The nights are drawing in quicker and quicker but that just makes the campfire a more cozy place to be. Settle in dear reader and join me and we chat with fantasy and science fiction author Deston J. Munden.
1. Hi, Deston tell us a bit about yourself and what inspired you to write?
Hiya. My name is Deston J. Munden, science fiction and fantasy author from North Carolina. I am a game art design major, who enjoys video games and Dungeons and Dragons. What inspires me to write is the passion to tell stories, exploring the creativity of my mind, and trying to help other people like me to burst through the industry. It’s a pleasure to meet you.
2. What appeals to you most about the fantasy genre?
It is the limitless possibilities. Fantasy is a powerful tool to explore things that you can’t really do anywhere else. For me also, I’m a sucker for fantasy races, magic, and swords. I’m a very simple man to please when it comes to things like this. I feel like a lot of genres can hit these notes for me, but it’s still the fantasy genre as a whole that keeps bringing me back.
3. Tell us a little bit about your latest project and the challenges you’ve faced putting it all together?
My latest fantasy project is named Duke’s Brand. It’s a story about a knight that is on a redemption quest to better himself. The most difficult portion of this character, however, was that I made him with being autistic in mind. I wanted good representation with the character and how he acts to be both accurate and liberating for people that this character is meant to display. I’ve been marketing Ser Torlyek as Neville Longbottom meets Thor from the MCU and Steven Universe. I think that’s a good selling point for anyone interested.
It should be released in December or January! It depends on my editors.
4. What type of characters do you like to write the most and how much of yourself do you put into them.
I enjoy writing the burly big guys with hearts of gold. For some reason, that tends to be the characters that I play in video game as well as my go to Dungeons and Dragon archetype. I do tend to put a little bit of myself into them though. It’s something that I don’t see much in myself, so I want to pretend to be tougher and stronger than I actually am (partly because of bullying and not being able to protect myself in the past). Something about just being strong and living out that fantasy of protecting the people that I care about is present in a lot of my books.
5. For any wannabe writers out there what’s the most useful thing you’ve learned?
Finish that first draft. I don’t care how you do it, finish that first draft. I feel like a lot of new writers get trapped in this constant loop of writing and rewriting the first few chapters. I’ve done it myself. But that’s not how you learn how to write books. You learn how to write books by writing them, making mistakes, and learning from them. It wasn’t until I wrote a really bad trilogy before I began to learn more about how to write. If you don’t learn anything else, you learn how to write consistently and effectively after finishing your first draft of anything. So do it. Get it done. Stop pre-writing, world building, and talking about it and get the draft done.
6. What writing tricks do you utilise to hit your deadlines and keep your stories on track?
Writing consistently and having a planned writing schedule really has help me keep my stories on track. Before, I would either write sparingly or write out of schedule. It wasn’t until this became my full-time job where I started treating it like that. The trick is to write a little bit every day. It doesn’t even have to be a lot. There are days where I can barely manage 200 words, but I try to get other things done in the meantime. Other than that, I try to keep good notes on what I am writing and what’s going on with them for the best possible story I can manage.
7. Are you a plotter or a pantser (make it up as you go)?
Pantser, definitely. I tend to make a lot of it up as I go. It doesn’t mean that I go in without a plan in mind. I usually have a beginning, middle, and end planned somewhat or at the very least loosely. But, I like the idea of telling myself the story first and then working my way in and filling in the blanks in the second draft. It’s an adventure to say the very least.
8. What plans do you have for the future? A new series or perhaps a dip into other genres?
Right now, I’m sticking with my fantasy and science fiction genres. I do want to dip into some other styles of fantasy and sci-fi as I get more experienced. Right now, though, I have my hands full with the two series that I’m working with at the moment.
9. With the world the way it is at the moment what sort of tales do you prefer? Ones with heroes where good triumphs over evil or ones that take a darker approach?
I’ve always been the type that enjoy when heroes’ triumphs over the evil. I feel like fantasy has been dipping deeper and deeper into grim dark. Though I do enjoy reading these stories, they aren’t something that I would want to write in my current headspace. I just wanna see a guy or girl or non-binary pal fight some evil and takes some names while dealing with their own personal issues.
10. What’s better, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings or Star Wars?
Lord of the Rings, hands down!
You can follow Deston –
Website : www.djmunden.com
Dusk Mountain Blues: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B085LQJH3K