Sci-fi, fantasy, and writing--who could ask for more?

Category: Interviews, Podcasts (Page 5 of 5)

Episode 14 – Robert Treskillard

Also known as the one with the Tartan!

61fr9mpxykl-_ux250_This week we had Robert Treskillard as our guest. He’s a swordsmithing writer of Merlinean and Arthurian fantasy. His latest book is Merlin’s Nightmare.

When we weren’t fighting with squeals, snarls, and bad connections we discussed how to give characters authentic names. The mythology of Merlin was discussed and theories about Stonehenge flew! (And on the bad connections issue, you will not notice it as our guest graciously re-recorded all of our bad patches–and trust me, if you’d heard the raw file, it was BAD. We wouldn’t have been comfortable putting that out for public consumption, so thank you so much, Robert!)

512b2bpbls59l-_sx331_bo1204203200_Robert’s answer to our superhero question broke a trend, and drew some oohs and aahs from your dedicated hosts.

Due to the above mentioned snarls, we were only able to record one half of our normal podcast. We hope to catch up with Robert again in the near future to discuss his writing process. So stay tuned for that!


Robert Treskillard
Merlin’s Nightmare
Stephen Lawhead
Andrew Peterson
L.B. Graham
Douglass Bond
Starship Troopers

Episode 14 Audio

Episodes 12 & 13 – Grace Bridges

2014-05-30 19.05.41This week we interview the Space Kiwi, Grace Bridges. (10 nerd points for everyone who knows why she has that nickname!)

We start off with Aaron knowing who he is for once… sort of…

The Week Of Firsts continues, as we don’t emediently imediently imediantly right away start off down a rabbit trail! (I know, I can’t believe it either! – Aaron)
Ah, that’s better, a side discussion on philosophy. Much better…

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for: The question “Is there an author who’s favorite superhero ISN’T Batman?” has been answered! (You’ll have to listen to the podcast to find out who…)

We talk about favorite movies, and Aaron brings up Earth Star Voyager… and no one else has ever heard of it. Sigh. Grace’s favorite captain is no surprise to any of us. Aaron opines about Voyager, but does state that Season 3, Episode 7, “Sacred Ground” is one of the best hours of sci-fi ever, except for one tiny flaw…

In part two, we start things off right. That’s right, we’re immediately sidetracked talking about tea. (And Aaron manages to insult Liberty’s favorite–Earl Grey–while she’s drinking it.)

Grace next mentions here favorite book, and we follow that up with a discussion of the metric system. (No, the two are not related… at all…)

We manage to ask a few relevant questions, before we get sidetracked by cats (which Liberty may or may not have edited out.) Then we talk about marketing, which Grace does know something about. You’ll have to listen to figure out how to get more people to open your e-mails…

Links to Things of No Interest That We May Have Blathered On About For A Bit:



Episodes 10 & 11 with Ben Wolf

This week we interview Ben Wolf (who is, sadly, not an actual wolf). Ben doesn’t know81omtdtpkul-_ux250_ what he wants to be when he grows up, as he has authored vampire novels, children’s novels, and, of course, westerns. He’s also a flash-fiction magazine publisher, and a freelance editor.

Listen to Episode 10 here:

We got off on a rabbit trail faster then ever before (but hey, you interview a Wolf, you gotta expect them to chase rabbits.)

After that, we did eventually get around to discussing I’d Punch a Lion in His Eye for You (or, for short, IPAL (not to be confused with an Apple product.)) We also discuss his Christian Horror book, Blood for Blood. This naturally lead to a discussion of the differences between writing children books and novels.grow old

We also learn that Ben is terrified of sharks (makes sense, Wolves are land animals, and sharks live in the water…) and how that ties into IPAL (see pages 17 and 18.)

At some point here, Ben calls Aaron fabulously immature. (What? So I like kids books…) … and then you’ll never guess who Ben’s favorite superhero is…

Speaking of immature, who might wear a tutu??

Listen to episode 11 here:

In the second part, we have a rare moment of lucidity and discuss the differences between plotters and pantsers, and why all four of us are hybrid writers. Ben then gave some details 51dc9udyjbl-_sx318_bo1204203200_on his unique outlining/writing method.

Thankfully, the lucid moment passed, and we got kinda off-track again when talking about snacks, and why Ben is now sadly caffeine-free 🙁  (on that note, I’ve just run out of Skittles while typing these notes – Aaron) We then shift into familiar rabbit trial territory and Ben talks about making bets with his future fiancee (Aaron, Josh, and Liberty are all married, and caution Ben never to mention this in public… oops…)

Next, we, ah, well, it’s probably a good thing Ben’s not on with us on every episode, or we’d never make any sense…

Ben talks about his experiences using Kickstarter to fund IPAL, and what he’s learned from that. And, to wrap things up, we talk about why authors should never do their own book covers. (Well, unless you’re a graphic designer or something…)

Things we talked about:

Ben Wolf
I’d Punch a Lion In the Eye For You
Blood For Blood
ACFW Conferences
Ben Powell (author and illustrator for Ben’s children’s book)
Frank Peretti (The Oath)
Robert Liparulo
Tosca Lee
Ted Dekker
Randy Ingermanson (Writing Fiction for Dummies)
Chris Morris, CPA.

Episodes 8 & 9 with Jeff Gerke

This week we welcome novelist, publisher, and editor; the one and only Jeff Gerke.a1kntcyxqrl-_ux250_

In part one, we make a LOT of Star Wars references (is Jeff or Aaron the bigger fan?) We also come really close to getting Liberty to enter a giggle feedback loop. (Remember: breath in, giggle out. Without this advice, Liberty might have passed out!)

We even discuss some matters of actual importance, such as the frustrating and contradictory “Rules of Writing”, and more importantly, how, when, and why to ignore them. There’s even neuroscience behind it, not kidding! Yes, you too can use this technique to make your books as addictive as crack for the low monthly price of… free?? Yes, FREE! Check out the giveaway farther down on this post…

And Jeff continues our trend for authors who love Batman as their favorite superhero. Will we find someone who prefers another hero? You’ll have to come back for future episodes to find out…

41jp2lwgyel-_uy250_In part the second, Jeff talks about writers that are either plot first (typically plotting writers) and character first (pantser writers.)

We also talk more about freeing yourself from the rules of fiction (Aaron does interrupt with a rule that can’t be broken…) Jeff talks about his writing process, how it has evolved over the past 20 years, and how he keeps his writing flow going.

And, to the surprise of absolutely no one, we get off track and talk about Star Wars again! (and Lord of the Rings, and a few others…) But, to the surprise of all of us, there is a point to it! (Really, not kidding!) These stories, and chances are, a lot of other ones you love, all use the Hero’s Journey. Don’t know what that is? Want to know how it influenced Jeff as a writer? Listen to the podcast…

Still confused, want more? Don’t worry,  Jeff is available as a freelance editor and typesetter. Check out his website for details and pricing… do it… you know you want to…

Wait, you’re wanting the giveaway, right? Well click this handy-dandy link and all of the ways to enter will be displayed for you! Enter early, enter often, and share with your friends. 🙂

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Links to things we discussed:
Jeff Gerke
The Irresistible Novel
Plot Vs. Character
The Art & Craft of Writing Christian Fiction
Jung’s Archetypes
Joseph Campbell’s Hero With a Thousand Faces
Aristotle’s Rhetoric
Raymond Feist’s The Magician
Bernard Cornwell (Arthur Trilogy)
Nadine Brandes
Kerry Nietz
Jill Williamson
Mark Schooly
Sharon Hinck
Morgan Busse
John Otte
Steve Raza
Just B. Jordan


Links to the show:

Episode 7 & 7.5: The Star Wars Bonus Episode

12509403_530637840443972_4593858077574301851_nSo we decided that we couldn’t ignore Star Wars 7: The Force Awakens, (Read: “Liberty FINALLY saw it…”) and it deserved its own episode. Ironically–and we didn’t plan this–it coincided as our 7th episode!

We got off to a rip-roaring start, launching immediately into what we didn’t like about the movie, but that quickly shifted into analysis of the story, what we loved, and what we hope to see in Episodes 8 & 9.

But beware of the rants! Each of us launch into at least a couple, although I’m pretty sure Aaron is the rant-master as he occupied the floor much of the time. But he made a lot of good points, and I think you’ll find his insight into the movies valuable. He’s our resident Star Wars expert, having read much more in the expanded universe than Josh and I combined. I mean, look at how he made an impression on both Josh and I when we met in August 2015:


If you aren’t laughing uproariously with us by the end of both of the episodes, you may want to check if you have a pulse. We sure enjoyed doing this episode, and are contemplating doing analysis of future movies…although both the guys won’t be going to see Deadpool, so don’t get your hopes up about that one. (I’m still weighing it, but I won’t do a podcast without Josh and Aaron.) Isn’t Guardians of the Galaxy 2 coming out this summer…?

10548837_10153188588877397_6928215781338276545_oFor convenience sake, we did break this up into two parts, however if you leap from 1 to 2 immediately, it will make a lot more sense. We don’t recommend listening to 7.5 before you listen to 7.

Be sure to let us know what you think in the comments or send us an e-mail!

Links to things we discussed:
Star Wars: Aftermath (book that takes place between ROTJ and TFA)
The novelization of the movie
Huffington Post 40 Plot holes article
Star Wars fan “debunks” 40 Plot holes article
– and calls everyone who doesn’t agree with him an idiot
Pre-order Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Emo Kylo Ren on Twitter
Very Lonely Luke on Twitter
Darth Jar Jar Theory
Star Wars: Rebels (Animated TV Series)
Star Wars: Clone Wars (Animated TV Series)
Star Wars: Clone Wars (Animated Movie)

Direct Download links to the podcast:
Episode 7: The Force Awakens
Episode 7.5: The Return of the Podcast

Episodes 5 & 6 with K.M. Weiland

This week on the podcast we’re thrilled to have historical/speculative author and all-around writing guru, K.M. Weiland. We covered a lot of ground in both episodes, so it’s well worth a listen!

mainavatar2A good deal of our first podcast revolves around Katie’s new book, Storming, which I (Liberty) highly recommend. It’s a great introduction to the dieselpunk subgenre, and besides that, a very enjoyable read. Katie discusses why she set the story in her hometown, and how fun it was to dig into her town’s history. She also talks about some of her story research, which revolves heavily around barnstorming and the absolutely insane stunts people pulled back in the day when barnstorming was popular. She gives some examples, which I think stunned all three of us. Perhaps it will surprise you as well.

Storming coverIn the second podcast, we discuss Katie’s extensive outlining and editing processes. If you’ve never had a chance to read Outlining Your Novel or Structuring Your Novel, you’re in for an eye-opening interview. When we say it’s extensive…well, let’s just say that we were only able to hit the highlights of her process. There’s a reason why it takes three years for her to put out a new novel!

Katie also shares a bit about her overall marketing strategy, and how to set your writing as a priority. Both pieces are very informative and thought-provoking.

As always, we have a lot of laughs, talk about fandoms and superheroes, and wander off-topic a bit.

Thanks so much to K.M. Weiland for joining us! We hope she’ll be back in the future.

Links to things discussed:
K.M. Weiland
Helping Writers Become Authors
Outlining Your Novel
Timothy Zahn – Thrawn Trilogy
I, Jedi by Michael A. Stackpole
Orson Scott Card
Charles Dickens
Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin Series
Realm Makers
The Creative Penn

Episode 5
Episode 6