Welcome one and all to the first ever author interview in my blog, since I usually do character interviews. Anyhow, I decided to be adventurous and dive in into the mysterious arena of author interviews. The author that I will interview today writes a unique blend of fantasy novel and Japanese manga-based theme. He is now on the third book of his Draconica Series. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Dan Wright.
Thank you for gracing us with your presence today, Dan. Tell us, what is this new book all about?
Final Ragnarok: She Returns is the third book overall in my Draconica series and the first of a two part Final Ragnarok storyline. It takes place about two years after Legacy of the Dragonkin and it is about a terrible masterplan that had been put in motion since long before the events of the first book in the Draconica series. It basically a lot darker than my other works and features the return of a hideous monster, known only as “She”. Who she is will be revealed very soon. Very soon. And if She returns, it could spell the end of Draconica as we know it.
That sounds very interesting. Having read the first three books, I bet this one has a lot of hidden surprises and unexpected twists as well. So, what is your favorite color?
Blue. No.. YEEELLLLLLOOOOOWWWWW… (props to anyone that gets the reference! XD)
Yellow? I see, I believe yellow is a wonderful color too. (I have absolutely no idea about the reference thing LOL). Anyhow, what is your inspiration for the Draconica Series?
Medieval Fantasy and Greek Mythology were my main inspirations, Lord of the Rings, Narnia Chronicles and Games Workshop tabletop games would be another. I just wanted to create a mythical and epic backdrop with a lot of action and colourful characters. Then I got into Anime and Manga and that helped me evolved it into more of a tongue-in-cheek action style. Over time I’ve tried adding some sci-fi and steam punk related elements to it. Draconica has been referred to as “Kitchen Sink Fantasy”, which mixes in as many styles as they can to it. I think that sums it up perfectly.
So basically, it has something in it for different kinds of people. I remember there was one spin-off, Taurok’s War, that has a really good romance story. Anyhow, all this talk about kitchens has gotten me hungry. What is your favorite food?
Sunday Roasts. Especially roast beef… mmmmmmm…
I am definitely extremely hungry right now…
Terrible, gnawing hunger aside, let’s continue. When you first drafted the first book, do you see it ending exactly this way?
To be honest, back when I wrote Trapped on Draconica, I never knew how the book series would go. I could have easily left it with one book and that would have been the end of it. But thankfully my imagination won through and, lo and behold, three years after publishing my first book, I now have the third book in the series.
When your imagination runs, no one can tell where it will go. However, I am terribly curious, what is your favorite animal?
I have a cat and she is lovely, so cats are definitely up there for me. But pandas are also cool. J
Pandas and cats are indeed the cutest!
But penguins trump them all!!! Penguins FTW!
*cough cough* Phew… Having spent my adrenaline rush from screaming about penguin cuteness out loud, here’s the next question. How is this book different from the books before it?
It’s a lot darker and more mature than some of my other works – whilst still trying to keep it young adult where I can. It delves into some themes that I never really explored before – and goes into ground never really covered before. Also, the truth about the dragons and Draconica’s creation is revealed here in a pretty shocking twist.
Well, as long as my beloved Finn Taurok is alive, I will definitely love this next book. Who is your favorite male and female character in your book? Why?
For males it’s Man in Shadow. Simply because he’s just so twisted and evil, with zero empathy. However, his sense of humour balances his darkness I find. I enjoy writing scenes for him because I try to find ways of making my readers squirm and laugh out loud at the same time with him.
For females, it would have to be Zarracka. She’s always been one of my favourite characters to write for. She’s definitely the sex symbol of the series – but at the same time, I think her personality makes her a little more than just a fan service character. Zarracka can be anything from goofy to sneaky, to downright evil and cold. But her character arc in this book (and the next one) may surprise readers.
I have to agree that Man in Shadow is indeed an extremely interesting character and Zarracka is unbelievably gorgeous, but I am still loyal to my Finn. Now that we know who you like, who then is the character you made that you despise the most?
Jihadain. Simply because of the lengths she will go to hurt Daniar. Of course, if you see her background, you can kinda understand it (as Jihadain has had to fight for everything and Daniar pretty was spoon fed it all), but you still hate Jihadain for what she does. I basically modeled her after every single villain that I hated.
Yeah, Jihadain has been pretty bad. I do think she’s really pretty though. For the next question, please be honest. Did you kill off any characters in this book?
Ah… now that would telling 😉
*sniff sniff* So if you won’t answer that one, here’s the next. If you were a character in your own series, what kind of character will you be?
Hmmm, I don’t think I could really put myself in my own series – that would be cheating. But if I had to chose, I think I’d be a mysterious anti-hero type. Maybe someone with magical powers who can wield a cool weapon. Something like that maybe?
Being in the shadow is mysterious too. *snickers* Now I know why you really like Man in Shadow. On a lighter note, what can you say about Finn’s fangirls?
To tell the truth, I never realized how popular Finn was, until I showed a teaser picture of him being poisoned. I got a lot of hate from his fans. Finn certainly seems to be a very popular character with my readers. I must admit though, he is another of my favs to write for.
So to keep it fair and balanced, what about Zarracka’s fanboys?
Actually, I think Zarracka has more FEMALE fans than male ones, strangely enough. Can I count myself as a ? XD
Hahaha! Sure, why not? Well, I have to say, Zarracka could turn even the most demure lady. Okay, slight exaggeration but she is H.O.T!!!
What can you say to other aspiring writers out there?
The obvious ones that people say is “follow your dreams” and “never give up”. And that’s certainly true. But I have a saying that I personally think is brilliant. As a writer, you’ll find yourself getting knocked down time and time again and even start to wonder why you even bother doing what you do (something that all creatives go through). But, as they say in Batman Begins “Why do we fall? So that we can learn to stand up”. J
I totally agree with you. I do hope this inspires people to follow their dreams and write that novel they have all been dreaming about.
Promote your book:
I think this synopsis should do the trick 😉
She is coming…
When Daniar Dragonkin heard those words, she had no idea of the full horror that would follow. Now, enemies converge to bring to life a monstrous plan that will spell the end of Draconica.
With her family threatened, old enemies returning to torment her – and a civil war in Baalaria that prevents any help from her sister, Daniar faces the darkness moment of her entire life.
Heroes will die, evil will rise – and Daniar’s sanity will be pushed to breaking point.
She Returns is the first book in the Final Ragnarok saga – and the darkest moment in the Draconica series so far. The countdown to Draconica’s ultimate fate has begun.
Thanks for having me on your blog! It’s been a pleasure J
Dan Wright lives in Canterbury, Kent, UK. A huge fan of both Fantasy and Manga, he has a style that combines both within his writing, which lets him tell stories that are both dramatic and tongue-in-cheek at the same time. He picked up a love of Fantasy stories after reading The Lord of the Rings, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and numerous Roald Dahl novels.
Dan also runs his own website, blog and a wiki page dedicated to the world of Draconica. He has also been a reviewer for the website Read2Review and occassionally reviews books on his blog. He has also written a short comic book strip called Queller, which was published in an anthology for the comic Lighting Strike Presents… At the moment he is also currently working on a script for an independant video game – to be released in the future.
Authors who have inspired Dan are Douglas Adams, J.R.R Tolkien, Harlan Ellison, Alan Moore, Joss Whedon, H.P Lovecraft, George R.R Martin and Hiromu Arakawa.
Pictures used in this post is of Fukawa/Genocider Sho, some pictures from google search, and artwork by Alexis Centeno whose art also appears in the Draconica Series books