Thursday, June 25, 2009

Guest Blogger: David Farland - Part One


David Farland is a pseudonym for Dave Wolverton and is the author of several series including The Runelords epic fantasy saga, the Mummy Chronicles, The Golden Queen, Star Wars tie-in novels, and the Benjamin Raven children’s series. Dave has been nominated for both Hugo and Nebula Awards and is a judge for the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future contest.

I first heard the name David Farland during a book signing where other authors were talking about a children's book written by a nationally published author who usually wrote epic fantasies. After that I heard a lot about David Farland, his books, his workshops and the dozens of published writers who learned from him.

I've read a lot of epic fantasy and David Farland's Runelord's series wasn't anything like what I'd read before. I decided shortly after starting the series I needed to attend at least one of his workshops, if not more. I haven't been able to yet, but I've read his daily emails called David Farland's Daily Kick in the Pants. And they are fantastic! So I'm really excited to have David Farland, also known as David Wolverton as a guest on my blog.

He was very generous in answering my questions, and I don't want anyone to miss his insights, so I'm breaking this up into a 3 part series.


me - First off, tell us about your new book.

DF - Actually, I have several things in the works. So let’s go by age:

Some fifteen years ago, I was driving down the street in Oregon with my son Forrest, who was four at the time. He was looking longingly out the window at a red helium balloon drifting above the woods outside the city of Corvallis, and he asked, “Dad, whose job is it to catch all the balloons that fly away?” Immediately I knew that I had to write a story, so I wrote a children’s picture book called The Balloon Catcher, which tells the story of a mystical man who hunts down wild balloons and then brings them to a decrepit, colorless city to give to children. When I finished it, I realized that I would rather have it be an animated film, so I pushed it to the back of my mind, thinking, “Someday I’m going to run across an animation studio that would be just crazy enough to make this film.” So last winter I met a young man who was starting an animation studio, and he’s making a 3D film based on the story. These guys are going crazy. For example, they made over 2500 animated people for this short film, and they’re doing some incredible design work. In any case, The Balloon Catcher should be finished in August, and I believe that we will be able to get the book/DVD combo released this fall.

Next on the list is my middle-grade book called Freaky Fly Day, the third in my Ravenspell series, which deals with a boy and his magical mouse. This is a story about an enormous fly named Belle Z. Bub who is born by spontaneous generation in an L.A. dump. By creating a wicked multi-level marketing campaign, she enlists the aid of billions of flies in taking over the world. But of course, she cannot stand unopposed. In this story, my magical mouse Amber teams up with her owner Ben (who has also been turned into a mouse), to take on Belle. Along the way, they team up with California Governor Harold Shortzenbegger, the finest specimen of humanity alive, in a battle royal for control of the Earth. This one comes out September first.

Third is my historical novel In the Company of Angels. In 1856, the leader of the Mormon church, Brigham Young, set in motion a program to bring the poorest Mormon immigrants in Europe and Asia to Utah in the American West. In order to save money, the immigrants were to cross the prairie in handcarts, which are basically large wheelbarrows. My story here follows three people who crossed the prairie in the fall of 1856—Eliza Gadd, a forty-year-old mother of eight who was the only non-Mormon to take the trek; Bodil Mortensen, a nine-year-old girl from Denmark who was sent by her parents to escape the extreme persecution that was going on at home; and Captain James Willie, a Mormon missionary who was made the head of the group and who gave away all of his fortune to pay for ship’s passage for these people. Unfortunately, the ill-fated handcart company got a late start and faced tremendous setbacks which included storms, buffalo stampedes, rampaging Cheyenne Indians, starvation, and the early onset of what became the coldest winter of the 1800s. What fascinated me about this story isn’t what went wrong, but how the journey changed these people’s lives.

My fourth book out this fall is my big fantasy novel called Berserker Lord, book eight in the Runelords series. For those who are following the series, when Fallion Orden bound two worlds together in Worldbinder, we follow what happens to him for the next two novels. But his stepfather, Sir Borenson, is on the far side of the world at the time. When the worlds are bound, Sir Borenson binds with his “shadow self,” himself as found in the world of the wyrmlings. There, he bore the title of “Lord Berserker,” or greatest of all berserkers, and as such was considered the greatest of his people’s warriors. As the body guard to the Earth King, Borenson was also one of the most deadly warriors on his world. Now, the two men are bound into one body, and Borenson must struggle to retain his sanity as he leads an expedition to save the world from the wyrmlings and their dark masters.

Stay tuned for Part 2, which talks about some of David Farland's ins and outs of writing.

BERSERKER LORD book eight of The Runelords to be released October 13, 2009.

Now that I have your attention, yes, you can get free stuff!. In particular, a copy of one of Dave Farland's books. And all you have to do is comment on all three installments of this interview. Easy! One week after the third installment I will randomly pick a name from a hat for the the free book.

For more information on Dave’s books or writing workshops, check out his website at

Interview with David Wolverton (aka David Farland) Diabolical Plots: David Steffen's quest for publication and world domination


Lori-ann said...

He sounds so interesting!!! I need to really sit down and read this interview instead of just skimming it. I can't wait for more though.

Miles - 2.98 today on elliptical. Didn't do anything since Monday. Bad, bad me.

L.T. Elliot said...

Great interview, Deborah. I love the idea of The Balloon Catcher and I'm a huge fan of the Runelord series! How cool is this?

Graham Chops said...

Wow, I really need to get into more of his stuff. I've read the first Ravenspell book and the first Runelords. That sounds like some solidly good fantasy.

Hannah said...

You added the free stuff part later, didn't you? Or I was REALLY sleepy.... ^^;

Now I have a whole set of books to read! TO THE LIBRARY!! (as soon as physically possible, meaning a week from now)

Jaime Theler said...

I love the Daily Pants newsletter. (Count me as commenting on Part one.)

lachish said...

I am going to add his books to my Goodreads list. I am very intrigued.