We had the opportunity to interview Andy Peloquin. Known for The Last Bucelarii series, Hero of Darkness series, and Different, Not Damaged, he is making an incredible impact in the dark fantasy genre.
Introduce yourself and your experience with writing!
I am, first and foremost, a storyteller and an artist–words are my palette. Fantasy is my genre of choice, and I love to explore the darker side of human nature through the filter of fantasy heroes, villains, and everything in between. I’m also a freelance writer, a book lover, and a guy who just loves to meet new people and spend hours talking about my fascination for the worlds I encounter in the pages of fantasy novels.
Who’s your childhood literary superhero?
From my childhood, I’d have to say A.C. Doyle. One of the best birthday presents I’ve gotten to-date was The Complete Works of Sherlock Holmes (on my 11th birthday). I read the crap out of that book until I had to give it away. I went and bought myself a new copy of the exact same edition because I loved it so much.
Something about the way he made those mysteries so damn confusing, then solved them with such cool, calm logic just stuck with me. I still try to approach the mysteries in my own fantasy novels the same way.
Have you ever written fan-fiction?
I have not. The only thing I’d consider writing fan-fic for would be Deadpool, but I know I’m nowhere near funny enough to pull it off!
How possessive are you about your work?
Very and not a lot. Sounds odd, I know.
I’m very possessive in that I know the story that I want to tell for the character, and I know their journey needs to feel organic and accurate the person I have created. I know no one would be able to write the stories the same way I do because everything is colored by my unique perspective.
And yet, I’m not so tied to my creations that I can’t accept outside ideas, help, even outside fan-fiction. Heck, my current series is actually set in a city and uses elements that someone wrote into a fan fiction piece.
Can you tell us about your current projects?
My current project is a 5-book series titled Heirs of Destiny. It’s a spin-off of both of my existing series—Hero of Darkness and Queen of Thieves—following young adult (17 y/o) protagonists (three male, three female) as they fight to save “the City of the Dead” free greedy politicians, bloodthirsty cults, vicious criminal syndicates, and even darker, ancient threats. It’s a fast-paced, action-packed series that follows four POV characters—a REAL challenge to write, let me tell you! Books 1-3 are written, and I intend to complete Books 4 and 5 before the Christmas holidays, with an eye on a January 2019 launch.
What other genres do you enjoy reading?
I’ll dabble in the occasional sci-fi or thriller, but I tend to stick mostly to fantasy. Call it research, scoping out the competition, or simply preference—fantasy is my jam!
What is your motivation for writing more?
Obviously there’s the financial side of things—we writers need to eat and pay bills, too—but I find that if I don’t write, I kind of go a bit crazy. Fiction gives me an outlet for my thoughts, feelings, emotions, and beliefs. I need to tell these stories, else I’ll start to feel bottled-up. So as long as I keep writing more, I can keep exploring the world around me and coming to a better understanding of the people I interact with every day.
What do you do in your free time?
TV is my current hobby of choice. It’s great to study TV writing and learn from it, but it’s nice to sometimes give my brain a break after a long day of writing. I also hit the gym, read, cook, or spend time with my wife and four teenaged kids.
Is it true that anyone can be a writer?
Yes, absolutely! Writing is just about putting words on a page, so it’s something anyone can do. You can be good with practice and experience. But it takes a combination of raw talent, experience, and a whole lot of hard work to make a GREAT writer.
What books have influenced your life the most?
I’d have to say there are a few: The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis, The Stormlight Archives by Brandon Sanderson, Night Angel by Brent Weeks, and The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch. Those have all been directly influential on both my worldview and my approach to crafting great novels.
Of all the books you have published thus far, which one are you proudest of?
I’d have to say that Thief of the Night Guild (Queen of Thieves Book 2) is probably the one I’ve loved the most. It takes a deep dive into the psyche of abuse victims, all wrapped up in an Ocean’s Eleven-style bank heist and adventure story. It was a very raw, personal story that I’m so glad I managed to write right.
Where can readers learn more about you?
Everywhere that media is social!