What inspired you to start writing?

Honestly, it was reading.  I only read for school in my formative years and it was not until my freshman year of high school that a friend introduced me to a wonderful book that has all the clichés and tropes but for me–very new to the fantasy genre–I read Robert Jordan’s The Eye of the World in about three days, blissfully ignoring that week’s homework and assignments.  Alas, the seed was watered.  My countless hours of creating worlds and characters with my massive collection of action figures proved to me years later that the creativity to tell stories was there inside me from a very young age.  Once I started, I have not been able to stop.  While my first two attempts at writing a fantasy novel will forever be shelved, elements from those stories have been lifted and inserted in one form or another in my works.

It could be that I’ve always been intrigued by the elements of fantasy as a genre.  I grew up watching movies like Labrynth and Willow during my childhood countless times.  I delved into comics, cartoons and anime as well and all of these gripped my attention as expected for a boy still in grade school.  As I’ve stated before, I had quite the collection of action figures growing up and I meticulously created individual characters and worlds in which these characters faced conflict.  I had no idea at the time that my creativity was being massaged and stretched for years before I ever considered writing to be a desire of my heart.  Fantasy is my preferred genre simply because I feel for myself, my creativity is exercised at its highest degree.  I’ve dabbled with other genres in short story form and I’ve enjoyed those works and the writing I did.  I may very explore those in the future but the stories in me now that have to be released are fantasy in nature.

What are your favorite books?

I’ll have to limit this to a few but the list is always being amended in my mind as I revisit books.  Most of these are first books in series and you could assume I enjoyed the series as a whole but that’s not always the case.  In my opinion, many sequels feel rushed and do not hold up to the first book (a feat a desperately hope to avoid in my works).  So here’s the quicklist in no particular order:
  • The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan
  • Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson
  • The Black Company by Glen Cook
  • The Magicians by Lev Grossman
  • Legend by David Gemmell
  • The Red Wolf Conspiracy by Robert V.S. Redick
  • Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
  • The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
  • The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett
  • Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson
  • The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie
  • A Shadow in Summer by Daniel Abraham
  • The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss

I’m certain I’m overlooking or forgetting some books and I’m always reading and searching for new books, especially those that are not in the fantasy/sci-fi genre.