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A Smashwords Interview with Antaeus

What do your fans mean to you?

My fans mean everything to me; without them who would read my books? I feel that I have an obligation to do everything that I can to meet their expectation of a professionally written, and interesting story. A story that will not only justify the time they took to read it but a story that will make them want to come back for more.


What are you working on next?

I have two projects right now. I am completing the third and last novel in the "Alternate Earth" series. The other project is the sequel to "Rune (Laconia Lost),". "Rune (Castopia Prime)," is about halfway written. I am shooting for completion and publication late in 2015.


Who are your favorite authors?

Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Poul Anderson, Ben Bova, Ray Bradbury, Leigh Brackett, Ray Bradbury, Marion Zimmer Bradley, L. Sprague de Camp, Stephen R. Donaldson, Clive Cussler, Robert Ludlum.


Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?

Yes, I do. The first novel I ever wrote is called "The Forgotten Ones." I made every mistake possible when I wrote it. I keep a copy to remind myself how far I have come, and how far I still have to go.


What is your writing process?

I try to write for at least six hours a day. First comes the idea, next comes the outline, which is followed by a storyline, and then a very rough draft. Then I start to write the story in earnest. Once the story is complete, and it never really is, I go back and revise, revise, revise. Then it goes to the proofreaders, and I revise, revise, and revise again.


Do you remember the first story you ever read and the impact it had on you?

I remember the first book I ever read. When I was ten years old, I worked loading milk trucks before school at 4 AM. One morning, while loading one of the trucks I found a book; it was Edith Hamilton's "Mythology." I didn't get to open it until I finished my after-school job, but once I started reading it, I was hooked. That book opened up a whole new world for me. I was no longer stuck in the inner city and could go wherever I wanted to in the world, just by opening a book. That one book literally changed my life.


How do you approach cover design?

My wife Judy was an art major in college. We will usually come up with a concept together, then hand it off to a professional book cover designer. Judy works with the designer, and I get to approve the final cover.


What are your five favorite books, and why?

I will read just about anything except romance novels and pornography. Strangely enough, although I write science fiction, my favorite books are not science fiction at all. I mostly like the classics because that's what I grew up on.


What do you read for pleasure?

Right now I am reading the Jack Reacher Series by Lee Child. Next week it will be another book by someone else, and a week later someone else again.


What is your e-reading device of choice?

I prefer to use either a Kindle or a Tablet PC.


Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?

I grew up in Jersey City, New Jersey. Growing up there influenced my writing in a negative way. My friends and peers considered all writers homosexuals, so if you wanted to write, or you read a lot of books, you must be gay. Peer pressure can sometimes be a terrible thing.


When did you first start writing?

I started writing, secretly of course, when I was about twelve or thirteen. I stopped at seventeen to join the service and didn't start again until about 2009.


What's the story behind your latest book?

I have been waiting to write Rune for a long time. In fact, I started it twenty years ago but never had the chance to finish it (life again).

When I decided to start writing full time, I pulled out a box containing all of my old storylines, ideas, and poetry out of the attic.

I opened the box, there was the synopsis, with a different name, of course, sitting right on top. The original story I started all those years ago had to be scrapped, but the bones were good and laid a foundation for Rune.


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