Today I’d like to welcome JB Taylor, Master Retweeter & author of numerous short stories, including his Dissimilar Shorts collections.
Can you give us your quickest description of your books?
I’m currently working on my own take on ‘The Sword in the Stone’ called a ‘A Wand in the Mist’. It’ll featuring everything I love. King Arthur, Merlin, wizards, witches, dragons and so much more. I’m loving every minute I spend on it.
Yes! I’ve been following your Facebook updates while you’ve been researching the mythology. This sounds so cool. What gave you this idea?
I’ve always loved reading anything involving Arthurian legend. Ever since I was a kid. So when I had the idea to write a story about a wizard I thought I’d throw King Arthur in there for fun. Then it hit me. I always loved his stories, so why not make one up of my own. So that’s what I’m doing. I’m writing a whole new take on ‘The Sword in the Stone’ that I hope people will like. I love fantasy, I love wizards and King Arthur, and I love writing stories like this so I think that’ll come across and people will dig it.
What is your favorite scene you’ve written? Can you give us a peek?
I recently wrote a scene involving Merlin for my ‘Wand in the Mist’ story. I think it’s good, though it needs a lot of tweaking as it’s a first draft. Below is the scene.
Uther Pendragon rushed from the great doors, Merlin at his side, and together they navigated past the surge of town’s folk rushing into the castle. Uther drew his sword. Merlin drew his wand. It was hue, ten inches and snow white. It bore heavy base that thinned out towards the tip. Feathers of the deepest black were etched into the body. Uther charged. Merlin stayed put and raised his wand like an orchestra conductor. The air rippled around him, emanating from his wand.
“Paineaalto!” he yelled. The rippling air around him shot forth with a long whoomp. A pain shot up his spine bringing him to one knee. His spell spread out like a blast wave. Hippogriffs fell out of the air as if sudden void of their wings. Manticores shot off their feet and streaked through the air. Each hit the ground on their backs, stingers and hooves kicking like cockroaches stuck on their backs. Knights and town’s folk alike shuffled backwards as if stuck by a surprising gust of wind, but didn’t fall.
Merlin, teeth clinched, growled and pushed himself to his feet. His knuckles whitened as he gripped his wand and gave it a flick as if swatting an irksome fly. “Haava!” he exclaimed. Again deep pain shot up his spine, this time sending him to his knees. The pain was excruciating, like a hundred nails being hammered up his back following the course of his spine. In a split second the heads of every manticore and hippogriff jerked from their attached necks in a rupture of red.
When silence fell the carnage could be fully taken in. Town’s folk lay sprawled in pools of water and blood. Knights, six or seven of them, were amongst them, their armor splashed with blood. Hippogriffs and Manticore’s were strewn about, their heads far from their bodies.
The rain stuttered to a stop.
Great action scene! I already want to read more. I take it this is not going to be a children’s version, correct? What audience are you going for?
Thank you. 🙂 Nope, definitely not a children’s book. There’ll be too much foul language and violence for kids to read it. My intended audience would be the same for a rated ‘R’ movie. So 17 and above.
What is one bit of advice you’d like to share with writers?
I have three bits of advice. Be yourself. Never be afraid to learn and adapt. Ignore the haters. There will always be someone who says you aren’t any good, that you’re wasting your time. These are people who lack confidence in themselves and opt to take out their pain on others. So ignore their lashing out at anything and everyone that moves and just do your thing.
It’s interesting how every single writer (it seems) has to learn to ignore negativity. What helps you to keep going when/if you run into these kind of people?
For me, I know I’m not that good at what I do but I try my absolute best. And writing is therapeutic and just pure bliss for me. I write because it’s fun and amazing, and an all-around great time. So when I run into negative people I just remember how much fun it is for me, how great it makes me feel and I push on. And when I get a little down I just tell myself, ‘Well yeah, you aren’t Stephen King, but you’re doing your best so learn from this and get better and move on.’ That usually helps. If not I just eat ice cream. 😉
In a perfect world where you could cast your book for a movie, who would you pick for your main characters?
If I ever get my story ‘Chaos’ finished it would be the movie I would cast. I think it would make one hell of a summer blockbuster.
Here is how I would cast it.
Chase Wright – Tom Hardy
Raven Moss – Jessica Chastain
Emma Hayes – Gemma Arterton
Ava Piers – Allison Scagliotti
Director Brooks – Saul Rubinek
I don’t even know these characters, and I already like your cast (and the Warehouse 13 influence). 🙂 Can you tell us more about ‘Chaos’?
Chaos follows Chase Wright as he overcomes a difficult past and learns to be a better person to become the greatest agent the Elite Operations Agency has ever seen. (The E.O.A is a top secret government agency that monitors and investigates alien activity on earth and off it.)
Is there anything you’ve read that made you jealous you didn’t think of it first?
Yeah, Harry Potter. Damn, J.K. Rowling! *shakes fists at the sky*
LOL. HP is a big one, yeah. Is it her use of magic that you wish you’d gotten your hands on first?
Definitely. Trying to write a unique story with wizards was made damn near impossible when J.K. came around and did her thing. But, I love a good challenge so it’s all good fun. Most of the time. Lol. It can be a little annoying when I Google something for research on wizards and the first 80 search results are Harry Potter. lol
Thanks, JB, for sharing!