Name: Stefon Mears
What attracts you to the genre in which you write?
I write in a number of genres, but since the Heroic Tales Bundle has one of my fantasy novellas, I’ll stick to fantasy for now.
I cut my teeth on the fantasy genre. As a small child, my picture books were children’s versions of Greek and Norse myths. After those came Uncle Wiggly and Kipling’s Just So Stories. After that, straight to Tolkien and Moorcock, Howard and Leiber. Anywhere I could find dragons or magic or both, I was happy.
That led naturally into playing Dungeons and Dragons, and suddenly I wasn’t just reading fantasy stories, I was playing interactive fantasy stories. From there to writing down my own was not a big step.
What piece of writing advice do you wish you’d known when you started your writing adventures?
Well, I’d love to go back to my teenage self and shove a copy of Heinlein’s Rules into my hand, but failing that, I’ll go with, “It doesn’t have to be perfect. It just has to be finished.”
If you could have dinner with any famous person or character who would you choose?
The answers to questions like these will change any time you ask me, but for right now…
Famous person: I’d love to have dinner with Roger Zelazny. Partially because I’d love to pick his brain about writing, but more than that I’d love to hear his stories.
Character: Bilbo Baggins. He was the first fantasy character I remember really identifying with as a child, and I think it would make for marvellous conversation. Plus, the food would be amazing!
Who has been the greatest influence on your own work?
That’s a tough call. There are so many. I’d like to say Zelazny, because in many ways I think his work made me want to write. But it may be more honest to say Tolkien, because the wonder I found in his stories probably underlies everything I do.
Do you think the e-book revolution will do away with print?
No. I think it’s just given readers more options, which is always a good thing.
Which 3 books would you take to a desert island and why?
Three books. Whuf. Another one of those that will change every time it’s asked, but for right now…
The Complete Book of Amber by Roger Zelazny, which might be cheating because it’s ten novels in one, but it is a book. So, number of stories is a factor in this one, but also because these stories always fire off my imagination in a different direction.
The Ultimate Survival Manual (from Outdoor Life) for obvious reasons. And it’s not cheating, because I own a copy.
The Complete Enchanter by DeCamp and Pratt. Always gets me thinking along philosophical lines, which would probably be a good thing, since I’ll have a lot of time to myself.
Author bio and book synopsis
Stefon Mears earned his M.F.A. in Creative Writing from N.I.L.A., and his B.A. in Religious Studies (double emphasis in Ritual and Mythology) from U.C. Berkeley. Stefon’s short pieces have sold to magazines such as Fireside and Strange Horizons and anthologies edited by Kevin J. Anderson, Rebecca Moesta, Kerrie L. Hughes, and John Helfers. He has published eighteen books to date, including the Rise of Magic series.
Tell us about your book(s) – title, genre etc (short)
My book in this bundle is With a Broken Sword.
One knight stands between invaders and conquest.
His secret mission ended in an ambush. Now Ser Colin awakens on a battlefield under the bodies of his friends, the last knight still alive. And the invaders have seized the town of Three Bridges, with river access to the whole kingdom.
How can one lone knight lead a ragtag group of townsfolk to victory over warriors and wizards?
With a Broken Sword, a rollicking fantasy adventure full of magic and excitement. From Stefon Mears, author of Half a Wizard. Fans of Game of Thrones won’t want to miss this one!