Monday, April 23, 2012

Overkill Blog Tour: Writing an aged Hero by Steven Shrewsbury

Dear Readers,

today Edi's Book Lighthouse is the blog stop on the

It all began with Thrall (pb, 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-09780983108634] by Steven Shrewsbury. I reviewed the first novel starring the aging warrior Gorias La Gaul. Thrall ends with the following words: THE END ?

Fortunately the answer has been NO.
In December 2011 followed the release of two short stories:

Author and Finisher of Our Flesh by Steven L. Shrewsbury (Blood & Steel: Legends of La Gaul Collection) [ebook, where to buy] my review
Insurmountable by Steven L. Shrewsbury
(Blood & Steel: Legends of La Gaul Collection)
[ebook, where to buy] my review.

And now Overkill (pb, 2012) [ISBN-13: 978-1937929800] by Steven Shrewsbury is in the starting blocks. Yes, this is the sceond full novel starring Gorias La Gaul.

When I have been asked to be part of the Overkill blog tour I agreed with pleasure because it delivered me the perfect opportunity to get a detailed answer to a specific question. I wanted to know why Steven Shrewsbury chose to write about an aged hero.
I got my answer in form of a guest post which I share today with you.

Here we go:

by Steven L. Shrewsbury

Someone asked me why I made Gorias La Gaul (the flawed hero of OVERKILL and THRALL) 700 years old. Seeing as both works are set in an antediluvian age where most everyone lives to be near to 900, I wanted a guy that’d lived a long time, lots of trail dust and even more than sixty years could provide. True, he’s seen and done a lot in his aging body, and frankly, this would provide an endless amount of back-story. No, I didn’t vomit this saga out in one volume but don’t intend to write a series where each one is so interlocked a casual reader can’t grab one and enjoy the stand-alone tale.

I also made him older as I wanted limits on his ability. Gorias can actually get tired, and thus it tests my creativity to get him out of a situation. In THRALL he battles a man of superior ability at a slave caravan. He must use his guile to defeat him, not just his badass strength.

Another reader asked if I created Gorias older as I’m not in my twenties any more. Frankly, I haven’t written for my own age group ever. There may be a few legs on that theory as one’s mortality can bring about fears, perhaps small, but they manifest in strange ways. Giving my main character the usual aches and pains of life makes for a real read, I wager. I oft say, “I’m not over the hill, but I can see the base coming up fast.”

Let’s face it: Most fantasy stories are in pretty hard to swallow realms anyway. I set mine, usually, in a lost sliver of our own Earth’s history, thus, the sky is blue, the seasons roll and there’s one sun in the sky. However, among the dragons, odd creatures and weird magicks I try to make the characters as real as possible, Gorias is older, not a real paladin by any means, and he runs into bad seeds. Having a series of characters motivated by petty greed, or flaws in their character makes for interesting tales, I think. Not every bad character is really bad, certainly not in their own opinion.

Nosmada, the dark lord in THRALL isn’t evil in his mind and just trying too appeasing his God’s wrath albeit in a bizarre way. The motivations of Queen Garnet in OVERKILL seem starchy and elitist, yet Gorias goes along for the ride. The diverse groups he meets, the religious maniacs or pirates, military men and warriors, all have their own agenda. If Gorias were a teen on his first adventure, I doubt he’d have made it through the opening chapters with any realism attached. Plus, his long history makes him a target. Many want to kill Gorias to be a part of his legend, a portion of that bar song, like he relates, “The part where I get killed.”

700 years of life won’t give a character a TWILIGHT glittery glow, but the rough surface left by such time is a canvas I chose to paint on, usually with material drawn from the hearts of fallen foes.

I hope you enjoyed the guest post as much as I did.
In case you have missed the other blog tour stops you don't need to worry. Of course I deliver you the list of all Overkill blog tour stops:

April 20 Watch Play Read

April 21 SpecMusicMuse

April 22 Splash of Our Worlds

April 23 Edi's Book Lighthouse

April 24 Sci-Fi Guys Book Review

April 25 Jess Resides Here

April 26 Book Den

April 27 That Book Place Blog

April 28 Urban Fantasy Reviews

April 29 Evie Bookish

April 30 Eva's Sanctuary

May 1 Azure Dwarf Horde of Sci-Fi & Fantasy

May 2 Darlene's Book Nook

May 3 Ginger Nuts of Horror

May 4 Ali's Bookshelf

May 5 The Magick Pen

May 6 Book and Movie Dimension Blog

May 7 The Cabin Goddess

May 8 Bee's Knees Reviews

May 9 I Smell Sheep

May 10 Once Upon A Time

May 11 Ritesh Kala's Book Review

May 12 Goatfairy Review Blog

May 13 Fantasy Book Review

May 14 Babs Book Bistro


RaveAir said...

This book looks interesting. Gorias was a great character in the mentioned short stories.

ediFanoB said...


I liked the first book and the short stories a lot.
I'm really interested in how the story continues.

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