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Monday, September 1, 2008

An Interview with J. Scott Savage

Tomorrow I'll post my review of Farworld, and you'll have a chance to win the book, but since J. Scott Savage was so good as to get back to me today, here's our interview:

Hi, I hope things are going well for you. Everywhere you look, Farworld is making it's rounds across the book blogging world and it sounds like there has been a lot of positive buzz so far. Knowing I'm going to be one of the last bloggers interviewing you, I'm going to make this short and sweet. In fact, you only have to answer 6 questions today. First of all, let's lay the scene. Have you ever been to Minnesota before?

I have. I love going there in the summer. Not so much in the winter.

I don't love the winter either, and I would go out of my way to avoid it, but unfortunately growing up here, it is a little harder to leave. There is a reason retired Minnesotans become snowbirds and spend the winter down south. Anyhow, one of the best things about my home state, Minnesota summers is sitting out by the lake. So for our interview, that's where we'll be. I just hope you brought bug spray.

Perfect! Since we are bringing bug spray, I assume it is summer.

To start with, how did you first get the idea for Farworld?

For me, when I write a book, it’s never one idea. It’s a series of ideas that come together. Years ago I wrote a short story about a wizard and warrior that go in search of a child legend says will save his world. Then I got an idea about a boy and girl that could jump worlds. Eventually the pieces just fell into the same simmering pot and formed a story. Once I started writing it though, I realized there was much more to the story than I thought.

Do you have a favorite scene from the book? Please share!

I’ve always kind of liked the scene where MT hits Marcus in the head with a stick. It just makes me laugh that the wizard is finally about to teach you magic. You have all these crazy cool ideas about what is coming: wands, magic words, secret knowledge, and instead he hits you in the head with a stick. It makes me laugh every time I think about it. I also like the battle scene.

In your opinion, what is the best cure for writer's block?

I know some people say, “Just write your way through it.” But for me, writers block is your subconscious telling you that something in your story is broken. I go back and read from the beginning until I realize where I took a wrong turn. (It’s not always a wrong turn. But something is not working.) Then I fix it and move on.

Do you have any special plans to celebrate on the release date for Farworld?

The problem with celebrating the release is that with a first national book, you don’t get a hard release date. Stores generally just start selling the book when they get it. You can’t demand a hard date until you are more popular. But I am having a big release party on the 13th at the Spanish Fork, UT library with free posters, food, drawings, etc.

So how did you get the idea to mount such a massive campaign using bloggers? It seems like I can't turn my head without seeing your name out there in blogland.

Well I knew Shadow Mountain was going to do their marketing things, sending ARCs to national reviewers. But I wanted to try my own grass roots campaign. These days, so many people have blogs, and the reviews are of such high quality that I generally seek blogs out first when looking for a new book or author. I’ve had a ball doing it and I don’t think I could have dreamed of getting better overall feedback.

A quirky thing not many people know about you is:

How about three things? I was a mall Santa when I was 15. I got engaged after dating my wife for only 13 days. (We’ve been married for twenty-one years.) I am a huge Disney fan. We go to a Disney park on average a couple of times a year, and we live clear out in Utah, so it’s a drive.

Again, thanks for the ARC and I'll be posting a review of your book shortly.

Thanks so much! And thanks for your patience.


Alice Teh said...

Great interview, Kim!

I especially like the part where he has high regards for blogs when it comes to reviews. Also nice to read about writer's block - I really never thought of it that way but it makes sense. Also love the three facts, especially about meeting the love of his life. *GRIN*

Trish said...

Wasn't this interview fun? Scott is such a personable guy! I also asked him something similar about writer's block and I think his answer is a really smart one--about the plot being broken and needing to be fixed. Makes perfect sense but I've never thought about it that way before.

Melody said...

I enjoyed reading your interview with J. Scott Savage, Kim!

Yes, I like his answer about writer's block too! Very clever and oh so true. :) I can't wait to read your review on his book.

Debi said...

Great interview! He really seems like such a great guy, consistently throughout everyone's interviews. I just know I'll be buying his book!