Sunday, December 20, 2015

Book Tour - The Children of Darkness, By David Litwack


Author Name: David Litwack
Book Title: The Children of Darkness
Author Website/Blog Link: www.davidlitwack.com
Book Genre: Dystopian Science Fiction

Blurb/Synopsis of Book
Book one in the Seekers dystopian trilogy

"But what are we without dreams?"

A thousand years ago the Darkness came--a time of violence and social collapse when technology ran rampant. But the vicars of the Temple of Light brought peace, ushering in an era of blessed simplicity. For ten centuries they kept the madness at bay with "temple magic," eliminating the rush of progress that nearly caused the destruction of everything.

Orah and Nathaniel, have grew up in a tiny village, longing for more from life but unwilling to challenge the status quo. When Orah is summoned for a "teaching"—the brutal coming-of-age ritual that binds the young to the Light—Nathaniel follows in a foolhardy attempt to save her.
In the prisons of Temple City, they discover a secret that launches them on a journey to find the forbidden keep, where a truth from the past might unleash the potential of their people, but may also cost them their lives.
Review Quotes    "A tightly executed first fantasy installment that champions the exploratory spirit." -- Kirkus Reviews


"The plot unfolds easily, swiftly, and never lets the readers' attention wane... After reading this one, it will be a real hardship to have to wait to see what happens next." -- Feathered Quill Book Reviews

"... a fantastic tale of a world that seeks a utopian existence, well ordered, safe and fair for everyone... also an adventure, a coming-of-age story of three young people as they become the seekers, travelers in search of a hidden treasure - in this case, a treasure of knowledge and answers... a tale of futuristic probabilities... on a par with Huxley's Brave New World." -- Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

"The quality of its intelligence, imagination, and prose raises The Children of Darkness to the level of literature." -- Awesome Indies

"...a solid fantasy-dystopian offering, one that is not merely written by some author looking for a middling entry to the genre, but excellently crafted by an artist looking to make his mark... A timely novel beautiful in the simplicity of its writing and elegant in its underlying complexity." -- Eduardo Aduna for Readers' Favorite

"I found the world-building surrounding the people of the Ponds so descriptive that I was transported to their homes and way of life, and when the trio embarked on their journey, I could clearly picture them every step of the way. If you're looking for a classic fantasy quest wrapped in a fascinating, dark archaic world, then this novel will not disappoint you." -- K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

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Author Interview:

Out of all the characters in your book, who is your favorite to write?
I used to say that my favorite was Kailani from The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky. She’s so mysterious, but at the same time wise, na├»ve and vulnerable. Now that I’m nearly done with the Seekers series, I think I’d say Orah. She smart and passionate in her beliefs, and a natural leader, yet she always doubts herself and questions her decisions—a trait that would be a good thing in some of our real world leaders.

 
Is your book part of a series, and if so, how many will there be?
The Children of Darkness is Book one of the Seekers dystopian trilogy. The second book, The Stuff of Stars, has just published.

 
What are you working on now?
I’m working on the finale of the Seekers series, to be titled The Light of Reason. If all goes as planned, it will come out in November 2016.

 
Who do you look up to as a writer?
There are so many I love that have influenced my writing. I have always read cross genre. When I became an avid reader in my teens, I devoured fantasy and science fiction, but also literary fiction. I loved the works of Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, and of course, Tolkien, but also of Hemingway and Steinbeck.

 
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Writing a novel may be one of the hardest things you can do, so it’s all challenging. But nothing is harder than writing the first draft. I don’t yet know the characters that well and, while I have a general sense of where the story is heading, I can take a wrong turn at any point and have to redo months of work. When I hit that point where I’m terrified the story has gone off the rails, I take a break for a few days. Almost always, it’s not as bad as I feared, and I can fix the problem with a modest bit of work.

Once I’m beyond the first draft, the rest becomes just hard work. I do lots of revisions, but I find it easier to fix the story than to write it from scratch.

There’s a reason why Hemingway once said: “Write drunk, edit sober!”


Did you learn anything from writing your books and what was it?

Learning to be a good writer is a lifelong task, and perfection is a high bar. Stay humble and keep trying to improve.


Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

To each and every reader, we’re partners in the story. I use my craft, and you use your imagination to flesh out your own unique version of the story. If I’ve caused you to re-experience some of the most intense moments of your life, then I’ve succeeded as an author.

To quote Maya Angelou: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

 
Do you write by hand or on a computer?
In my youth, I used a typewriter, carbon paper and white-out (for those who remember). Thank goodness, never again. With my constant need to revise and my poor typing skills, it’s the word processor for me.

 
Do you plot your books completely before hand or do you let your imagination flow whilst in the writing process?
I usually conceive of a new book as a series of images and scenes, daydreaming about them while I finish work on the prior novel. I maintain a notes file for the new novel and do a rough draft of these scenes—a  very rough draft, what some people call "scaffolding" or “riff writing” like improvisation in jazz. The file can get pretty chaotic. Every now and then I make a feeble attempt to organize it (when I’m finishing up a novel, I try to avoid distractions and stay focused on getting it out to the publisher). By the time I’m ready to start the new novel, I usually have about 20,000 words of loosely connected prose—20-25% of the eventual novel but probably 80% of its essence. I take a couple of months to read, edit and organize that file into a dense plot outline. Then I start a new file from scratch, cutting and pasting prose as appropriate.

It’s a messy process in the early going, but unlike those who start with a more organized outline, I need that amount of writing to get to know the characters and live in the story.
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Amazon Link: But It Here

About the Author:

 The urge to write first struck at age sixteen when working on a newsletter at a youth encampment in the woods of northern Maine. It may have been the wild night when lightning flashed at sunset followed by the northern lights rippling after dark. Or maybe it was the newsletter's editor, a girl with eyes the color of the ocean. But he was inspired to write about the blurry line between reality and the fantastic.

Using two fingers and lots of white-out, he religiously typed five pages a day throughout college and well into his twenties. Then life intervened. He paused to raise two sons and pursue a career, in the process -- and without prior plan -- becoming a well-known entrepreneur in the software industry, founding several successful companies. When he found time again to daydream, the urge to write returned.

In this new stage of his life, he's published Along the Watchtower in June, 2013 and The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky in May, 2014. His next book, The Children of Darkness, is the first of the Seekers series, a dystopian trilogy, and will be published in June, 2015.

David and his wife split their time between Cape Cod, Florida and anywhere else that catches their fancy. He no longer limits himself to five pages a day and is thankful every keystroke for the invention of the word processor.