Interview with Lloyd Jeffries, Author of A Measure of Rhyme
03 Aug 2023
What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write A Measure of Rhyme?
I was inspired to write these books as I was traveling over the Bogan Bridge in Pensacola, Florida. For a long time, I’d been thinking about legends and myths and how biblical lore effects society today. I was also wondering about current events and the end times as written in Revelation. While listening to NPR, the idea hit me like a bolt of lightning. Cain, the Earth’s first murderer and his punishment of immortality. What if Cain was still on Earth? What would he be doing? What was his history and how does that affect the planet? From there, it was twelve years of writing, military deployments and life, until A Portion of Malice was complete. What followed was beyond anything I could’ve ever dreamed.
If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of A Measure of Rhyme, what would they be?
Cain – Demolition Man, The Police. Cain’s a wrecking ball and that song suits him perfectly.
Emery – Thunderstruck, by AC/DC. Again, if anyone was ever, truly thunderstruck, it’s our beloved Emery.
Rhyme – Mountain Climbing, Joe Bonamassa. A perfect blues song and one Rhyme thinks of often.
Igneus – Long Time Gone, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Igneus is finally coming into his own, and that’s been a long time coming.
Longinus – The Rooster, Alice in Chains. “Ain’t found a way to kill me yet.” A great lyric and that’s Longinus in a nutshell.
What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?
I tend to read everything. Always in search of a good story, I don’t put much thought into genre and I get easily bored with the same tropes (ex-FBI agent, Former CIA operative, etc). I like a good story. Whether that’s a family biopic or something set in outer space or a psychological thriller. Give me interesting characters and a clever plot. Give me flawed people pushed to the very edge of their limits. Give me turmoil! But above all, engage my brain and make me think about everything long after I’ve finished reading. I hate genres and view them as a bottleneck for creativity. I’m not interested in writing a 30-book series. I’m interested in writing a story that knocks your socks off and gets in your head. That’s what I like to read. That’s what I write. If you like a good story, you’ll love my books.
What books are on your TBR pile right now?
Just finished “The Complete works of Sherlock Holmes” by Arthur Conan Doyle. Seems every few years I have to return to those. I’ve got some overdue Shakespeare on my list and have been longing to read Dickens again in any form. As far as current books, “Fairy Tale” by Stephen King is there, as well as finishing the Kingsbridge series by Ken Follet. Sadly, I’ve exhausted all my Michael Crichton collection and worn it dog eared. Now there was a guy who could tell a story.
What scene in your book was your favorite to write?
The climax to A Measure of Rhyme was great fun to imagine and write. Our beloved antihero, Emery, gets a front row seat to events like the world has never seen as he and Longinus struggle with a weapon of epic power while everything hangs in the balance. A great, edge of your seat scene and an awesome awe inspiring change in the characters.
Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)
Good question: I guess my biggest quirk is that I can sit around for days or weeks and not write a word, just waiting for that first, perfect sentence to hit me. When that happens, the dam bursts and it’s on full blast. I both love and hate that. I love the nature of the spontaneity of that but hate when the firehose turns on at three in the morning.
Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?
When my daughter was six, she was playing in the backyard and climbed atop an eagle statue we had at the top of a landscaped waterfall. Looking up at her, I asked, “Oh great and wise one, what is the meaning of life?” Without missing a beat, she said. “So you can be trusted, learn your lessons, and have fun.” Although I asked in jest, the universe saw fit to send its message through a wonderful child. That’s always stuck with me and I contemplate her words often. If I had to pick another one, it would be “Follow the right.” I’ve found that when I do that, wonderful things happen.
If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?
That’s a tough question as my books touch on all variety of genres and lore. But, if forced to try and put it all in a nutshell, my answer is that I would want them to open their eyes. To see the manipulations and evil of every day. To realize that they have a choice in how to act, what to think, how to treat others. That they can reject the negative and focus on those things that make this planet bearable. Namely, goodness, intent, love, humility. Like my beloved antihero, Emery Merrick, I’d like them to come away with a sense of the struggle being worth it. A sense of self reflection and how everyone’s actions are largely determined by excuses and rationalizations. I want them to think “I can do better”, “I can choose better”, “I can live my life on my own terms and choose the harder path, the path not worn”. I’d like them to realize and take stock of what’s important to them, then own those choices and act accordingly.
Lloyd Jeffries is the author of the new book A Measure of Rhyme (Ages of Malice Book II)
Connect with Lloyd JeffriesAuthor Site
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