Author Interview: Dyrk Ashton

Hi Rachel! Thank you for having me on Basic Book Blog.
Author Name: Dyrk Ashton

Title of Book(s): Paternus

A short description of book(s)/series: Contemporary Mythic Fantasy, New Adult Genre (as opposed to Teen or YA, though savvy 16 or 17 year olds could probably escape without permanent damage). Takes place today, in this world. Centers around 17 year Fi Patterson and her “boyfriend” Zeke--and some very interesting characters who just plain shouldn’t exist, but they do… they really do…

What inspired you to write? And what was the inspiration for this book? I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember, on and off, my entire life. As an inspiring filmmaker I lived in Los Angeles for nearly six years where I wrote several screenplays. They were read by a number of studios but never produced. I did have a proposal for a TV series optioned by Francis Ford Coppola’s American Zoetrope Television but it got turned down by the financiers. Nature of the biz/beast. I also did some acting, which was great. So, a bit of almost famous. But I degress… Paternusis an entirely new story I began writing  a few years because I wanted to read it and couldn’t find anything that quite fit the bill, at least not for adults. It’s inspired by my fascinations with mythology and natural history, big action and epic stories. It pulls together several (clearly ridiculous) ideas I’ve had for quite some time, which I refined, filled in with a tremendous amount of research (100s of pages, also pretty ridiculous), and combined with a fictional (or is it?) cosmology in which all these crazy things could actually exist, and happen. Enough people loved the various drafts that I decided to go ahead and self-publish (I’ve played the agent game in the film biz and decided to just bypass that whole thing). The response so far has been tremendous and entirely unexpected. And the book doesn’t even come out until May 1st. Very exciting and a little head-spinning at the same time.

What is the last book you read? Golden Son, the last book in the Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown. I devoured those things. Pierce takes some liberties with science in his “science fiction,” but it is “fiction” so that’s acceptable. He has a real knack for keeping things moving and especially forking the story into entirely unexpected directions - and making them work. Great fun stuff. And he’s just in his twenties. And good-looking to boot. Little bastard ;)

Who is/are your favorite author(s)? That is such a tough one because l like so many. I think I have to choose Roger Zelazny (may he rest in peace). He has such a great style, knack for description, sense of humor and insane imagination. One of his greatest talents is knowing how to create tremendous impact by what he doesn’t say as much as what he does.

What is/are your favorite book(s)? Oh that’s mean :)  Again, a real tough one , and it’s going to be a lame answer because it’s Tolkien’s The Lord of the Ringstrilogy (I’m counting that as one book). It still stands as THE epic fantasy novel as far as I’m concerned. In western philosophy they say that G. W. Friedrich Hegel is the 800 lb. gorilla, that everything written since his works is a “footnote to Hegel.” I kind of feel the same way about Tolkien.

After all of your hard work, what does it feel like to be a published author? Well I’m not exactly sure since the book doesn’t come out until May 1 (print and eBook on Amazon, eBook on B&N, iBooks and Kobo - shameless plug there), but I think I’m beginning to get a sense of it. I think it first really hit me when I received the first printed proof copy in the mail. That was very strange, and thrilling. And, you know, I’m amazed, truly excited and humbled by the response to the manuscript and now the ARCs, but I feel that I’ve kind of already accomplished 95% percent or even more of my dream, which is tremendously satisfying.

Thanks again Rachel, this has been a joy!

All the best,

Rachel Beyer

I am a full time engineer and a part time blogger/writer. I am passionate about reading, writing, biking, volleyball, and my pets.