Jay Posey’s debut novel, THREE, will be out on July 30th from Angry Robot Books, and not only did we get him to answer a few questions about it, but we’ve got 2 giveaways going on, so be sure to check out the details at the bottom of the post!
Thanks for having me! I’ve pretty much always enjoyed making up stories, but I don’t think it was really until I was in my twenties that I thought I might be able to do writing as a profession. I was primarily interested in game development, so I studied computer science, and then spent a number of years building an eclectic resume; I did tech support for a game company, web development for a start-up, web application development for a university. Then I spent a couple of years doing freelance writing, and then came back to game development at Red Storm Entertainment. That’s a place where I was finally able to put both sides of my brain together at last, doing both game design and writing as a Senior Narrative Designer.
Will you tell us about your brand new book, Three, and what inspired you to write it?
Three is a post-apocalyptic story about a reluctant gunman who escorts a dying woman and her son across an urban wasteland, while being pursued by dangerous elements from her past.
The story was really the result of a lot of different ideas and influences that accumulated over time. On a grand scale, I have a lot of different things I’m interested in, and I knew I’d never be able to put them all together in any sort of coherent way unless I created a world where it could all make sense together. That was part of the challenge for me, to see if I could make a world where all these disparate elements fit together.
But on a smaller scale, I think the heart of the story came from a much more personal place. I think there’s a lot out there that holds romantic love up as a sort of pinnacle of human experience, and sometimes builds up a false expectation of what actual human relationships look like. So in this story, I really wanted to explore some ideas about sacrificial love.
Post-apocalyptic western with a splash of cyberpunk is probably pretty close. That definitely captures the general setting and tone of the book, though the story itself is much more about the characters than it is about the world.
Most people assume that the main character is an author’s favorite character to write. Was that the case with you, or was there another that you particularly had fun with?
I think that was true for me in this case, though I had a lot of fun with one of the bad guys in the book too, named Dagon. Three (the main character) was a pretty well-formed character for me, right off the bat. Even though I had a tough time trying to figure out how he’d manage to get out of some of the trouble I put him in, I never really had to struggle to figure out what his motivations were or how he would respond to any given situation. Dagon, on the other hand, was a like a slow revelation for me. I knew generally who he was, but every time he showed up in a scene, I felt like I was discovering something new about him. And sometimes he insisted on showing up in scenes that I wasn’t planning on him appearing in, so that was kind of an unusual and fun experience.
What do you hope to see readers take away from Three?
I’m not sure that there’s any one particular thing I want people to get out of the book necessarily. Reading can be such a personal experience, and I think different aspects will stand out to people in different ways. Mostly I hope readers feel like it’s a story of substance; that it was well worth their time, and that there’s something meaningful or moving for them to get out of it personally.
Are there any particular novels or authors that have inspired you and your writing?
J.R.R. Tolkien is probably the biggest influence in terms of why I write, though it probably doesn’t really show in the how; the way he thought and talked about the importance of Story in our lives and culture has had a lasting impact on me certainly. And I think William Gibson stands out for me, too. The opening sentence of Neuromancer is still one of the most efficient and effective lines for setting tone I’ve ever read.
What do you like to see in a good book?
Oof. There are so many ways to appreciate books. I’m definitely drawn to authors who have a facility with language; people who have a knack of phrasing things in sometimes unexpected ways that nevertheless perfectly capture an image or sensation or experience. I’m also a big fan of books that spark new and interesting ideas, or make connections for me that I’d never made before. And of course any book that creates a feeling that I’m exploring a totally new world is exciting for me.
When you’re not busy at work on your next project, how do you like to spend your free time?
It’s probably not a surprise, but reading is one of my favorite things to do. I also have been known to play the occasional video game (or twelve), I play the guitar, and I’m a big fan of hiking and archery, and I do a little rock climbing when I can get the chance. And a significant portion of my free time goes to just being with my family.
What’s next for you?
I’m finishing up the next book in the Duskwalker series at the moment, and then after that I’m probably going to take a step back and see what my creative brain wants to do next. I’ve got a couple of other projects on the backburner at the moment, and I know I’ve got at least one more Duskwalker book in me, if readers have interest.
**Each stop on this Blog Tour of Three by Jay Posey has a unique question. Be sure to enter your answers into the giveaway by dropping by My Shelf Confessions and enter your answers in the rafflecopter widget! You can answer as many or as few as you like as each answered question gets you an extra entry, and answers can be found in many ways, so be sure to read over the details at My Shelf Confessions (Ends 8/12). There are 2 copies of the book up for grabs in this one, and some answers come from the extract posted at the bottom of this post (and at My Shelf Confessions).
Here’s the question for my stop: Question #8 – “The protagonist is referred to as what in the book description?”
Now, for the My Bookish Ways Giveaway:
The world has collapsed, and there are no heroes any more.
But when a lone gunman reluctantly accepts the mantel of protector to a young boy and his dying mother against the forces that pursue them, a hero may yet arise.
File Under: Science Fiction [ Three For All | Apocalyptic Wasteland | A Journey Home | Fear the Weir ]
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