Tag Archives: science fiction

An Interview with A.D. Bloom

One of the benefits of belonging to a writer’s group is the opportunity to meet talented writers. Aaron Bloom is a fellow member of the West Hartford (CT) Fiction Writers Group. He is an inventive and imaginative writer. Here is my interview with him as he has published a new science fiction fantasy, The Bone Blade Girl.

An Interview with A.D. Bloom, author of The Bone Blade Girl

This month readers get their first look at A.D. Bloom’s new, 111 page, science fantasy novella, The Bone Blade Girl (Stitch: Book One). I took the opportunity to ask this Indie author about his main character – an ultra-violent eleven-year-old. – CB

CG Blake: So before I ask you about Molly, tell us briefly about The Bone Blade Girl and the world it’s set in.

AD Bloom: The Bone Blade Girl is set five hundred years after the end of the world, in a dark age where noble families are kept in power by Stitchlife gene-witches who rewrite them to post-human perfection. Molly is a young peasant girl from a walled town in the wilds who is rewritten for fantastic speed by a renegade Stitchlife and becomes the people’s champion in the struggle for power.

CG Blake: Okay, so why did you make your protagonist a cold-blooded, little girl with a knife?

AD Bloom: I chose to make Molly a little girl because I wanted a character who would make violence harder for the reader to accept as normal behavior. As readers (and movie and TV viewers), we’re pretty used to the idea of adult heroes killing people (especially for a cause), but when a little girl like Molly kills, I think it makes the horrific nature of the act more apparent.

CG Blake: Right from the first page, Molly seems quite easily capable of killing. Did you write her to be some kind of a sociopath?

AD Bloom: Although Molly does possess a cold calm that enables her to kill without what you and I would consider normal empathy or mercy, she isn’t a sociopath in the strict sense if only because she cares so much about the well-being of the people around her. It’s actually a sense of social responsibility that drives Molly to action. That’s the same reason why a lot of people throughout history have committed heinous acts – to make the world better, or at least what they thought was better. It’s a recurring theme throughout all three books in the Stitch Series.

CG Blake: Are all three books about Molly?

AD Bloom: Molly is the main character of all three books, but the story isn’t only about her. It’s about Power. It’s about situational ethics, too, and there are lots of other characters. The Stitchlife Witches, the Populist guerrilla general, the nobles, and my favorite: the bear. After I finished Book Three I realized they’re all dark-hearted heroes – each and every one of them is capable of doing terrible things for a good cause, and none of them have unstained hands.

CG Blake: It seems like you always write your characters to be a little dark? Why?

AD Bloom: I think I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t at least partly in response to the last decade when I think a lot of us (here in America) became shockingly comfortable with the idea of doing something we know is wrong (torture, for example) to achieve an outcome we think is beneficial (saving lives with information we gained). That the ends should justify the means is in no way a new thought, but the level of comfort we have with it now is pretty appalling. Many of us (like Molly) have been seduced into believing that it is honorable to sacrifice oneself for a cause by doing things we know are wrong in order to achieve a noble end. I can see now how it crept into my characters – not just Molly, but others. I’m thinking of Father Doogan from Morituri, Bonnie Levi Mei from Bring Me the Head of the Buddha, and Harry Cozen from Cozen’s Call.

A.D. Bloom’s The Bone Blade Girl (Book One), The Fall of the Haunted City (Book Two), and The Stitchlife Rebellion (Book Three) are available on Kindle for $1.50 each.

http://www.amazon.com/Bone-Blade-Girl-Stitch-ebook/dp/B0077CZK7M

http://www.amazon.com/Fall-Haunted-City-Stitch-ebook/dp/B0077D75LU

http://www.amazon.com/The-Stitchlife-Rebellion-ebook/dp/B0077D75ZG

They can also be purchased bundled together for a 33% discount ($2.99) as Stitch: All Three Novellas in the Stitch Series.

http://www.amazon.com/STITCH-Three-Books-Stitch-ebook/dp/B0077D9D06

 

 

 

 

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What Is Your Genre?

One of the most important decisions a novice writer must make is to select a genre in which to focus her work. Here’s an example of a query letter an author should never send to an agent:

Please represent me on my first novel. It is a thriller set in early 20th Century San Francisco that combines the best elements of romance, science fiction, and action/adventure, with a Young Adult theme. You’re going to love it!

Not likely. Chances are the agent probably won’t even want to read it. If you want to successfully pitch your book, you must identify a genre. Agents cannot sell your book to a publisher unless it has a clearly-defined genre. Publishers cannot market books to readers unless there is a genre. Consumers buy books based in part on the genre. Walk into any bookstore and you will see the signs in the aisles: Fiction/Literature, Romance, Historical, Science Fiction, and so on.

Here are some of the more popular genres:

  • Young Adult (YA)
  • Romance
  • Science Fiction
  • Action/adventure
  • Crime/Mystery (includes murder/mystery,
    police procedural, detective)
  • Urban Fantasy

Other genres include:

  • Western
  • Historical
  • Erotica
  • Family Saga
  • Children
  • Inspirational (Christian)
  • “Literary”
  • Horror

A book can be focused on one genre and include elements of another, but authors should never pitch it to an agent as a combination
of two genres. How will you know what genre it is? You must answer the question, ‘What is the main focus of the story?’ Here’s an example. A story is built around the murder of a teen-age girl. It is told from the point of view of her former boyfriend, who is grief-stricken beyond belief. The action centers on the girl’s circle of friends and how they cope with her death. The genre is Young Adult. Now take the same murder and tell the story from the point of view of a burned out cop-turned-private investigator. The focus of the story is his quest to solve the crime and bring about at least some closure to the girl’s parents. The PI might be fighting his own demons as he grapples with the case. The genre is crime/mystery.

Should you choose a genre or write the book first? My advice is to write the book you want to write. Tell the story you are passionate about. Then take a look at it and see what genre it fits. If you start out with the idea you are going to select a genre you believe is popular and provides the best path to getting published, but you don’t have the least amount of interest in or passion about the genre, it will show in your work.

Should you write one book in a particular genre and a second book in a different genre? Agents and publishers will advise against this. The reason is that as an author you want to establish a brand identity. Focusing your work in a single genre is the best way to do that. However, I also believe writers should write about what they are passionate about (I’m repeating myself here). If you feel strongly about a story, but it’s not in the genre you normally write, why not give it a shot? You can always publish under a pseudonym, but that’s a topic for a whole different discussion.

In case you’re wondering, my genre is Family Saga. It’s what I like to read and to write. But I have this killer idea for a murder/mystery.

What is your genre? Why did you choose it? Or, did your genre choose you?

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