Here are the authors that have left this earth in 2020. May they rest in peace and a great thanks to them for sharing their gift to the world. Now we can always respect each and everyone of them by reading their great work. These authors have made their fans escape into their world and will probably help countless of others in the future to appreciate their unique writing gift. Hail and farewell to these gifted authors, hail and farewell.
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Matt is a lover of all things virtual, sci-fi, superhero and theological...
Novelist, Blog Editor, Communications Professional, and a film and game reviewer for a group of newspapers.
Read his film reviews and more at: www.darkmatt.blogspot.com
Discover more about the Darkmatters universe: artwork, merchandise, links to prequel short story, media and future plans at: www.Completedarknessnovel.com
Here are the authors that have left this earth in 2019. May they rest in peace and a great thanks to them for sharing their gift to the world. Now we can always respect these authors by reading their great work. They made a lot of fans escape into their world and will probably help countless more in the future to appreciate their unique writing gift. Hail and farewell to these gifted authors, hail and farewell.
Mr. Lee Bacon started writing children's book when he stayed in Germany for two years. He has written Joshua Dread series in which it got nominated for 2015 Nutmeg Award. It was also selected for the Spirit of Texas Reading Program. Joshua Dread was translated numerous language. He also wrote a middle-grade series titled Legentopia. Now, his latest book titled THE LAST HUMAN is here. Here is the goodread's synopsis for The Last Human:
In a future when humans are believed to be extinct, what will one curious robot do when it finds a girl who needs its help?
In the future, robots have eliminated humans, and 12-year-old robot XR_935 is just fine with that. Without humans around, there is no war, no pollution, no crime. Every member of society has a purpose. Everything runs smoothly and efficiently. Until the day XR discovers something impossible: a human girl named Emma. Now, Emma must embark on a dangerous voyage with XR and two other robots in search of a mysterious point on a map. But how will they survive in a place where rules are never broken and humans aren’t supposed to exist? And what will they find at the end of their journey?
So, take this time to get to know Lee Bacon and his compelling story that is now being made into a film by Phil Lord and Chris Miller(Artemis, The Lego Batman Movie).
1. What is the genesis of The Last Human?
I was walking home from the grocery store, listening to Ezra Klein’s podcast. He was interviewing Yuval Harari, the author of Sapiens, which is a book I really love. During the interview, Harari was asked whether he thinks human beings will be the dominant life form on Earth in 300 years. His answer came instantly: "Absolutely not!" According to his prediction, humans will either destroy the world or we'll be surpassed by our own creation: technology.
When I heard this, I nearly dropped the bag of groceries I was carrying. I was startled by what he said. And inspired. My imagination immediately began conjuring a future world. A world in which humans have gone extinct. A world ruled by robots.
I decided, right there on the sidewalk: I HAD to write this story. That same day, I began writing The Last Human.
2. What research did you do when writing The Last Human?
One of the challenges of researching robotics and AI is the rapid advancement of technology. Even books that were published in the past few years feel outdated. But I still managed to find a few books that were really helpful in researching The Last Human. One was Yuval Harari’s follow-up to Sapiens, Homo Deus, which actually offered the epigraph for The Last Human: “Organisms are algorithms.” A statement that’s both simple and deep. Whenever I worried about losing my way on The Last Human, I’d go back to this quote. Organisms are algorithms. Both simple and deep, it seemed to cut straight to the heart of what I was trying to do with the novel. To tell a story about finding a connection between two very different worlds.
My research also involved listening to a lot of tech podcasts, talking to friends in the tech industry and watching videos of robots, especially the wonderful YouTube channel from Boston Dynamics.
3. What was your writing schedule when you wrote The Last Human?
I’m a morning person. I’m at my best when I’m on a routine of waking up super-early (sometimes as early as 3am), making myself a green tea, and sitting down at my desk to write. I love feeling like I’m the only person awake in the world. Like time doesn’t exist. I’ll usually write for four or five hours, sipping green tea and tapping away on my keyboard. I generally finish up by 9 or 10am. By the time everyone else is just starting their day, I’m pretty much finished!
Sometimes, I also hit a second wind in the afternoon—around 4:30pm. If the weather’s nice, I’ll go out on the back deck with my laptop and try to write a little more.
4. How long did it take you to write the first draft of The Last Human?
About six months.
5. Did you know how The Last Human would end or did it come to you while writing the story?
On that first day, when the idea struck me while listening to a podcast, I had no idea how The Last Human would end. I only knew the basic premise. A book narrated by a robot, who unexpectedly discovers a human—even though humans are supposed to be extinct. It was only later—as I was writing the book—that I gradually figured out the ending.
6. What was the hardest chapter to write and why?
The Last Human has over a hundred chapters, most of which are only 2 or 3 pages, so I don’t really think about which individual chapter gave me the most trouble. I can only think about it in more general terms. The middle. That was the hardest part. Which is the case with every book I write. The first fifty pages usually (hopefully!) hum along on the momentum of a new idea, building the world, exploring the characters. And if I manage to make it to the final fifty pages of a novel (which isn’t always the case—some books get abandoned halfway through), I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Definitely a source of motivation. But the middle . . . that’s where things get tricky. You’ve got to do all the hard story stuff, moving things forward, maintaining the velocity of the story while also hitting all the important landmarks on the plot. If I lose steam on a book, it’s usually somewhere in the middle. Luckily, with The Last Human, I managed to make it to the end!
7. How do you continue a flow of creativity day by day?
Writing a book is a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t think about the entire novel. Just the passage you’re working on that day. Little by little. One foot in front of the other. If I’m in a good routine, waking up early and writing for 4-5 hours a day, I’ll make steady progress. Not all of what I write will be pure gold, but that’s what revisions are for!
8. Silly-Game question: from The Last Human novel could you please leaf through the pages and point at a random place. What is the full sentence? And what is the page number of this random sentence?
I don’t have the final versions of The Last Human yet. Only the advance reader copy. So the page number probably won’t match the final edition. But here goes!
“Most humans could withstand several minutes/hours in direct sunlight before their skin burned.” Page 95 of the advance reader copy.
9. Which fictional character (besides yours) would you like to sit down and chat with?
Nick Carraway from The Great Gatsby. He seems like the kind of person you’d want to meet at a party. An eloquent speaker with a good story to tell. But also an excellent listener. And I bet he makes a good cocktail.
10. Congrats on the news that Mr. Phil Lord and Chris Miller are adapting your novel, what scene are you looking forward to seeing on the big screen?
Lord & Miller are my favorite comedy filmmakers. It’s such a thrill to be working with them. I can’t wait to see the ideas they bring to a film adaptation. All the ways that their zany, brilliant vision will shape the story. I’m really curious to see how they’ll depict the scene of the two main characters meeting for the first time, when XR_935 encounters Emma.
11. Also, congrats on having Mr. Henry Gayden, writer of DC super movie SHAZAM!, writing the script, have you ever consider writing screenplays someday or in the near future?
Absolutely! I’ve actually already dipped my toe into these waters. I’m working on an audio original story with Audible called Interview With The Robot. It’ll have voice actors portraying dialogue from different characters. I wrote the entire story as a script. It was great to have the chance to work in a format that’s both familiar (storytelling) and new (screenwriting). While I was writing the first draft, I thought of it like writing a full season of a TV show. Each chapter was another episode. And like TV, I wanted these individual chapters/episodes to feel like their own distinct stories, with a beginning, middle and end that would keep the listener engaged. But of course, each part also needed to serve the larger story.
I really enjoyed working on Interview With The Robot and hope I’ll have the chance to write other scripts in the future!
12. What is your favorite book as an adult? What is your favorite book as a kid?
My favorite book as an adult is The Great Gatsby. I re-read it every couple of years and always find something new to appreciate. Maybe that’s why I chose Nick Carraway as the fictional character I’d like to meet.
My favorite book as a kid was James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl. It was funny and dark and weird. When I discovered it back in elementary school, it opened my eyes to what books could be. They could be anything!
13. You lived in Munich, Germany in the past, what meal would you consider everyone to try if he or she visits there?
Well, you’ve got to get some authentic German food! I’d recommend a sauerbraten with knödel (potato dumplings) and red cabbage. My wife is German, so I go back once or twice a year and always look forward to a big German meal while I’m there.
14. Could you give an interesting fun fact about your Joshua Dread book tour?
After the first Joshua Dread book came out, I did lots of school visits. Including at my old school, Oakwood Intermediate School in College Station, Texas. It was a surreal experience to walk back through that same front door, to walk down those same hallways—twenty years later. Everything was the same, and different. Including me.
15. What did you wish you knew when you started your writing career as you were hoping for publication?
If I could go back and give myself one piece of writing advice, it would be “Keep it simple!” This can be a challenge in those early days. Many ambitious young writers have a tendency to overwrite. I certainly did. I was eager to prove myself, to show off all the spectacular things I could do with words. Which meant long, flowing sentences, vivid metaphors, poetic turns of phrase. At the time, I thought readers would be blown away by my shimmering language. Now I realize how overwrought those early stories were. These days, I understand that a writer can do a lot with less.
16. What was the last story (fiction or non-fiction) you read?
I just finished The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. It was my second time, and I think I enjoyed the book even more this time around! I hope she publishes another novel sometime soon. Although—I’m not holding my breath. A new Donna Tartt novel comes along every decade or so. But it’s always worth the wait!
17. Last question, if you discovered that you’re the last human on earth what is the first thing you would do?
Mr. Lee Bacon's The Last Human should be on your to-read pile. You should definitely check it out. It will also make a wonderful gift for any child that loves to read science fiction books.It's available on amazon. Thanks once again for visiting my blog and I hope each and everyone of you have a superb Saturday. Take care and happy reading.
Here is a bone-chilling synopsis (from amazon) of Paul Burston's novel The Closer I Get:
Tom is a successful author, but he's struggling to finish his novel. His main distraction is an online admirer, Evie, who simply won't leave him alone. Evie is smart, well-read, and unstable; social-media friendships are not only her escape, but everything she has. When she's hit with a restraining order, her world is turned upside down, and Tom is free to live his life again, to concentrate on writing. But things aren't really adding up. For Tom is distracted but also addicted to his online relationships, and when they take a darker, more menacing turn, he feels powerless to change things. Maybe he needs Evie more than he's letting on.
A compulsive thriller, The Closer I Get is also a searing commentary on the fragility and insincerity of online relationships, and the danger that can lurk just one "like" away.
1.What is the genesis of The Closer I Get?
Some years I had a stalker. The harassment started online, where the person hid behind various screen names and avatars, and later spilled over into real life. It was deeply unsettling. Eventually they were identified, arrested and convicted. But it took me a long time to get over the impact of the crime.
2.What research did you do when writing The Closer I Get?
Not much. I’d lived a lot of it. I did speak to lawyers about court process and to other victims of stalking about how it impacted on them. Most of the stories were very similar to mine. 40% of people convicted of harassment or stalking breach their retraining order. My stalker didn’t. The book imagines what might have happened if they had.
3.Did you have writer’s block on The Closer I Get? If so, how did you get over it?
No, the book came quite easily - the Evie chapters in particular. Tom took a bit longer. I didn’t want him to become my alter ego in the book. He and I have very little in common. I actually found it easier to empathise with Evie than with Tom, at least at the beginning.
4.What was the most surprising thing you learned after writing The Closer I Get?
I learned to forgive the person who caused me so much distress and anger. That surprised me and also freed me, so it was a win-win.
5.Did anyone or anything inspired The Closer I Get?
See previous answers! There’s also a bit of Stephen King’s Misery in there, a bit of Morrissey, a bit of Fatal Attraction and a bit of Blondie. I’m a pop culture junkie. This often filters into what I write.
6.Where is your favorite place to write?
Hastings, where I have a small flat I go to when I need a break from London. I write best there.
7.What is your writing process in general?
I start early, before breakfast, work for a few hours, take a break and maybe go for a walk or run or to the gym. Then I go back to it for a few hours later. On a good day. On a bad day I’ll leave it until the next morning.
8.How do you balance between being a journalist and being a best-selling author?
It’s all a question of planning. And I’m good with deadlines - I’m used to them, having been a journalist for 30 years. Sometimes it’s hard to juggle the two, but not often.
9. What’s the best advice you have ever received about writing?
To aim to write every day, however little. I don’t always manage it, but if I write most days I find it easier to keep going. If I leave it too long, it takes a while to get back into it. It’s like an actor forgetting their lines and slipping out of character. Only the author is playing all the characters.
10.What was your favorite book when you were a kid? Do you have a favorite book now?
I had several - Winnie The Pooh, The Magic Faraway Tree, Carrie. My favourite books change all the time, depending on my mood and what I’m looking for in a book. Right now I’d say Tales of the City, The Talented Mr Ripley and Lisa Jewell’s latest, The Family Upstairs.
11.Who is your favorite superhero?
Batman. Ever since I was small.
12.What show would you like to make a cameo?
Better Things. It’s my current favourite TV show.
13. Have you ever considered writing a screenplay?
I’ve worked on a few but never really dedicated myself to it. My other writing takes priority.
14.What is your favorite condiment?
15.Silly-Game question: From The Closer I Get could you please leaf through the pages and point at a random place. What is the full sentence? And what is the page number of this random sentence?
Rose thou art sick! Evie, thou art sicker! Page 153
I truly appreciate Mr. Burston for taking his time to do this interview. The Closer I Get is now available at amazon, just click to link to get your copy today. You should definitely put it on your to-read pile as well. Thank you for stopping by here to read another interview. Thank you for your time and have a fantastic day.
“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”
Ms. Toni Morrison has sadly passed away on August 5, 2019. She was eighty-eight years old. She died from complications of pneumonia in New York. Her books and other works will influence generations of writers. Her talent and gift will forever be treasured by her fans.
Ms. Morrison's inspirational quote (written above this very post) should be appreciated by everyone especially would-be writers. Every writer should not take his or her gift for granted.You should share that gift with the world, whether your work reaches only one person or to millions of people. Every and any stories that's yearning to come out from you should be written and share. Ms. Toni Morrison has shared her gift with the world and I hope you get read her works to appreciate yet another fantastic author. She will be missed.
And with that, please watch the YouTube clips on how Ms. Toni Morrison started to write below. I hope it will encourage you to write right this very minute. Tell someone you know that might be enlightened by these clips to watch them. Take care and RIP Ms. Toni Morrison.
The blurb of Between The Lie from the author's website:
The truth is hiding between the lies...
What would you do if you woke up and didn't know who you were?
Chloe Daniels regains consciousness in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
She doesn't recognize the strangers who call themselves family. She can't even remember her own name.
What if your past remained a mystery?
As she slowly recovers, her parents and sister begin to share details of her life.
The successful career. The seaside home. The near-fatal car crash.
But Chloe senses they're keeping dark secrets - and her determination to uncover the truth will have devastating consequences.
What if the people you should be able trust are lying to you?
I'm pleased to have Ms. Michelle Adams here again for another blog interview. Her latest novel, Between The Lies, is a gripping thriller that will keep guessing till the very end. But before you get your hands on this brilliant psychological thriller, get to know the author's take of her work.
1. Could you give a brief summary of Between The Lies?
Between The Lies is the exploration of one woman's history when she wakes up to find herself in a coma with not only no recollection of the crash, but also her family. The people around her say they are there to help, but as she returns home with them it becomes increasingly clear that somebody is hiding something. The question then, is who.
2. List three adjectives to describe Between The Lies?
Moody, cold, and claustrophibic
3. Are experiences in Between The Lies based on someone you know or events in your own life?
A few years ago I ended up in ITU after a bad reaction to some prescribed medication. For a short while I couldn't remember my own nameor where I lived. Afterwards it took a while for all the pieces to fit back into place. That is where this story was born.
4. Was there anything you find particularly challenging in writing Between The Lies?
Well it was my first book written under contract, and that was a bit of a challenge for me, sticking to deadlines, and writing with an editor in mind.
5. That’s a striking-nice book cover, who designed it? Was it collaboration afford?
All artwork is courtesy of my publisher. I think they did a great job, and I really hope people like it.
6. What was the hardest part of writing Between The Lies?
The editorial stage, because my new baby came home at the same time. It wasn't easy editing on her nap schedule and after she slept, but we got there. I like to think of it as a joint effort.
7. Which part of the research on Between The Lies was the most personally interesting to you?
In the outset I read a lot about the Milgram experiments. It was really interesting to see how people would react, what they might believe, and how far they would be prepared to go to hurt another person if they believed that they were absolved of responsibility.
8. What is your writing habit? Do you write in the daytime or night?
I write between 8 am and 2:30 PM while my daughter is at nursery.
9. What are your top five favorite books and why?
I recently read A LITTLE LIFE and it has taken my top spot. I think it was quite simply the most beautiful exploration of what it means to live alongside others, to love without bounds, and explore the deepest places in your own heart. I absolutely loved it, and still think of those characters. To me it seemed that they were so real. I also love CAPTAIN CORRELI'S MANDOLIN, THE HANDMAID'S TALE, A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE series, and GONE GIRL because it was inspirational to me when writing my earliest thrillers.
10. Silly-Game question: From Between The Lies novel (with your eyes close) could you please leaf through the pages and point at a random place. What is the full sentence? And what is the page number of this random sentence?
Page 133 - I was awake enough to see Joshua lying lifeless on the forest floor.
11. What is the one book you would give to anyone and everyone as a gift(besides yours, of course)?
A LITTLE LIFE. I'm not sure everybody would love it, and it has a difficult subject matter. But I think everybody should have the chance to read it.
12. What’s your favorite song?
MY GIRL by The Temptations. We spent time in ITU with my daughter and I used to sing it to her and she would always relax when I did. I still sing it to her now, most nights, and she always doses when I do.
13. If you could pick a day to relive over and over again, what day would it be and why?
That's a really hard question. I have many wonderful days in my past. But I'm a firm believer in not looking back to much. I would never choose to go back. I've never been happier than I am now, so why would I want to go back?
14. Last question, If (or when) Between The Lies does become a movie, who would be your dream casts?
I'd love Bradley Cooper to star and direct. I think he is superbly talented.
I'll definitely watch Between The Lies if(or when) it ever gets a film adaptation. Meanwhile, you guys should give this novel a try. It's positively should be on your wishlist. Thanks again to Ms. Michelle Adams for stopping by here again. If you want to check out her first interview on novel pro, just click "here." Take care and I hope you are having a great day. Happy reading:)
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