MY INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR C.J. ROSE!
What’s your name and what genre would you consider your books to be?
I write YA Fantasy Fiction
Tell me about your book. How did you come up with that (story, angle, idea)?
The way I would describe it best to somebody who’s never read it before is like this: Bridge of the Gods tells the tale of a young boy who learns of a destiny that has been hidden from him his entire life. Everyone that he loves has been keeping a secret from him and only when they feel he is ready do they tell him of his true nature. Luther goes through every trial a typical teenage boy goes through in the years leading up to adulthood. He struggles with finding out who he is, who he wants to be and the biggest struggle he faces is that of his emotions.
How did you get interested in writing this particular genre (historical novels, mysteries, sci-fi, children’s books, etc.)?
I used to write song lyrics in high school but I was never much of a writer of anything else. Something back from the fact that I really hated to read I never really had a genre growing up that I actually liked. It wasn’t till I started reading books like The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe or the Percy Jackson books that I really started to find a liking of a specific genre. As I continued to read different stories from different writers in more of a YA fantasy fiction genre, I started to see that this was the place that my mind always wanted to go.
Can you tell me about your Series?
There will be 3 books in the series with a companion cookbook to boot.
Book 1 is based on Olympus just after the war with the Titans.
Book 2 is based in 1633 France where our dynamic duo teams up with the Musketeers.
Book 3 is based in Camelot after the Crusades. (This one has dragons!)
Was it always meant to become a series?
In the beginning I was not sure if I wanted it to be a series or not, but as I started writing more, I knew his story couldn’t end that quickly.
What’s a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write? Do you set a daily writing goal?
Sadly, writing is not my full time gig. I work as an insurance software tech by day, and a theatre geek by night. So writing is not really a thing I can set a goal for right now. Since all 3 books are written, and are awaiting the publishing and editing stages. I try to concentrate on the marketing side of things.
Do you have a new book in the making and if so, what’s the name of your upcoming book?
My main concentration is promoting Bridge of the Gods as well as the companion cookbook that is out covering the characters in all three books in the series. Books two and three are written and in the editing stage before they go to the publisher.
How important are character names to you in your books? Is there a special meaning to any of the names?
I think the name of the character signifies who they are as a person. It brings the character to life and gives the purpose.
Where do your ideas come from?
Most of the ideas came from my love for the periods I wrote about. Greek Mythology, The Three Musketeers, and Camelot. Plus, I love to cook and bake so the cookbook was a no brainer.
Is there a genre that you’ve been wanting to experiment with?
Well, I always thought mystery would be fun to toy around with, until I was asked to write a murder mystery play for the local theatre. There was a definite waver in confidence for that one.
What is the hardest part of writing for you?
I think the hardest part of writing the book is figuring out the direction your character should go. Some other aspects that make it difficult are whether or not to try to find a publisher or to self-publish and when you come to that decision all of the work it takes to get to the point you tried to be at.
What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
I would say the fact that I actually completed the book is a great accomplishment.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully owning my own bookstore. The idea is to have an old fashioned bookstore that sells things like homemade candles, teas, lotions, herbs, things like that. And of course we would have sweets.
What writing advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Write for you first, then write for everyone else.
What is your least favourite part of the writing / publishing process?
Publicity.. It is hard when you don’t have a lot of support from the outside world.
Can you give us a few tasty morsels from your work-in-progress?
Taking it out of the box, I examine it more, catching the detail in the markings that make their way down the blade. Each one is a different swirl pattern, making me think of an ancient language from a long time ago. The weight is tolerable, but I know it is made more for display, not for using.
My thoughts are interrupted by my mother’s next words.
“It was your fathers.” I can see the sadness in her eyes as she speaks of him. “It was a part of him for as long as I can remember. He loved and cherished that sword as much as his family.” I can see the tears that she is fighting back brimming the edge of her lashes.
I don’t say anything back to her, I just nod and continue examining the sword.
After a few minutes, Gwen speaks up, breaking the silence that has settled in the room. “Now open this one.”
Her grandmother hands me their gift. I open it up a little more reluctantly, not sure what to expect. Inside I find a ring, gold in color with a medallion that matches the one on the sword. I don’t know what to say.
“This, as well, was your fathers. He was wearing it the day he died. His last wish was that you would receive these things when the time came for you to understand.” Morgan’s words bring the room to a standstill.
“How do you know my father?” I beckon.
“All in good time, Luthor.” What? Her answer doesn’t even make sense. This whole night hasn’t been making any sense.
“We have one more gift for you. It’s a letter from your father. You don’t have to open it now if you don’t want to.” I just nod as she hands it to me. I place it with the rest of my things.
My sister is silent the whole time, never saying a word. When everyone begins to get up from the table to leave, she makes her way to her room. I want to follow her, but I know I need to say good-bye to my guests first.
After they leave, and Mom starts to clean the kitchen, I know I can go check on my sister now. I tap on her door hoping she isn’t asleep already.
“Yeah?” She calls.
“It’s me, can I come in?”
I find her curled up on her bed in a fetal position, clutching the one true love she has always had, her stuffed bunny, Hopper. Sitting down next to her, I place my hand on her leg, hoping to reassure her about whatever is wrong.
“Are you okay?” I ask.
“I don’t believe you for a second.”
“It’s just hard, you know.”
There is a moment of silence before I answer her. “Yeah, I know.” I sit a minute trying to think of something to do or say that will help, but there is nothing. That’s when I decide to risk it all.
“Do you want to read the letter with me?” I look at her, waiting for an answer.
She then begins to sit up next to me and nods her head ‘yes’.
I open it and read aloud what it says.
“Son, the only gift I can give you is this…” I look at her in wonder and keep reading.
“It isn’t much, but I hope these things mean as much to you as they do to me. I want you to know how much I love you and your sister. It pains me to write this now, not knowing if you will ever get it or not. I do need to ask you one favor; Son, whatever happens don’t blame anyone but me. There is one more thing I need to tell you.” I pause for a minute, looking at my sister, I silently question what our father has to tell me.
“You’re not who you think you are,” I continue on, “You, my son, are a Traveler; a special breed of the human race, tasked to help those that come before you.”
With those words, the end of the letter brings a new beginning to my life.
Do you have any favorite authors or favorite books?
I don’t really have a favourite book or author but I would have to say some of the more inspiring ones would be J. K. Rowling, Stephen King, Edgar Allan Poe, Shakespeare, and Maya Angelou.
Of all the characters you have created, which is your favourite and why?
I would not say that Luthor is my favorite, but he is the most relatable to. A person who struggles with his identity and what his purpose is in life, as well as how to handle the destiny he has.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
It really depends on the day. If I am having a good day in general, it will energize me. If it has been a bad day, I am usually exhausted.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
A little of both. I think that is there is not some form or originality in your writing, the writing is not really yours.
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
My Facebook friends list is packed with other authors. One of the best ways to help is to just be supportive. Share their posts, comment on things, etc.
If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
“That Really Didn’t Go as Planned”
Where can your fans find you and follow??
Thank you for taking your time to do this interview ❤️