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Interview with author Laura Brewer


Author Jennelle Leanne Schmidt

Today, I want to introduce our guest author Laura Brewer!


Laura, welcome!


Can you tell us what genre(s) you primarily write? Noblebright Fantasy and SciFi, with a focus on character and story.


What type of books do your write?


I write mostly novels in a series, occasionally short stories or novellas. I seldom manage to write anything that's simple enough for shorter forms. I like rich, complex worlds with interesting cultures. The way different cultures might develop in different situations has always fascinated me.


When did you start writing?


I started writing over thirty years ago, but I was writing in a vacuum with no coaching and stumbling around in the dark. That was before internet, or even PC's. I got serious about around 2010, but finally dedicated myself to it about six years ago.


I love that you kept at it!


How many books have you written to date?


I have six complete, with several more in process.


That's awesome. How many have you published?


Six, so far. Number seven will be out by the end of the year.


Laura, can you recall what first inspired you to write?


What first struck that spark was the episode of StarTrek TOS where Spock was compelled to return to Vulcan. That whole thing felt totally wrong to me. It raised a single question in my mind back when I was about 12 or so - What would a world of telepaths REALLY be like? What would come out of that kind of interaction in their pre-space development? How would such a society normally interact? What would be the benefits, the pitfalls? It took decades to fully form, while I was busy growing up and later being a mother, but out of that grew the Songs of Talmanor, which is quite different from the source of the spark.


I love that your writer gears were turning even watching it as a fan! I think is one of my own traits that probably drives my poor wife nuts when we watch movies & shows, but I digress. Haha!

Do you consider your work to be Noblebright?


Absolutely! Even before I ever heard the term, I wanted to shine light in dark places.


Why?


Even in the Talmanor Trilogy, Faith, Hope, and Love are central to the core characters. Selarial said it best - "While hope lives, all ways are not lost, though it may appear otherwise."


My characters make mistakes, they have some serious challenges and chances to turn their backs on others, but in the end, they succeed in doing the right thing. In the Asgard series, they have extreme challenges on both a personal level and on some external challenges that touch on real issues of abuse and slavery, and with others that are more than any mortal could handle alone.


We all face such challenges, but now more than ever, people need to understand the concept that dragons Can be killed, that hope is alive and well, that they can do more than they think they can. With man, it is impossible, but with God, All things are possible. I try to keep that thread throughout, no matter how subtle.


That's really the heart of the Noblebright genre, isn't it? I love that! Is your faith prominent in your writing? If so, why?


It varies, depending on the story, but I keep it subtle. They're not set on Earth and though the Asgard series does have some ties back to it, they won't come out in a strong way until much later. The faith is shown, experienced, but it's in the mindset of the characters and how they respond to challenges.


The 'why' is simple. We all face things in our lives that we cannot, of ourselves, fix. It maybe in the hands of someone else, it may be sickness, or trouble beyond our mortal ability to affect change. The only two answers to this are worry/fear or faith. Fear will only make a bad situation worse, but faith brings peace and clarity to see what you can do - and what you must leave to God. You're so right, you're going to be in fear or faith. It's one or the other.


So what are some of the most prominent influences (literature, art, entertainment, etc.) in your writing?


The first, and probably most important, would be Andre Norton. In both her Fantasy and SciFi she infused her stories with a sense of more to be found, over that hill, or at the next planetfall... I've tried to keep that sense in my own writing, along with her way of teaming 'people' of all kinds together to accomplish something, be it aliens, men or beasts. Even when she had characters who thought they were utterly alone, as Tirtha in Ware Hawk, they learned to overcome barriers to work together and trust each other.


Tolkien had an influence on how to create a full, unique world on all levels, from species to culture and beyond.


From Tom Clancy I learned how to write large battles and complex plots with up close and personal, to political, to military all interwoven into a whole that worked together for the story.


While the others above still have an influence in the Way I write, the influence in the Asgard stories is Norse mythology and that's very loose indeed. The Bible is a stronger influence. Our Asgard is one of the training grounds for the Armies of Heaven, under command of General Archangel Gabriel. Where the original dreams are concerned, they were probably also influenced by long exposure to the SCA and many years of TTRPG's as well.


How do you incorporate those influences into your work without be derivative?


What I have tried to emulate of Andre Norton's work is hard to pin down. It's more a matter of a way of viewing the possibilities of things that Might be. There are some more direct influences. My space going Traders Guild in the Talmanor universe echoes the mindset of her Sulcar seafarers in her Witchworld books, but then her Sulcar were in turn based off of our merchant marines of times past. In hers and mine, they're fierce, adventurous warriors and staunch friends.


For Asgard, there are some obvious imports, Odin, Frigg, Thor, Freya, Valkyries and Valhalla, but they all take on different aspects with real purpose behind them. Oh, and Hel is involved too (as one of Satan's chief agents). In fact, he's after my MC's. We have never seen the Marvel version of Thor, so I can safely say I've not borrowed any ideas there, just from the myths for some very basic building blocks, but my structure is completely different. The gods of Asgard aren't omni anything, and venerate the Creator above all. Well, except for Hel, but that's to be expected. Even the mortals who follow them know well to hold the Creator above Asgard.


So, what are some of the major themes that readers will find in your work?


Bonded mates, teamwork, especially in marriage, family ties, and standing against evil wherever they find it.


What book of yours should we be reading today?


All things considered, Winds of Chaos, book one of the Chronicles of Asgard: Awakening series.


Using just five words, give us a taste of what we can expect in that book.


teamwork, adventure, monsters, magic, Conflict


And where can we find Winds of Chaos?


Today, on Amazon, both ebook and print https://amzn.to/3WNVcPL

The ebook releases wide on March 4th https://books2read.com/u/bx9G16


Laura, what is the best way for us to follow you, and your work?


Sign up for my newsletter https://laurabrewer.substack.com/

You'll get a free copy of Breaking the Chains, a Chronicles of Asgard Novella when you sign up.


Join my Facebook Reader's group https://bit.ly/3T2aleP


Thank you for joining us today, Laura! Any parting thoughts?


Aye, I'll leave you with the words of King Keric to graduating students, "May your lives be filled with joy and blessings - and may your swords always be sharp!"


Thank you for inviting me. It's been a pleasure.



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