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December 30, 2012 / minusbar

Author Interview: Ander Louis (The Liberation of Sundrian CIty)

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Earlier this week, Ander Louis took some time of his busy schedule to sit down for interrogation with me. After severe torture, he finally broke down and spilled some juice about everything from character back stories and future novels, along with some amazing randomness.

For convenience sake, the following has been abbreviated.

Ander – A          Me – R         The Liberation of Sundrian City – TLoSC

A Daily Dose of R&R is happy to have Ander Louis, the author of “The Liberation of Sundrian City” with us today.

R: Ander, first can you tell us a bit about yourself?

A: First, I’m Happy to be here!

A: About me….Sure…. 26/Male/Australia 😉

A: Wait, are you old enough, Roger, to remember the old A/S/L days of random internet chatrooms?

R: I am 23, and I definitely remember those days, infamously.

A: Haha, creepy old internet days…

R: Many a night I found myself hitting on a less than desirable person thanks to AOL’s misguidance.

A: About me, I used to be a Business Analyst and a bass guitarist in a rock back, and then I gave both of them up and started writing novels.

R: Any particular reason why you chose to make War Elephants such a large cornerstone to your debut novel?  They’re awesome, and I enjoyed reading about them.

A: I was reading about war elephants and came to learn about the real history of them and how they worked was really fascinating, and they were almost like something from a fantasy novel without even having to embellish.

A: Also, the concept of musth rampages was interesting (look up some youtube clips, it is crazy!) and just elephants in general.

A: I loved the emotional bonds between them and their relationships to humans.

A:  Also, a lot of the elephant gear in the book isn’t too far exaggerated – just a little bit of creative licensing applied!

R: Sounds pretty interesting. I’ll definitely have to check some of those videos out for myself and get back to you. Unfortunately, like you once noted in another interview, the first thing that popped into my head when I think of war elephants is the scene from Lord of the Rings.

A: Ah yeah, that is an awesome scene – in the film when Legolas takes down the big one – I remember the people in the cinema cheered in that bit, which never happens in Australia!

A: To be honest, the influence wasn’t drawn from LOTR – I’ve never read those books and once people read my book they will see my take on war elephants is very different!

A: Perhaps I shouldn’t be admitting that I’ve never read LOTR! Haha.

R: It was quite evident you went for a more brutal take on elephants when I saw how executions were done…

A: You know, those executions are based on real life too.

R: I assumed as much, but it’s crazy to imagine that type of judiciary system today.

A: Oh, not the judiciary system, that’s fictional. But when war elephants were used to execute people, the riders had more control over the elephants as they would have over a horse. More precision.

A: Furthermore, they could control the trunk too…and the elephants are quite smart – they knew what they were doing. If the rider wanted to torture the criminal for the crowd’s pleasure, the elephant knew not to step on any vital organs until the rider wanted it to

R: Pardon my French, but Damn…

A: Yeah! See what I mean, sounds like fiction! When I was reading all this I was thinking “wow, this almost writes itself!”

R: I’m sure a lot of authors wish it was so. What part of writing this was the most difficult for you?

A: the hardest was the filler – let me explain.

A: Before I started writing this, I plotted out the novel for a full month, marking out all the major and minor plot points through the story. What I never did, however, was plan what happened in between those plot points! And, as you can imagine, the build up to a plot point and the repercussions from the last plot point (the filler, for lack of a better term) makes up a large portion of the book. So I kept finding myself getting to those in between parts and being completely unprepared and at a loss as to what to write.

R: Did you ever catch yourself wanting to go off on a tangent when writing certain “in between” scenes? I only ask because I found several of your supporting characters very interesting, and personally would have enjoyed learning more about them.

A: Hmm, no I don’t think so. I try to keep detail fairly minimal but consistent – that way a character can seem deep and intriguing even though you know little about him or her. It also allows the reader to project their imagination into the story, which I find important.

R: That’s a great way of putting it. I guess it makes sense for a mute not to tell all his secrets.

A: Garresh has a whole life behind him that I’d love to tell.

R: I’m so glad you said that! He was, by far, my favorite part of the book. I know you’ve stated this was to be a standalone novel, but I would love a prequel of his story.

A: I think his past was a bit too dark for this novel though. The same goes for the history of the city and how it came to exist.

R: Any chance we’ll see that story one day?

A: Yeah, sure there is! I don’t think it will be a prequel, but maybe another story set in the same world which might include a younger Garresh – or maybe some kind of promotional short story about him.

A: Hmm, hey, stop putting ideas in my head; I’ve got enough to get done! Haha.

R: Well, since I’ve got you on the topic of yet to be released novels. Can you tell me anything about this sophomore novel mentioned at the end of TLoSC?

A: I sure can – it’s part one of a duology called “A Duet For Swans”, which is a fantasy novel too, but a little different style. It is inspired by the films of Hayao Miyazaki, and has a more sentimental and bittersweet sort of feel to it.

A: The story is about a boy who has magic powers growing inside him, who travels across the land in a flying tugboat looking for the ocean. Oh, and hey, how would you like to get a VERY advanced peek at the cover art!?

R: I definitely do! The cover art for TLoSC was gorgeous.

A: Oh thanks! Jimmy Manton did the cover artwork on the first one, very talented dude, also a fellow Melbournian. Google him and check out his stuff!

R: I definitely will!

A: Feast your eyes!

(Tune in for cover art image coming soon. Trust me, it’s amazing and worth the wait!)

R: I must say, that cover art is gorgeous and definitely worth the wait for anyone not lucky enough to see it yet!

R: I appreciate your taking the time to discuss your work with me, and I’ve enjoyed the tidbits and spoilers about your future work! Before I let you go, there’s just one thing I must ask! The silly question!

R: So here it goes…   Ander Louis, you’ve just found a genie. What are your three wishes?

A: Oh gosh. Let’s think…

A: Sex, money, power?! Haha.

R: Wise words from a wise man.

A: Haha, terrible answer.

R: Haha, but it was funny!

A: I’d wish for a better handle on language to better express my thoughts, more time to write, and to meet John Frusciante.

R:  Ander, you’ve got good taste. The Red Hot Chili Peppers own a portion of my soul.

A: Mine too my friend…  Mine too.

Interested in the book? Head over to ( http://www.facebook.com/AnderLouis ) now for information on purchasing the novel. Or, if you act fast, there’s currently a chance to win a free copy via the 12 days of Christmas giveaway still going on!

Anyone you all want to hear interviewed? Have crazy questions you want asked? Chime in and share! Who knows, I just may use em. Hmm, who shall I interview next?! >:D

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