think of all the success stories you've heard. They started exactly where you were.

Laptop or desktop for writing?

I prefer desktop. I'm a fairly big guy, so I can spread out a bit more and be comfortable.

What is a movie or TV show that you watched recently and really enjoyed?

I'm really loving Torchwood: Miracle Day right now.

Where can your readers stalk you?


Is your book in Print, ebook or both?

The Adventure Tournament is available for print, Kindle and Nook. Visit my Facebook page to purchase signed copies.

About the book:
With the kingdom of Bolognia under attack by independent forces of random malcontents, it's time to send out the army to deal with these troublemakers, right? No, first there's money to be made! Send out the adventurers, those rogues who wander the countryside in search of fame and treasure, and take up all the good seats at the local pubs. Then, organize brackets, stage it for the public's entertainment, offer a prize and call it The Adventure Tournament.

Remy Fairwyn is a ne'er-do-well academic who really wants to become an adventurer. When he hears of the tournament, he jumps at the opportunity, only to find himself out of the frying pan and in the fire. Add ingredients like corrupt organizations, professional wrestlers, narcoleptic thieves, drama kings and malfunctioning magical minutia, and his venture quickly becomes a recipe for disaster. Nevertheless, he blunders his way into being the captain of his own team. Now he can follow his dream, but still has to contend with obstacles such as tournament organizers whose motives may not be clean, an overbearing father holding him to academic pursuits, and his own nonsensical noggin, which is better suited for a pack mule than a dashing hero. Still, he's determined to become the biggest badass warrior to ever wield a large piece of wood.

As the competition heats up, Remy discovers that the tournament itself could be putting the kingdom in danger, and it's up to him to uncover the truth before destruction consumes all he holds dear.

5.0 out of 5 stars Sword & Sorcery Humor--Gotta Love It!
I read this and enjoyed it. Of course, I enjoy light-hearted stories sprinkled heavily with humor. I would suggest offering an e-book version as I've switched to an 'e-reader and will never go back.(i'm deliberately not mentioning brand, just display tech. And e-ink pearl is good display tech.) In closing, this is not patches-on-your-sport-coat-elbows litrachur. It's a story the author seems to have enjoyed creating and hopes you enjoy it as well.

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