Broken Pieces

Jack Canon's American Destiny

Author Interview – Nadine Ducca

Sunday, August 11, 2013

What books did you love growing up? As a kid, I loved The Berenstein Bears! Whenever my mom and I used to go to Target, we’d always check if there was a new Berenstein book! I still have my entire collection. If I ever have children, I’ll read them The Berenstein Bears, although, knowing how possessive and protective I am of my childhood books, I’ll probably tell the kids “you can look but don’t touch!”

Who is your favorite author? I don’t really have a favorite author, just like I don’t have a favorite film director or music band. I enjoy books. I might love a book from a certain author, but hate the next one. This happened with Ursula Q Le Guin. I really enjoyed her Earthsea novels, but was disappointed and annoyed by The Left Hand of Darkness.

Nonetheless, some of my favorite authors are: Stephen King (although I admit there are some books I haven’t been able to finish, see: The Tommyknockers), Phillip Pullman (His Dark Materials is a captivating trilogy), Richard Matheson (I Am Legend is the only novel by him that I’ve read, but it’s one of my all-time favorites), and Robert Sheckley (the master of satirical sci-fi).

What book genre do you adore? I’m an unconditional fan of science fiction, and some fantasy books (I’m not so big on the elves and dwarves…). I also enjoy some historical fiction, such as the classic The Pillars of the Earth.

What book should everybody read at least once?

Well, this is simply my opinion as a sci-fi lover, but I believe everyone should read 2001: A Space Odyssey. I admit the first few chapters on the moon might be yawn-inducing, but the scenes with Dave and HAL are absolutely chilling. I remember reading this novel as a teen before going to bed, and it felt like I was reading a horror story.

Are there any books you really don’t enjoy? I absolutely, positively, definitely can’t stomach romance, which is a shame since it seems to be so popular nowadays.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live? Man, I’m living proof that life experiences influence writing! Just look at the mess my characters are in. The two heroes are the Cross brothers: Tristan and Eneld. At the beginning of the novel, their relationship is strained, basically because they haven’t seen each other in many years and Eneld (the younger brother) has abandonment issues regarding Tristan. The characters don’t have a known family apart from each other and their deceased mother.

How has my own life experience influenced these characters? When I was 11, my parents got divorced. At the age of 12, my mother took me with her to live in Spain. We left behind our entire family in California, and we didn’t have absolutely anybody waiting for us in Spain. Sometimes I still wonder what the heck got into her to make that kind of decision. My father remarried and I have a step-sister and a half-brother. However, the long-distance relationship is difficult to manage.

Do you see the similarities between my life and my characters’ lives? We’re all estranged from our families—and I only realized this after writing Tristan and Eneld’s backstory!

However, it’s not all drama for our heroes; they’ve also been influenced by the beautiful place where I now live. Tristan and Eneld grew up in Barcelona, Catalonia, and you can catch some dashes of Catalan culture in their adventure throughout Serving Time.

Where do you get your inspiration from? Sometimes, ideas just pop up inside my head without even knocking. Other times, I might be watching a documentary on a new scientific breakthrough, or planets that have just been discovered, and I have to get up and rush to get a notebook to jot down a great idea for a short story or flash fiction. My critique buddies are also a fabulous source of inspiration. Their advice and suggestions have helped me add much more depth to my novels.

Music also inspires—although it can’t have lyrics or I get too distracted. When I write my characters up against the wall and I’m having trouble finding inspiration, I usually either listen to some music or grab pen and paper and start writing out the situation I need to solve. Sometimes I doodle or write gibberish, just anything that pops into my head, and usually I find a thread I can follow until I reach that real nugget.

Serving Time

Life and death have been industrialized. The Forge, the birthplace of every soul, is a rumbling factory owned by the goddess Time, managed by Lucifer, and powered by the labor of demons and imps. In this dystopian world, a renegade interplanetary pilot running from his past doesn’t stand a chance.

Handling Neptunian meth and dodging security cannons are all in a day’s work for Tristan Cross—not that he’s one to complain. Working for the smuggling company StarCorp is an improvement over what he used to do for a living.

However, when StarCorp gives Tristan a one-way ticket into the brainwashed—and disturbingly suicidal—Loyal League, he decides to run from the company and start a new life in the only safe haven he knows: Earth. With the help of his brother, Tristan embarks on the most hazardous journey of his life, one that will place him at Time’s mercy. Little does he know the demons running the universe are craving a feast, and his own soul is the next item on the menu.

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Genre – Science Fiction/Fantasy

Rating – Adult

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