Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Featured Author: Dan O'Brien

Welcome to the fourth day of The Path of the Fallen blog tour. It will run until July 8th and will feature excerpts, new author interviews each day, character interviews, and a casting call by the author. But first, here is the obligatory blurb about the novel to settle you into this sprawling fantasy world:

Set against the backdrop of the tundra and a world desperate for hope, the journey of a young man, E'Malkai, will come to define a realm that has been broken by an evil that does not sleep. A bitter betrayal, and the inception of a war that will consume the world, forces E'Malkai to confront the past and undertake a pilgrimage that is his birthright. Follow him on his journey and be transformed. 

Interview with Dan O'Brien:

Are the names of the characters in your novels important? 

Depends on the book really. Sometimes they are very important, sometimes I pull them out of thin air. Once a character has a name though, I can very rarely change it. A character’s name becomes quite real once it is assigned. 

What about the titles of your novels? 

They can be important, though they are usually just pithy one-liners or the usage of one word to describe an entire feeling. 

Are there any occupational hazards to being a novelist? 

Yelling at a computer screen, excessive coffee, lack of sleep: that’s what comes to mind immediately. 

What's your favorite fruit? 

Alas, it was once a tie between bananas and mangoes, but I am now allergic to both of those. It would probably be blackberries or blueberries at this point. Perhaps even a melon of some kind. Let me get back to you on that.

An excerpt for your enjoyment:

The Shaman

Deep beneath the sands of the Desert of the Forgotten there was a cavern. This crevice was one of thousands upon thousands that burrowed deep below the surface of Terra. Within this place lay the domain of the entity known to the humans as the Shaman. 

His true name was Ti’ere’yuernen. 

An old word that meant, in as close a translation as was possible, the beginning without an end and the end that was born of the beginning in the tongue of those that claimed Terra when it was still covered in shadow, and the Light had not yet graced the surface. 

In the first of times, during the Last Age of the Shadow and the First Coming of the Light, the Believer had not yet come to walk the world. There were not yet humans, only the legions of the dark that reveled in every corner of Terra. 

Since the Coming of the Light there had been nine Creators, each held the power of the Believer and was imbued with the essence of creation. Yet, of those nine, only two had been successful in wielding the power for longer than a moment. One such being had been Malkai Armen, a child born of the tundra. He had no mother, no father, and no childhood. As a child he walked from the cold into the arms of the Fallen, as if it were providence. 

As he matured and aged, it was obvious that he was no more a mortal man than the tundra a beach. So he searched for the power of the earth, the energy harnessed from the very essence of the Light––the gift of Terra. 

This was long after the coming of the Intelligence and the creation of Culouth, though Malkai knew of neither. He used his power to seal away a home for the Fallen, create a sanctuary beneath the ice. 

And he did so, harnessing the power of the Believer for the length of five hundred and forty-seven days to the minute before it engulfed him. The energy was returned to the earth, and his life was taken with it. Two generations later, his grandson Ryan walked away with the very same power. It corrupted him as no other before him, and this taint allowed him to walk with the power of the shadow for the past seventeen years. 

An orb rested at the center of the cave. The iridescent flowing energies faded to black as the man who sat cross-legged before it opened his calm gray eyes. His eyelids fluttered as he breathed out. He pushed himself to his feet, throwing a damp fabric over the orb with a snap of his wrist. 

“Incorrigible human,” muttered the Shaman. 

As he stretched his arms out, the ornate beads on both wrists knocked against each other in a rhythmic pattern. There were walls of shimmering energy all around him. He walked through one, his voice carrying as he did.

His words were like a song. “You shall not long use the powers of the Believer in service of the shadow. There is another who will take your place, the true heir to the throne of the Light.”

He continued to mumble as the energy consumed him. His words were drowned out, leaving the cavern silent and empty. There was no one left to perceive the solitude of the keeper of the power of the Believer.

About the author: 
A psychologist, author, editor, philosopher, martial artist, and skeptic, he has published several novels and currently has many in print, including: The End of the World Playlist, Bitten, The Journey, The Ocean and the Hourglass, The Path of the Fallen, The Portent, and Cerulean Dreams. He recently started a consultation business, Amalgam Consulting.

Bitten (US)
| End of the World Playlist (US) | Cerulean Dreams (US) | The Journey (US)|

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