Saturday, March 7, 2015

Pen, Author of Nero's Fiddle

nero's fiddle, pen, science fiction, female protagonists, apocalyptic
Today we are interviewing Pen, author of the thriller/action/sci-fi novel Nero's Fiddle.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I have been writing since the age of ten and have self-published 20 titles. I am a native Georgian, currently working a full time job to support my writing habit. I am also staff to one feline named Clairee (although she does answer to “Queen Clairee” as well). I enjoy writing, reading, watching movies and I’m a big fan of Once Upon A Time. I also make crafts and quilts.

Describe the plot of your new book in a few sentences.
On a hot June day in 2017, the United States is hit with an Electromangetic Pulse (EMP) attack. This wipes out everything electronic. Captain Beverly Mossberg is tasked with the assignment of making her way to Washingon, DC to assassinate the terrorist before he attacks any other countries. She finds herself responsible not only for her own survival but also for the survival of her two children and a stranger who throws her lot in with Captain Mossberg. Once she finally arrives in DC she finds she has been misled – again. But this time, she has the weight of saving the world on her shoulders.

Who do you think would most appreciate this book? 

People who enjoy action, family drama, apocalyptic scenarios and survival of the human race stories. Women in the military, anyone who enjoys female protagonists, conspiracy theorists, fans of James Rollins’s Sigma Force novels, and those who like to be left with a little hope at the end of it all.

What inspired you to write a novel set in the United States after a disabling attack by an Electromagnetic Pulse?

I listened to the audiobook One Second After by William Forschten. I was fascinated by the electromagnetic pulse technology and did some research. I was surprised, and a little scared, to learn this technology is real and available. The more I listened to the book, the more I began to visualize my own concept of an EMP attack. My version has women heroes.

Captain Beverly Mossberg is tasked with getting to D.C. despite the chaos. Tell us a bit about this character.

Captain Beverly Mossberg, aka Cap’n Mossy, is a former Marine sniper. There has never been a woman sniper in the history of the military until I created one. She suffers from PTSD after a life-altering incident during Desert Storm. She’s very stoic, especially when it comes to her two children, Michael and Jaz.

Have you ever had writer's block? If yes, how'd you deal with it? If you have not had writer's block, why do you think you haven't?
I have never had writer’s block. That’s because there is an endless supply of material about which to write. I actually have 21 novels in my queue waiting to be written. My biggest problem is there is never enough time to write.

What do you have in mind for your next project?
My next project is the survival of the human race on another planet. The female protagonist, Niva, must stop the destruction of the planet while battling the indigenous species. At the moment, it will be a five part series.

Is there anything else you'd like potential readers to know about your book?
I am a huge James Rollins fan and can’t get enough of his Sigma Force series. I especially like the way he time stamps the action. His writing influenced me to do a “daily count” in Nero’s Fiddle because Captain Mossberg has 30 days before the next EMP is launched to complete her assignment. 

A short excerpt from Nero's Fiddle:
As Bev walked to the edge of the rooftop and gazed down at the bear, Sedona slowly, carefully, pulled herself to an upright sitting position. She intentionally put her back to the dead body.
Michael and Jaz walked around to her line of vision.
“You okay, Arizona?” Michael asked. The poor kid’s face was grimaced with worry.
She gave him a wan smile. “I’ll be okay.”
“You look a little, um,” Jaz searched for the right word, “gray. I would say you look a little green around the gills, but it’s hard to tell.” She took off her backpack and unzipped it.
Sedona chuckled then stopped as this unsettled her queasy stomach. “Was that a joke?”
“More like an attempt at one.” She removed a bottle of water and held it out for Sedona. “This is rainwater. A little cleaner than the stream water.”
She accepted the bottle and gave the girl a sincere smile. “Thanks, Jaz.”
“You’re welcome.” She looked as though she wanted to say more but she didn’t.
And Sedona didn’t press. She knew there would come a time when the girl might want to continue their discussion in more detail but certainly not within earshot of her mother. She opened the bottle and took a tentative sip of water. She waited to make sure it stayed down before taking another.
“Well,” Bev said rejoining them. “That is one determined bear.”
“One hungry bear,” Sedona amended. “What do we do now? Just wait it out?”
Bev shrugged. “What choice do we have?”
“Good point,” she agreed morosely and took another sip of water.
Bev removed her backpack and walked toward the other end of the roof away from the body. “I know what I’m gonna do.”
“What?” Michael asked following her.
“I am going to try out the blanket I salvaged from Wally world yesterday and take a nap.”
Sedona watched as Bev opened her backpack and removed the blanket which she spread out on the rooftop. She tossed her backpack at the top of blanket. “Are you serious?” she asked with some dismay. “How can you possibly sleep with,” she glanced behind her only long enough to confirm the body was still where it laid, “a dead body only a few feet away?”
“Easy,” she grunted as she lay upon the blanket. She laid her head atop the backpack removing the baseball cap on her head in the process. Just before placing the cap over her face to block out the sun, she looked playfully at Sedona. “The dead body won’t try to eat me.”
More Information
Buy the book on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1wCglK1
Nero’s Fiddle website (contains character interviews and more): http://bit.ly/1yYsNH2
Author's website: www.penspen.info

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