J: With me today is paranormal Author and Professor of Exercise Physiology, Stanley P. Brown. Thus far, he’s published 3 novels, Fallen Wizard, Veiled Memory and The Legacy (links below) with one on the way for release November 16, 2019. He hails from Starkville, MS, and ever the gentleman, I’m told his better half is the brilliant Dr. Yvonne Zerangue.
J: Welcome, Stanley! Tell us a little more about you as a person, hobbies, family, plans to win a Pulitzer prize or take over the world?
S: I am a college professor and head of the department of kinesiology at Mississippi State university. This professor gig of mine has been going on for 30 years. It is quite boring, but I do love the students and interacting with brilliant people (my faculty). My fiction writing is my hobby which I plan to do into retirement (whenever that happens). Hopefully God gives me the years to write many more novel as I have 4 distinct mythologies I am working on. My other hobby is to simply stay healthy, which I do by exercising daily. I enjoy being with my wife, Yvonne, traveling with her, and I enjoy seeing our three grown daughters and my one (so far) son-in-law.
J: And on the literary side, what do you most enjoy about being an author?
S: I really enjoy the creative process. It’s just me and the blank page. Being a fictionalist is totally different than publishing as a scientist. When publishing research or even textbooks (which I’ve done) it’s you, the blank page, AND the scientific literature you’re using, trying to understand and shed new light on. It’s a very arduous process, much harder than fiction. HOWEVER, fiction is much harder in other ways. It was very hard to break into publishing novels and I still haven’t achieved the big five.
J: You and me both! Regardless, you’ve seen success in traditional publishing. What’s your secret?
S: Let me just say that to write fiction well you have to learn the craft well and to do that you have to write a ton and read a ton. Then the editing begins and never ends. Being an Indie author, marketing is an unforeseen necessity I wish I didn’t have to do, but c’est la vie.
J: Great advice! Read a ton… and as I always say, writers are generally the most voracious demographic of readers. With that, what do you like to read?
S: Tough question. I read very widely in fiction. I think that’s important if your goal in genre writing is to mix it up. For fantasy, since I’m promoting Fallen Wizard in this interview, I’d have to say Philip Pullman. His book, The Golden Compass, is a beautiful work and deep as all get out.
J: So, tell me what’s your favorite genre to write? And how’d you decide on that particular genre?
S: Favorite and only (so far) is paranormal. I wanted to write mixed genre so I tend to blend. This is true of my two adult novels. However, the children’s novel, Fallen Wizard, is all fantasy. Also, I like to stick to stuff in the real world. So, I’ll use place names that work. In Fallen Wizard, however, the characters start in this world then end up in a literal fantasy land.
J: That sounds exciting! More on Fallen Wizard in just a moment. When did you start writing?
S: I can nail that down for fiction. It was March 2005 when I decided to attempt to write a novel. Of course, my job as a professor involves writing and publishing, so I’d been doing that already for at least a couple of decades, and even as a student.
J: Wow, that’s fairly precise. I’d imagine it was an important day. On to the important stuff, tell us about your most recent novel, Fallen Wizard
S: Peter Michaels is an average American, twelve-year-old boy. He loves his friends, his mom and dad, even his sisters. What he most wants in life is to make the all-star team in the summer league. That’s his goal. One summer afternoon on his way home from a Saturday practice session the most unusual thing that has ever happened to him (and there have been lots of unusual things in his young life) is that an old man apparently falls out of the sky and onto his front lawn. And he’s alive, but hurt. But that can’t happen, right? He lands next to the big azalea in Peter’s front yard and suddenly the bush animates and starts beating the unfortunate old man. Peter helps him, reluctantly, into his house and onto his bed. Then the problems really begin because comforting a dying wizard marks you. The old man dies right there and disappears. With the aid of his best friends, Raven Dakota and Stumpy Simpkins, they try to make sense of the event only to fall head long into an adventure that tests their friendship and their wits. It takes place initially in my childhood hometown of Plaquemine, Louisiana, but quickly moves to Ireland then to the mythical City of Air – Sha-oo-el. The book is meant to be a series and my inspiration was the great children’s literature of Pullman, Rowling, and others. The series is open ended. I’ve only just started the next book to be called, The Moons of Sha-oo-el.
J: Outstanding! I’ve read an excerpt of this and can tell you that’s it’s certainly worth the price of admission. I’m sure a number of fans would like to connect, how do we follow you?
S: You can find me online at spbrownbooks.com, at my author page on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/stanbrownauthor/), on Twitter @StanleyPBrown, and at my Amazon author page (https://www.amazon.com/Stanley-P.-Brown/e/B001ITW0DM). My publisher is Black Opal Books, found here (https://blackopalbooks.com/). My next book will be published November 16, 2019. It is titled, The Ruby Ring, and is the second of The Stonehenge Chronicles trilogy (the first is Veiled Memory). My current work in progress is a short story called, Blood Moon, being written for the next #WolfPackAuthors anthology. Blood Moon is set in the immediate aftermath of The Legacy, which is my debut novel. My other work in progress is a children’s animal adventure story called, The Captain of Tally Ho, which I hope to finish by the end of the year.