Jason Beymer has been so gracious as to stop by the blog and answer some questions about his novels and writing style. So, without further ado:
You’ve written two very humorous, off kilter novels, Rogue’s Curse and Nether. What led you to write these novels? What were your inspirations for the novels, if any?
Both of these novels spawned from scene ideas. I knew I wanted to write comedies (and comedies that would make beverages explode out a reader’s nostrils). But the books took on a life of their own once I put pen to paper. In my stories, the characters do the writing for me. They dictate the twists and turns with their actions.
With Rogue’s Curse, I knew I wanted to pay tribute to my favorite show of all time, To Catch a Predator, and I wanted to show a screwed up monarchy with a king who ruled entirely with the tip of his penis. I wanted to make my own race of monsters–something akin to ogres or orcs, but unique. This spawned the race of clovorts, and the characters of Oompus and Barbus. The idea of setting the story in our world 2000 years after the Rapture came in later drafts. What would our Bible look like 2000 years from now? What books would survive? How would the stories change? Most importantly, could I add a new chapter to the Bible and add my own biblical prophet? The answer turned out to be Yes. Yes I could.
With Nether, I paid tribute to my dachshund. Beyond that, I wanted to up the ante from Rogue’s Curse. I incorporated different themes: shapeshifters, talking dogs, zombies, teenage demons…even a jaunt through the afterlife. I took risks with this book, and I hope they paid off.
What character do you identify with the most in Rogue’s Curse and Nether? Why?
Sadly, I most relate to Burklin from Nether. We’re equally paranoid. Like him, I have an opinionated dachshund that won’t shut up. It wasn’t difficult to climb into Burklin’s neurotic head and know how he would react to every situation.
In Rogue’s Curse I identify with Doban on a carnal level–sort of that “dark side” we refuse to show others. Though, I would never lock anyone inside a tomb and leave them to die (unless they deserved it).
Are any of your characters or stories based on aspects of your own life?
Uh…um….hmm. Definitely not? Well, so I own the same dog from Nether, and I’m paranoid like most of my characters. Do I own a harem with 365 women? Can I shapeshift? Does my dog talk? Have I ever bathed a zombie? Okay, yes to all of these; I’ve led an unusual life.
What do you hope readers take away from your novels?
First I want readers to laugh. For Rogue’s Curse, I want them to come away with a vision of the world I’ve created, and with visuals they can’t get out of their head (like Lady Mumford’s pockmarked body naked. Yum!). For Nether I want them to think about society, and about parenthood in general. Themes of parenthood are prevalent throughout Nether. This was purposeful, as I’m a stay-at-home dad, and the father of an adopted girl from China. If you tear away the layers of comedy and absurdness, what you have is a story about different types of parents: good and bad. But mostly bad.
What is the writing process like for you? Do you have a special place that you like to write, or any special rituals that you go through before/during the writing process?
I wake up at 5:00 am every morning, shower, dress (that’s the important part), then drive to Starbucks by 5:30 am when it opens. I sit in the comfy red chair, put on my headphones and write until about 7:30 am. You’d be surprised how much writing fodder walks through those doors. Do you need help with a character? How about a selfish, belligerent mommy with three disrespectful sugared-up children? Just look up from your laptop. Then I go home and wake my kid, dress her (that’s the important part), feed her, and take her to school. I’m at my most creative in the morning. By noon, my creativity is shot.
Do you have a playlist in mind for your novels? If so, what music would you recommend a reader listen to while reading?
I listen to movie soundtracks and instrumentals when I write. I can’t listen to anything with words or I get too distracted. Below are my top three for both books (and yeah, throw these on you Kindle and listen to them while you’re reading–you won’t be disappointed):
1) Rogue’s Curse
a) Indiana Jones stuff — Raiders of the Lost Ark: Desert Chase, and Last Crusade: Belly of the Steel Beast
b) Explosions in the Sky’s Your Hand in Mine
c) Lost – Oceanic 815 and Parting Words
a) The Dark Knight soundtrack (all)
b) Battlestar Galactica soundtrack (Bear McCreary is the man).
c) Furious Angels album (Rob Dougan)
How did you decide to become a writer? Did you always want to write, or did it just happen?
I’ve been writing since I was a toddler. At three years old I was a felony plagiarist, stealing from Beatrix Potter and Mother Goose. I rewrote their stories a thousand times. I finished my first “real” book in high school. It was terrible, but I was a high school punk who thought research, listening to anyone over the age of 20, and editing were for suckers. The book was about two rogue CIA agents trying to kill each other in Los Angeles. Why wouldn’t Hollywood want to make a movie out of that? Now I hope it never sees the light of day.
Do you have a favorite author or novel that you recommend your fans read? What are you reading right now?
Top of my head: Anything by Ray Bradbury, especially Fahrenheit 451. The prose is beautiful, and the message rocks. For other chilling messages, Huxley’s Brave New World is incredible. I love Connie Willis (especially Passages), everything by Philip K. Dick, 1970′s Stephen King novels, Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land, Stephen Crane’s Maggie and his short stories about New York (and The Monster–awesome), Shute’s On the Beach (incredible apocalyptic stuff), Gaiman’s Sandman, Good Omens, American Gods. I could go on and on here. Right now I’m reading Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale.
Are there any other novels in the works at this time? What can readers expect from the next novel?
The print version of Rogue’s Curse will be available in the next week or two. I’m excited about this, since the novel has been ebook only until now. It should be up on Amazon shortly.
Also, I’m working on the sequel to Rogue’s Curse. It’s nearly ready for beta-reading. It begins six months after the events of the first book. You’ll see what happens to a rogue after six months of drinking, eating and complacency. Hint: it ain’t pretty. Beyond that I’m helping to promote other authors, and trying to inspire people to write. If any of your readers would like to guest post or be interviewed on my blog, I’d love to host them.
Here’s a little more about Rogue’s Curse:
Rogue’s Curse is a dark comedy set 2000 years after the Rapture. A rogue named Doban discovers the talisman responsible for the Rapture and it embeds itself to his skin. Now the entire kingdom is after him. Doban must turn to the only woman who ever loved him—a woman he once left to die in a tomb—for help. Rogue’s Curse has tons of sex, monsters, palace politics, romance, humor and adventure.
But mainly the focus is on the relationship between Mona and Doban. What has happened in the two years since he left her to die in the tomb? How did she survive and escape? And most importantly, can they set aside their differences long enough to stop a second Rapture? At its heart, Rogue’s Curse is about second chances, and whether or not we repeat past mistakes when presented the opportunity.
2000 years after the Rapture, the world still sucks.
Here’s a little more about Nether.
One suburban night. One stubborn corpse. One golden opportunity.
Burklin had it all: a spacious two-story house, a shapeshifting wife, a wide open future. That is, until his father ripped out his soul and trapped it inside an opinionated dachshund. Now he’s lost everything, leaving him a slave on mop-up duty for a homicidal teenage demon. His father is sleeping with his ex, the possessed dachshund won’t stop talking, and the cleanup jobs keep getting messier. Burklin would give anything to have his life back–even if it means turning against his manipulative father and destroying their chance of winning the Nether’s Demon Lord Sweepstakes.
Opportunity knocks with a dead woman’s hand. When the demon’s latest victim won’t stay dead, the rules of life and death change. Freedom lies within Burklin’s reach, but to get it he’ll have to defy his father, the ex-wife he still loves, and the Nether itself.
Just how far is he willing to go?
Bio: A permanent fixture at his local coffeehouse, Jason Beymer hunches over his laptop in a caffeine-induced frenzy, jowls slick with muse. He injects comedy into the urban and traditional fantasy genres like a squeeze of lemon into ice water: tart, yet refreshing. When not pounding on his keyboard, Jason worships at the feet of Ray Bradbury, and engages in an unhealthy obsession with Grace Park and Tricia Helfer.
Nether and Rogue’s Curse are both ebooks, and available through Lyrical Press.
Rogue’s Curse: http://www.beerandtv.com/rogues-curse
Thank you Jason!!! I am excited to have you on the blog, and I’ve highly enjoyed your novels as well!
To read my review of Rogue’s Curse, click HERE.
To read my review of Nether, click HERE.