I Imagine A Lot Of Strange Stuff

Darren Joy
Darren Joy Author Interview

A Viral Imperium follows an undead exiled thief who sets out to save his sister and must wrestle for control of a vicious magic that threatens to devour him. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

I’ve always loved characters like Iskaral Pust from Malazan Book of the Fallen, a servant of shadow who’s also nuts. A minor character, but one whom I could never get enough of. Same with Tyrion Lannister from GOT’s, with his unique wit and turn of phrase. When I decided Threadfin was undead and I gave him a magic that was trying to gobble him up, the story evolved quickly with such characters in mind. The entire world grew from Threadfin. Once I had him, I had the story, and the series. I also don’t mind admitting that I suffer from Functional Neurological Disorder (FND), and during the worst times of my illness, I often imagined it was a form of magic draining the strength out of me. I imagine a lot of strange stuff, but some of that went into Threadfin’s development too. There were times, I felt undead myself. I think, without FND, I might not have created him the way I did.

Threadfin is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

Threadfin isn’t a hero, at least, not in the usual sense. He’s no coward either, but he has suffered damage by experiences both real and perceived. He’ll run, if running is the best option. The one constant he’s always had in his life is his sister, and when she’s in danger, there’s no question he will do whatever he can to save her. He has a clear view of the line between the living and the undead, but even when this becomes blurred, he has a strong sense of right and wrong, of a stronger impulse to protect, even if he grumbles about doing so. Just an ordinary guy, who happens to be undead. I didn’t want him to be a hero or a typical undead character with dark motives. Threadfin is just someone who happened to be born undead, and who is thrust into situations he’d rather not be in. However, when he is, he knows what he has to do, and sets about doing it.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

The main theme I explored has to do with our fear of what’s different. We see it all the time with racism, sexism, homophobia – the list is endless. Imagine if the undead existed, or giants for that matter, and they weren’t all that bad as folks go. No different from us. How would we react? Often, in society we see segregation of those not like us, those who are just too different, whether it be for cultural, religious, racial, or other reasons. I also wanted to explore the idea of magic itself. Magic can be equated with power, with the ability to harm, or to do good. If magic existed in the real world, what would that look like? Would militaries, governments, or the elite have control of it? Would some types of magic be considered evil and others good? Or would magic simply be a destructive force, all good overshadowed? I have no idea, but it’s fun to explore such themes.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

Currently, I am working on book 2, A Malignant Fetch, which is available for pre-order already, and will be on sale from November 8th 2021 on Amazon. The story will again follow Threadfin Todder and some new characters as they enter the world of the Grim. While Threadfin’s magic is on the blink, his reflection is up to no good, and feeling like the most useless undead mage ever, he sets out to find the girl who stole existence, and get them both back. Not to mention, to do something about that dratted reflection of his.

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook | Website

The plagues had ended, and the purges had wiped out those grave-maggot scum … or so they thought.
Threadfin Todder is undead, an exiled thief with little magic worth spit. When he learns of a threat to his sister, he sets out to save her.
Brother exiled, father murdered, and hunted by a pock-faced usurper on the throne, Aiyana Todralan fights to save her people.
Pursued by a shapeshifter who wants his half-soul, Threadfin must reach Aiyana before a horde of invading giants. To succeed, he must wrestle for control of a magic so vicious, it may devour him.
Brother and sister are thrust into a maelstrom of fantastical beasts, fallen angels, and undead souls. They will discover an enemy so powerful it threatens to unravel existence itself.
A Viral Imperium is an epic dark fantasy for fans of Greek, Roman and biblical mythologies, dark magic, and lost souls.

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The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on August 25, 2021, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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