- an emerging Portuguese SciFi writer
Readers, let’s give a good, hearty welcome to this week’s guest!
Living and working in Lisbon, Portugal, Bruno Martins Soares’s latest work is the post-apocalyptic Laura and the Shadow King – portraying a little girl’s flight across a devastated Southern Europe.
He is better known for his gritty and emotional militaristic style in, among other titles, the award-winning Dark Sea War Chronicles.
Bruno, thanks for agreeing to be here today. Most interviews start off with the boring stuff, but I know what readers REALLY want to know.
If you could have any pet (real/fantasy/no-allergies/no worries about feeding it) what would it be?
I’m actually pretty in love with my two annoying ginger cats. They’re basically a subspecies of demons estranged from the Evil Lord, but I love them anyway.
If I could choose, I probably would want a dragon, but I don’t have space to put it or money to settle any legal suits for the damages. Still, it would be pretty cool.
I totally get that. My kitty’s gotten under my skin too, and not just cause he loves to gnaw on me. But, I totally agree with dragons, pending any sort of legal issues.
What do you write? And how did you get started?
I write mostly SciFi/F.
I got started a long time ago when I was in my teens – writing all kinds of stupid stories. But I got addicted to it and it became as necessary as breathing or eating. I wrote a lot of short stories, which was a way to learn the skills I needed. Then, I won a major national contest in Portugal, where I live and work, and represented my country in events in Portugal, Italy and Bosnia.
I took a plunge and tried my luck in novels. It didn’t go well for a while and my first few will forever burn in the dark pit of oblivion. I went to write some stuff for movies and TV, until one day I decided to write a strange novel I was actually working on for 20 years. I had it in my head and had fun with it, but never quite gave it value. Still, I wrote it, The Saga of Alex 9, and submitted it to a publisher and soon I was being published
next to George R.R. Martin and Bernard Cornwell.
Since then, I published an award-winning trilogy, The Dark Sea War Chronicles, and the first volume of the post-apocalyptic series Laura and the Shadow King – the second volume will come out until the end of the year.
Those are some of my favorites! I love it when I meet characters in my head that I end up loving.
What do you like to read?
I like to read a lot of different stuff, but lately, besides non-fiction books, I’ve been reading historical novels and SciFi/F.
Right now, I’m reading another volume of ‘The Witcher’, by Sapkowski, and enjoying it immensely. I like stories with unexpected twists and Sapkowski knows how to do that.
You’re far from the only one to enjoy his storytelling, of late!
Name one commonly accepted piece of writing advice that doesn’t work for you.
Write every day
I try and I write most days, certainly. But if I write four or five days in a row, I have to stop, or my writing gets dry and boring and rushed. I prefer to stop for a couple of days, think about the scenes I will be writing next, savor them, refine the ideas, and then go back to my writing.
I often find that to be true for me as well. I’ve talked to people who can write tens of thousands of words in a single weekend. For me, after a few thousand words, I need to step away and process, let my mind wander, and follow the threads and connections I’ve set up to see how they lead to the next part.
Name one commonly accepted piece of writing advice that they can pry out of your cold, dead hands.
Structure, structure, structure.
I don’t always right down my structures or make maps or anything, but I’m deeply aware of the structure as I go along. I’m always analyzing and testing my writings against the rules of structure, and I plot and plot and plot. I love when plotlines and storylines come together, and I love subtle foreshadowing, and devising twists, and
having characters surprise the reader.
Structuring helps us avoid many of the traps and dead ends our stories can step into. It lets us focus on the writing itself when we get to the page and, since I learned that, my writing has grown immensely.
Many writers know structure more instinctively, or like to experiment with it. For me, I use it notionally for my rough draft, and then look into it hard during my first round of revisions. After all, no one knows what order you wrote your story.
Shameless Self-Promotion time!
Humanity is dying. Much of the population is living in the wild like psychotic animals ravaged by a seemingly incurable disease. J.J. Berger and his Shadow Team are the defenders of the last remnants of Democracy, threatened by the sick and by the totalitarian forces in the East, wondering if theirs is a lost cause. On the Iberian southern plains, a flicker of hope sparks up, as a little girl and her mother flee their brutal captors towards the dim beacon of civilization still burning in the West.
With this new series, Bruno Martins Soares ventures into a post-apocalyptic world, where his action-filled breathtaking militaristic style rises to a different level, on the southern plains of Spain and Portugal.
While trying to stop an invading army of the East, Berger and his Special Forces operatives will battle organized
gangs, hordes of the sick and mysterious suicidal terrorists. But maybe little Laura and her mother bring the
answers and hope they have been longing for.
As Laura and the King take refuge in the medieval castle of Monsaraz, a major battle will ensue, as the eastern
forces chase one little girl and her powers. Outnumbered and outgunned, the siege will demand everything the
Shadow Team can muster to meet the challenge.
In a distant solar system, a war breaks between the Webbur Union, its ally the Kingdom of Torrance, and their rival, the Axx Republic. Byllard Iddo is a young man who accidentally killed his father in a martial arts training session. He left to join the Space Navy.
Fighting the Silent – Volume 1
When you see them… is too late.
Now a lieutenant in the powerful Webbur Navy, Byl will serve in different ships and face danger as the war grows in violence. Refusing to disappoint his new family, the Navy, he embarks in a desperate mission to diminish a ruthless threat: the invisible Silent Boats that prey on the convoys that cross the void Dark Sea space between Webbur and Torrance.
He is sure of only one thing: many will die in the battles ahead and he will do whatever it takes to bring the war
closer to an end. As he walks this path, through tales of love, pain and sacrifice, he becomes the youngest and most decorated Captain in Webbur Space Navy’s history.
Mission in the Dark – Volume 2
One ship alone… in the dark… with fangs.
As the Dark Sea War intensifies, Iddo takes command of the modified sloop-of-war Arrabat in a dangerous covert mission to cripple the operations of the illusive Silent Boats. Surviving or not, Byl and his elite crew are determined to change the face of the war.
Shark-Killer – Volume 3
A Hero becomes a Legend.
As the daring mission of the sloop-of-war Arrabat comes to a breathtaking close, Iddo and his companions will play a surprisingly important role in the fate of the Dark Sea War. Iddo will have to rise to his full potential to pull them through, as intense battles in deep Space threaten to destroy them all.
And check out his other books and short stories on Amazon.