- a partnership with a passion for the extraordinary. They live life as if a new adventure is just around the corner and believe that magic is real.
Readers, thanks for checking out another Author Spotlight Interview. Let’s give a good, hearty welcome to this week’s guest!
Brendan and Lori O’Gara write in the fantasy, contemporary fiction, and nonfiction genres. They have published novels together and individually.
Brendan O’Gara has a passion for the extraordinary and lives life as if a new adventure is just around the corner. He has been an avid gamer since he was a child and continues to play D&D, Pathfinder, and other RPGs. His experiences gaming and passion for cooking gave him the inspiration to write a fantastical cookbook.
Lori O’Gara is a writer of contemporary fiction, fantasy, and real-life commentary. She is an advocate of human decency, and believes that magic is real and love is a gift from the Devine. Lori is happiest with her feet in the sugar-white sand on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. When not at the beach, writing or reading, she can be found wandering the stacks in her library, watching Doctor Who, or spending time with her family.
When not writing or reading, they can be found exploring a library, on quests in tabletop role-playing games, or spending time with their family. A large blended family that consists of six children, seven grandchildren, and one dog named Harley Quinn.
Brendan and Lori, thanks for agreeing to be here today. Most author spotlight 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?
Brendan says our Staffordshire terrier named Harley Quinn is the perfect pet. I love dogs, so I agree with my husband that our fur baby is the best pet. But, do fairies count as pets? I would so add a fairy pet to our family. I wouldn’t keep it in a cage though. Wouldn’t it be fun to have a fairy on your shoulder like people do with parrots?
I wouldn’t think a fully sentient being counts as a pet? It depends if the fairies you refer to are fully cognizant.
What do you write? And how did you get started?
Between the two of us, we currently have twelve books published. I have a contemporary fiction series titled, The Perdido Key Novels. Brendan wrote and published a fantasy-themed cookbook before themed cookbooks tied to fiction were cool called Gadlin O’Hale’s Fantastic Recipes: From the Seven Kingdoms taken from the greatest Pubs, Taverns, and Inns”.
After about a hundred readers saying, “The recipes are great but what happens to the characters?” Brendan asked me if I wanted to write a fantasy novel series with him. I agreed and that is where our fantasy books started. Our fantasy series is called The Necromancer’s Song the first book is titled The Travelers’ Song. We have three compendium books in the series as well, including a cookbook.
I also have a passion for what I call No B.S. Christianity. I have three books and an online publication about finding the truth in religion.
I’ve heard the struggle with cookbooks is that you have to taste test everything… multiple times. How delicious!
What do you like to read?
I read mostly contemporary fiction, sci-fi, and epic fantasy. I also like narrative memoirs by everyday people. Brendan is a self-confessed big fantasy nerd. He likes Neil Gaiman, Greig Beck, Robert, Aspirin, and Robert Jordan.
Classic authors and a great mix.
Name one commonly accepted piece of writing advice that doesn’t work for you
We have completely different writing styles that like magic come together for coauthored projects. I am a plotter, but I don’t use an outline. We both use a plot diagram that we created together. I tend to write the beginning, the end, and then the middle. Brendan writes each scene as the inspiration hits him and in that aspect, he is very much writing by the seat of his pants.
I know no two writers write the same, but I’m a little shocked at co-writing without more of an outline. I’m confused by a plot diagram that’s not an outline in a different form, but I’m glad it works for y’all.
Name one commonly accepted piece of writing advice that works for you
Write what you know.
If I am working on a nonfiction project, I am a research librarian, so I will research an idea apart to find inspiration. In our fiction, we have created characters based loosely on people we know or a composite of traits from several people. The old adage is true, it is easy to write from what you know. That changes depending on where you are in your own life story though.
Exploring the human condition is my favorite part of genre fiction, and we are all experts of our own experience.
Shameless Self-Promotion time!
The Traveler’s Song (Necromancer’s Song #1)
Life is the most powerful of all forces in the universe. It will survive any obliteration. Life on Earth, unforgiving and beautifully dangerous, is not the same as it was four thousand years ago. Technology-dependent humans lost control and as a result, almost destroyed themselves. In this age, knowledge is currency. Technology is magic. Evolution prevails.
A group of travelers on a mission for the Seven Kingdoms in search of the greatest food of the lands. They are spies searching out the remnants of technology for the self-proclaimed Emperor. Together they must face the evil that lurks in this world of unknown risks to find the good that remains.
This fantastical cookbook was written by an adventurer named Gadlin, a traveler and an adventurer. He and a company of friends have gone on a tour of the Seven Kingdoms in search of the greatest food of the lands for their Liege Lord. Gadlin made a copy of all his books and has dedicated them to his children.
These books encompass a wealth of knowledge about the world he lived in and about a myriad of different subjects as well as cooking. Throughout the book are statements of wisdom from the band of travelers that should not be taken lightly scattered among a collection of recipes gathered by explorers. Johan, Wandalor, Dar, Thalin, and Gadlin, came from different backgrounds, thrown together by fate and these are their stories.
The greatest scientific minds of the world have been wrong. There is and has always been more than one species, of human. Homo erectus, Homo habilis and Homo floresiensis are all extinct and evolved into Homo Sapiens or so we thought. Breezy Martan is proof that humans are still evolving. With silvery hair, alabaster skin, and violet eyes, she is fairytale perfect. When Breezy sees her reflection, all she sees is freakish ugliness.
Jack Duran lives a secret life. He is a successful artist, but no one knows his name except his agent. By remaining anonymous, Jack can paint and live his life his way. He doesn’t have to worry about anyone, including his ex-wife, wanting him solely for what he provides. Jack likes his solidarity existence.
All of that changes when Jack meets Breezy, the most beautiful creature on the planet, a creature on the run. To save her, Jack will have to leave the protection of anonymity. Will Jack save the elf girl from being destroyed in the name of genetic research?
A fast-paced look into the life of one of Thanatos Mooreclasian Magni’s recovered souls and a brief glimpse at the necromancer’s methods. Nicolas Maverick just wanted a few days away from his life.
He was anything but patient. He hated his job as an investment advisor. Every day he was confronted with people who did not plan for their futures and expected him to work miracles with the meager savings they had accumulated. Often he failed. The Relaxation Law that forced the workaholics to take mandated time off gave Nicolas time away from his failures at his cabin on the lake.
On his first night, there is an unexpected knock on the door. A strange visitor shares a cup of coffee with him and changes the trajectory of his life. Nicolas passes down to his son, Steven, not only a worthless inheritance of that life but also a priceless lesson, trust no one with your uncertain future.