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Dreams Just Became Powerful and Weaponizable

Avinash Naduvath Author Interview

Mindbender follows six people that are existing in a strange and mostly deserted town where they must figure out what has happened to them and why they are being drawn together. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

My wife and brother-in-law are strong lucid dreamers. When the topic came up for the first time I was surprised at the concept and marvelled at how someone could really control dreams. My thought was how could I do this myself. When I realized it takes years of practice to really perfect and implement, I thought how a larger force like the military could use virtuosos of lucid dreaming to manipulate and extract information from unknowing civilians. Dreams just became powerful and weaponizable.

The characters are unique and interesting in this novel. Did you create an outline for the characters in the story before you started writing or did the characters’ personalities grow organically as you were writing?

I had considered one big plot and wrote all the characters simultaneously. I wanted to bring out the impact that childhood trauma has on kids and how it begins to fracture the personality. As someone (even a psychiatrist) who is treating or trying to understand more about the depth of a person’s mind, it is almost impossible to understand the true nature of damage and each action might have caused. That was how the characters came by. The different characters reflect different types of people and how they need to be handled differently to really understand and relate to them. Some parts of their personalities were plot requirements but mostly they were living the plot and building their personality.

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

Some complex themes I had to really research and look into were lucid dreaming and life with a tough childhood. I didn’t really have a tough childhood so the basis of Pogo’s dad has been my visualization of other characters and people and I had to read some really sad stories of survivors who had overcome a tough childhood. Building an evil person from some gruesome survivor stories was hard. Similarly, while both my wife and her brother were good lucid dreamers they did not know how or why they could do it or even how it could be possible so I had to understand what lucid dreaming really was and how the entire premise of a controllable dream brings limitations on world building.

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

At this point I have a brief idea on the topics I want the next book to be based on but apart from that I am building a plot now so probably in a year or so it should be done. My interests are always on topics which are least understood and have more space for imaginative inception.

Author Links: Amazon | GoodReads

It all begins with a scream.

Pogo, a young lovable kid, wakes up to the scream and is scared that his mom has left him. Joshua a smart, meticulous boy, is disturbed by the scream and begins observing strange incidents in the world he just woke up in. Sarah, a simple senescent lady, wakes up to the scream and realizes her daughter and husband are missing.

Concurrently, a girl has been murdered at the only visible hotel in this world, and its hotel manager, Kobi, is not sure how the situation needs to be handled. There are no police around, and he teams up with Tonks, the owner of a diner, and Klaus, the owner of a supermarket, to figure out who killed the girl.

Six seemingly unrelated people embark on a journey through this vibrant, mostly deserted world, but nothing is what it seems, and this anomalous world will stop at nothing to assure the convergence of their paths.

I Love Adventure Stories

Alan Priest Author Interview

SkyWorld Saga Foundation follows the founder of Sky City as he embarks on a mission across Earth and space to save his crowning achievement. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

I love adventure stories. Having read Clive Cussler and Tom Clancy growing up, I recently began reading the original adventure authors, Jules Verne, and H. Rider Haggard. Journey to the Center of the Earth and King Solomon’s Mines were the inspiration for the epic adventure theme I tried to create. And because I am a huge Isaac Asimov fan, his original Foundation series was what drove me to the space theme. My hope was to create a story that kept moving and also connected future technology to today.

Ben Dawson is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind his character’s development?

Ben is a combination of many people I worked with in Silicon Valley. I’ve seen many incredibly talented people not succeed through no fault of their own except a lack of aggressiveness. It was important to show Ben’s path to success was different than most, but still, incredible in the results. Also, he realized family is more important than success and with the help of his wife, Paige, kept that his number one priority. It’s an idealized personality, but that’s the joy in creating characters, they can be an ideal to strive for.

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

This book revolves around the relationships between family and friends when they are put in stressful situations. While I wanted to write an adventure story about the near future, it felt hollow if the characters didn’t have strong bonds between them. Also, I wanted to explore how technology could allow for a floating city and what it could look like besides a large hunk of metal in the sky. Finally, I did feel a need to present the problems with government bureaucracies that lose sight of working for their citizens and instead focus on their own careers and power struggles.

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

While I will be returning to the SkyWorld Saga, I’m currently working on a story about time travel with an extended family. This will place husbands, wives, and their children, in various places in the past. They will have adventures experiencing the past but have to learn how to put their family issues behind them and rely on each other’s strengths. if they want to get back to their present. My goal is to have it available July 2023.

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In 2070, Ben Dawson was on the cusp of changing mankind, until mankind intervened. And then, instead of celebrating his crowning achievement of launching the world’s first airborne city, he was fighting for its survival. Threatened with imminent personal and financial ruin, Ben assembles a team that will embark on a mission across Earth and space to save Sky City.

Racing against the takeover of Sky City by The Department of Space, his team finds themselves with an impossible timeline. Forced to accelerate an already insane plan involving space colonies, moon mining and, per the Department of Space, Crimes Against Humanity, they will need all the cunning and grit they possess for their mission to work. But more likely, it will fail, leaving the Dawson family and colleagues with less than nothing.

Ben and his team realize for them to have any chance at success, they will need to rely on each other and learn the fundamental meaning of trust. If they do that, then they could come away with the biggest heist in history.

Mindbender

What is reality? That is the question that pervades the mind of young Pogo from the outset of this twisting story. The reader is introduced to the concept of lucid dreaming, a loving mother, and an abusive father within the first few pages – before everything seems to shatter without Pogo retaining a memory of virtually anything. Where is his mother? His father? Why can he not remember his school or his best friend?

Most importantly, who is the stranger standing in his kitchen making his favorite breakfast, and what does Joshua have to do with him when he doesn’t remember much, either? Even worse, who is their neighbor, Sarah, who also has no memory of anything, including her husband, Marko, and their daughter, Julia?

Something isn’t right in this little town, but the more the inconsistencies pile up, the crazier the mystery seems to get! On the other side are the three mysterious antagonists, Tonks, Klaus, and Kobi, who have their own reasons for being in this world but may wind up collateral damage while searching for the truth.

Written from the first-person points of view of each central character in the tale, Mindbender, by Avinash Naduvath, follows several characters in a strange, vaguely unsettling world the reader quickly realizes, long before the protagonists, is actually a mental construct.

Naduvath’s writing style is intriguing and thought-provoking, and the plot itself is interesting enough to keep the reader turning pages simply to find out what could possibly be happening next. Discovering the truth about the novel’s name only comes toward the end, almost in passing, but suits the storyline perfectly. Finding out the culprit and how the said culprit is found out is a surprising and pleasantly unexpected twist.

Mindbender is a complex metaphysical hard science fiction novel that captivates readers from the opening pages. Following along as the story leads all the characters to a convergence point will have readers on edge trying to decipher the mystery of what has happened to them and their world.

Pages: 335 | ASIN : B09Y9675FX

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SkyWorld Saga Foundation

It’s the 2070s, and Ben Dawson has built a flying city made of hundreds of flying boats he invented. But Ben’s Sky City is threatened by the Department of Space, looking to take it over to score political points. Now Ben and his small team of loyalists must embark on a daring mission to retain control of Sky City —one that involves space travel, an asteroid, unlikely allies, and going up against formidable forces.

Alan Priest’s SkyWorld Saga Foundation is an upbeat science fiction novel that is bursting at the seams with intrigue and that curious allure that most futuristic stories have. The book is a breezy read punctuated by pulse-pounding moments of action that feels like they are fit for cinematic movie scenes.

The author utilizes simple but elegant writing to tell an imaginative story. This writing style helps keep readers focused on the creative world that Alan Priest has created and the clever storyline that delivers some stunning moments of sci-fi melodrama. This is a spirited adventure story that explores humanity’s ingenuity, resilience, and bravery contrasted with some of the more unsavory elements of humanity’s traits like power and a conspiratorial streak.

I was engrossed with the detailed world that is being built in this dystopian thriller. The world that the author is creating seems immense and begs to be explored in further novels. What is presented in this book serves as an interesting backdrop for the compelling cast of characters. I really appreciated the attention to detail that went into creating the backstory and I look forward to seeing how this evolves as the series continues.

While this can be considered hard sci-fi I appreciated the well-balanced ‘techsplaining’ that is used to drive this story forward without losing readers. Character development is also one of Priest’s strengths, as Skyworld Saga contains characters that have distinct and relatable, if not understandable, personalities. And the author really knows how to create genuinely unlikable characters too. I love how he throws wrenches into his protagonists’ plans and introduces new conflict to ramp up the drama and suspense that will eventually conclude in moments of fist-pumping glee for his readers.

SkyWorld Saga Foundation is an exciting science fiction story that builds a complex world with an organic sense of adventure that never forgets to entertain the reader.

Pages: 344 | ASIN: B09Z1S3M3Z

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Something Fun To Write About

Isaac Petrov Author Interview

Advent of Dreamtech follows a young woman that wants to change how humans live in a post alien contact world. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

My main inspiration was a short story I wrote when I was a kid: a little boy, unhappy, alone, with only his dreams as an escape of harsh reality. He eventually learns to control his dreams, and then enter the dreams of others. Never really wrote the end, but when I was thinking about something fun to write about for my debut novel, this old story was very present in my mind. The character of Edda wants to change things and faces a lot of challenges.

What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

I wanted to explore the accumulation of power, and how it changes the individual. Edda’s journey through the trilogy is a prime example. Her hunger for power is only instrumental to achieve her real end, which makes her quite special.

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

The one theme that permeates the trilogy is the impact on our survival as a species on the struggle between truth and propaganda.

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

Book 3, the last of the trilogy, is already in the oven. Should be out, warm and delicious by April 2022.

Author Links: Facebook | Website

IT IS DECEMBER 2399.

Civilization has long collapsed—the legacy of an inescapable disease. Only a faction adapted to lifespans of a mere twenty-seven years, spreading into the global rural utopia known as Goah’s Gift. A happy society, oblivious to its own fragility.

A STEP AWAY FROM EXTINCTION.

Welcome to the history seminar of Professor Miyagi of the University of Lunteren-Deviss. Using the latest twenty-sixth century dream sensorial technology, you and your fellow students are about to dive deep into the momentous events when doom was playing dice with humanity.

AND WINNING.

This is the story of a badass woman that meets an alien deep in her dreams. An alien with an agenda.

This is the story of a world-shaking religious revolution. In a deeply religious world.

This is the story of DREAMTECH, and the impact of alien technology on a dying human world.

The Omicron Six

The Omicron Six by [Endy Wright]

The plot of The Omicron Six by Endy Wright revolves around two young boys, Cooper Callister and Coupe Daschelete, who had vastly different upbringings. While one of them was raised in the midst of abuse, another one had a healthy and protected environment while growing up. The teens discover that they might possess some special powers after Coupe protects Cooper from a bully. Their lives then become intricately intertwined.

Things take a dark turn when people all over the country start disappearing in a mysterious way. The boys end up at a place where they meet four others with similar superhuman abilities, and an impending doom awaits them. In the face of imminent danger and difficulty, the boys have to stick by each other’s side to protect the world around them.

To find out the source of their powers, and why they have been bestowed with them, you have to delve deep into this riveting novel. The author puts forward significant intriguing questions about the nature of scientific experiments and compels us to consider their ethical validity. The book toys with the idea that by tweaking the genetic components of humans, we can make them even more powerful, so much that they can possess superhuman powers. Readers are left asking the question, where should we draw the line when it comes to scientific advancements?

Even though the book is quite a long read, its fast-paced nature makes it thoroughly enjoyable. In fact, at certain times the reader is left craving for more. An unusual amalgamation of suspense, science fiction, and endless adventure, this is a book that you would want to read multiple times, to fully grasp its essence.

I was surprised to find out that this thrilling science fiction story was 300 pages because it doesn’t feel that long. Once you get to know the characters it’s easy to get wrapped up in the story. The easy flowing dialogue and sharp prose are always moving the story forward. I was enthralled with the story, even though it contains some graphic descriptions of abuse and violence, it never seems out of place.

The Omicron Six has a gripping storyline with brilliant character development that take a thought-provoking dive into the ethical dilemma of scientific experiments. This is a provocative and relentlessly entertaining science fiction novel that was hard to put down.

Pages: 304 | ASIN:  B0916FH9YH

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The Oppenheimer Alternative

The Oppenheimer Alternative by [Robert J. Sawyer]

The Oppenheimer Alternative by Robert J Sawyer is an exciting science novel inspired by true events. The book is sure to keep readers turning pages from the start. The story follows Robert Oppenheimer, the book’s main protagonist who many consider to be the father of the atomic bomb. Oppenheimer, a brilliant physicist, is put in charge of America’s project to create the atomic bomb as World War two rages across the globe. In a race against time, the protagonist is forced to work extremely hard as America seeks to outwit its allies and enemies alike in the quest to discover the strongest weapon ever made.

As ideologies collide, Robert is forced to choose between his beliefs and what is right. The story is set across various backgrounds but the main being wartime United States as seen through the eyes of various scientists who were hired by the government to create the greatest weapon known to man. The author expertly uses dialogue to engage his audience in the story creating a truly captivating aura around the book in general. The use of vivid description by the author proved to be a key aspect in promoting the development of the plot and also in engaging the author’s audience. There is good character development in the story as the author describes the protagonist’s emotions and feelings in the most vivid way possible keeping the story interesting from the beginning.

This riveting story tackles various moral issues that face humanity in such a tumultuous time. The author clearly shows the struggles that people in positions of influence and power face in maintaining a picture of perfection and fulfilling expectations placed upon them by society in general. This book really captures the feel of that era, and I enjoyed how emotional this novel is, which I suppose was a surprise to me as I didn’t expect it to be this dramatic.

The story has several bits of foreign language which you may not understand, but certainly lends the book some authenticity. In addition to this, there are several references to poetry which the reader may not know, but is still thought-provoking. Robert J. Sawyer has crafted a master piece of science fiction that presents an alternate history that is absolutely thrilling.

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An Argument Inside My Head

Tilmer Wright Author Interview

Tilmer Wright Author Interview

The Bit Dance follows a teen genius who must outwit an ex-KGB agent who uses a cutting edge toy for nefarious purposes. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling story?

I have spent 30 years as an IT professional. That provided the technical facet to the story. The fascination with bees and their built-in intelligence comes from my uncle, Fred Ingram. He kept bees to support his fruit trees. He knew a lot about bees and spent time talking to me about them. That has always been in the back of my mind stewing among my technology-oriented thoughts. It all kind of emerged as a complete stew in this book.

Kayla is a intriguing and well developed character. What were some ideas that guided her development?

Thank you for the kind words about Kayla. I lean hard on my characters to drive my stories. They are of utmost importance and their internal drive, motives, and personalities have to take precedence over my own. Sometimes, that ends up in an argument inside my head. It’s one I have to let the character win. Kayla started out in early drafts as a male of the same age. I have two daughters, both older than Kayla. The struggles I have had trying to drive my girls to be the most they can be in a world that isn’t always easy for females while simultaneously being a loving father that allows them to be themselves drove me to change that character to a female. The whole father-daughter challenge is complex and can be even more so if a father is a driven personality and the daughter has skills of her own that may lead her in multiple directions. I think it added a lot to the story.

I enjoyed the technological explanations you provided for the eBots. What kind of research did you undertake for this book to get these as accurate as possible?

I did a lot of reading about the Bees Algorithm to understand how it is being used for real-life applications today. I also had to dig into a lot about how communication technologies like Bluetooth work. Other things like the technology borrowed from robotic vacuum cleaners and file-sharing technology used by social media is pretty easy to research, but it does take time to get it right. I also made sure that the history around the KGB and other Soviet-era topics was right. Koslov’s back-story had to be convincing. The car he drove is real. The explosives he used were thoroughly researched. The history of the KGB and the crumbling of the old Soviet Union is all accurate. The sniper rifle mentioned in the story is real and accurately described as well. When you write stories that might attract sci-fi fans, you have to realize that they are picky people when it comes to realism – or at least the suspension of disbelief.

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

I am working on a young adult-oriented fantasy novel set in 1976. The protagonists are 11-year-olds (a boy and a girl). It centers around the concept of multiple universes and a means to travel between them. It’s slow going because my day job still dominates my life. If I could earn enough from writing to pay the bills, I could change all of that. That story is probably around 40% of the way to first draft. I’m hoping to have it out before the end of this year. The working title is Talisgate. I wrote one book before The Bit Dance. It’s called Motes. It’s a first-contact kind of story with an unusual twist. You can find it on Amazon.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

What happens when millions of tiny minds find a way to work together? At what point do they become one? At what point are they no longer merely machinery, but actually alive? Kayla Henry is a genius. She has a grasp of technology that far surpasses that of people three times her tender age of fourteen. She has mastered every skill she has attempted to acquire – except the ability to impress her father and appease his overbearing perfectionism. The eBot is the newest offering from her father’s employer that will set the company’s course for as much as a decade. It is a revolutionary toy endowed with groundbreaking technology and an online community that will encourage consumers to share their experiences. Kayla is fascinated by it and longs to be a part of it in any way she can. When an ex-KGB officer appropriates the technology for his own nefarious purposes, it responds in ways no one could predict – or even imagine.

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