Interview with Rory Surtain, Author of FIREFANGED: Demon in Exile
15 Dec 2020
What can you tell us about your new release, FIREFANGED: Demon in Exile?
It’s my debut novel and first in the Demon in Exile series. It’s been described as “genre-bending” which can be viewed as a flaw or a boon. At first glance, it fits into the demon-slaying fantasy fiction niche, but it’s written much more like a coming-of-age adventure drama with paranormal and military themes. Yes, that’s a lot, perhaps too much, but folks that have read it, those that that wouldn’t even look at it based on its cover or its demon theme (“where are the vampires?”), find it greatly entertaining and are hooked by the end of the second book in the series.
Some may find it a bit darker than your average fantasy fiction, but it has a balance and a strong emotional pull.
What or who inspired you to become an author?
Working in the corporate world for 30+ years, I craved the freedom to do something new. Like many authors, I have a built in creativity gene and behind the scenes experience in writing and editing. With the Self-publishing platforms available today, I realized there was a path forward where my stories could see the light of day.
What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?
My favorites are all books that have a series to enjoy and a strong, perhaps flawed, central character:
The Lymond Chronicles by Dorothy Dunnett
With Fire and Sword by Henryk Sienkiewicz
The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe
Eisenhorn by Dan Abnett
The Wisdom’s Grave Trilogy by Craig Schaefer
What’s your favorite thing about writing?
The inspiration that moves the scene in directions I’d never considered. In life, we often ignore the hints or the opportunities to go someplace new, but in words, I am free to follow them elsewhere
What is a typical day like for you?
My profession is writing and my hobby is writing, so I’m at it seven days a week. I really enjoy art and photography and create my own book covers (yes, I realize that I’m not following the formula there), so I usually start the day working with on those, moving my brain into a creative mode before I get to writing. Then I swap between writing, editing, or proof-reading for the next 8 or 10 hours across different books. With the recent soft launch of my first two books, I am more and more paying attention to the marketing and advertising requirements. It’s a learning experience.
What scene from FIREFANGED: Demon in Exile was your favorite to write?
Early in the book, Ara, the MC and narrator, is dragged before an Inquisitor to be cross-examined about how he survived a recent demon attack. The MC is 17 years old at the time and still feeling the effects of a demonic assassin’s claws. As Ara struggles through the confrontation with the authorities, working out what is happening, you first start to perceive who he is on a deeper level and how he views himself. It lays the foundation for the MC’s inner conflict that follows him the rest of the book.
Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?
“Forgive the world.”
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