Gloria Oliver lives in Texas. She is the author of the four fantasy and YA fantasy novels – “In the Service of Samurai”, “Vassal of El”,
“Willing Sacrifice”, and her latest “Cross-eyed Dragon Troubles”. She also has a handful of short stories in several anthologies. For sample
chapters and other info please visit www.gloriaoliver.com. She is a member in good standing with both EPIC and Broad Universe.
La’tiera knows that to save the world, she must die. But when she’s
kidnapped, she’s told that to save the world, she must live. She won’t
be fooled so easily.
In the Service of Samurai
Adventure set in a fictional Japan, where a
boy becomes the key to completing the mission a samurai has come back from dead to finalize.
Vassal of El
Having avoided his haunting past for years, one act of kindness throws Torren onto a path which will force him to face it once again.
DE: The premise of WILLING SACRIFICE is fascinating. You have a protagonist who is determined to free herself from her kidnappers so that she can DIE. Was there something in particular you can share with us that got that “what if?” going for you?
GO: I started thinking one day about people who gave up their lives for a cause and the kind of stubbornness and strength of haracter it would take to have such commitment. Then it occurred to me to play with that concept and twist it as “truth” is not always as we know it. The book deals with two very stubborn individuals, both who think they are on the right path. It sounded like too much fun to have those worlds collide and see what came out of it.
DE: In the blurb of VASSAL OF EL, it says that “an act of kindness” is what changes Torren’s path. Again, you’re dealing with a wonderfully beguiling premise. What drew you to it?
GO: Each book tends to be different for me both in how the ideas come and how I end up writing it. For Vassal, Torren formed in my mind first and demanded his story be told. As he is in the book, he has secrets, but whether he knows it or not, he wants matters to be resolved, so he started poking at me to tell his story and that of his people. Sorry to be so vague, but I don’t want to give too much away. Let’s just say some unresolved issues he’s tried to avoid from his youth end up coming back and intruding into his life whether he wants to or not.
DE: You move between short fiction (in the anthologies) and novel-length fiction. Do you prefer one to the other, or do the characters and story dictate its length?
GO: I struggle with short fiction. I so much more enjoy the immersion of books since you get to share the world and vision for a longer period of time, and that was where I started. However, short fiction, due to its very nature, can be done faster! So I got into it due to the marketing possibilities and also to seed my name out there more. Plus it gives people a nice sample of what they might expect in terms of ‘voice’ in a longer work. Short stories are in structure and execution a little different from novels. Some people can do both, some only one or the other. I’m rather fortunate as I can get away with both kinds. But you don’t know the number of times I’ve turned in a short story to the crit group only to hear “This sounds like the beginning of a book!”. Oh my…
DE: How do you feel the different places you’ve “spent time” have enhanced your work?
GO: Everything that happens to you in life gets filed away in your subconscious. It’s a great place to throw in stuff for the creative
juices to use later. So by having gone or lived in as many different places as I have, I’ve accumulated (knowingly or not) a lot of info I’ve been able to use in my writing. People are people, but their setting can create different customs, different ways of dealing with things,
even beliefs. By having seen all these places, those differences have percolated into my head, so hopefully I can use that information when creating my own worlds and societies. No experience is ever lost, good or bad. The muse will use it eventually.
DE: The books you’ve written thus far are stand-alone. Do you have any interest in series work in the future? Have your characters been best-served by stand-alones thus far? What formed your decision?
GO: I know the ‘in’ thing right now are series, but I’ve not been able to go that route yet. As an author I am ruled by the muse more than myself at times. It’s not that I wouldn’t like to do sequels or series, just the characters or stories have not driven me in that direction. Which is rather sad too, as at least on two of my books I get asked quite
regularly if I plan to do a sequel. I would if the muse would let me! It was never a conscious decision though. I just go where the creativity takes me and it just hasn’t gone into a series mode…yet…!
Visit Gloria’s website at www.gloriaoliver.com for more information on her books.