We promised you that there was going to be a part two to the already wonderful interview Scott gave us back in December 2013. He has been very busy and we wanted to make sure all the questions were answered so that you had a great sense of Scott's work as well as him as an author. If you missed Part 1 simply click here and it will take you to the section of my blog where part 1 of the interview is. So without further ado my interview with R. Scott Boyer - Part 2
8. As Bobby learns more about the Academy, he finds out all kinds of secrets. But he must harness his power to be able to uncover all of the secrets and answers he was looking for. Did Bobby have just enough power or were you thinking on giving him other powers?
I never wanted Bobby (or any other character for that matter) to have over-the-top 'superhero' -powers. They say that story is conflict, and a protagonist with too much power resolves conflict too easily (i.e. Superman without kryptonite). For tha treason, I always envisioned Bobby having just enough power to get him through what ever situation he faces, but also wanted his abilities to be transient, so that he would struggle again during the next crisis.
Don’t get me wrong, I always wanted him to have tremendous potential, I simply also want him to struggle to grasp it. That’s because the true story is about the journey – his development and maturation. No matter how powerful Bobby eventually becomes, he must always be faced with challenges that force him to grow.
9. I liked the tug of war over the scrolls between the Monks and The Academy. Was that something that you thought of right away or later on in the book?
That particular storyline surfaced gradually during the first draft and developed in more detail during subsequent rewrites. As discussed in regards to Master Jong in the first half of this interview, I quickly realized that Bobby needed an advocate inside the Academy. Obviously the Headmistress and her cronies weren’t going to help him.
This led me to develop MJ’s character more than I had up to that point. In doing so, I discovered his inner conflict and realized that he was a leader, an inspiration to his fellow monks, and a catalyst for change. It took quite a bit longer to uncover all the subplots, especially as they pertained to elements like the sacred scrolls and Divine Master Whimpley. How to manifest a character’s personality, goals, and aspirations into tangible action is often one
of th emost difficult aspects of writing.
10. I loved how you worked Bobby's grandfather in. Was that also a plan from the beginning? Because if you read the book, his grandfather played quite a pivotal role in what Bobby found out and what actions he took based on his grandfather's knowledge.
Yes, the roll that Jeremiah (Grandpa) plays in the book was something that I planned right from the start. As a matter of fact, it’s one of the main subplots that prompted me to write the book in the first place.
Remember, I wanted this book to blend elements of fantasy with new-age fiction. A surprise twist in the family dynamic (usually involving a orphan child with a noble birthright) is a major archetype in traditional fantasy. However, I knew right away that I didn’t want Bobby to be an orphan, at least not at the start (spoilers!). I realized that angle would be cliché, and felt the need to come up with something different. When I thought up the dynamic involving Grandpa, I knew I had something interesting. That’s when I really started writing.
11. As the story line shifts and enemies become friends, friends become enemies, and you do not know who to trust, explain how you wrapped it all up as well as you did.
It was actually relatively simple to wrap up, mainly because I had the ending planned from very early on in the writing process. Obviously, there are some intended surprises for the reader, but I knew all along who was truly an enemy and who was truly a friend. The key was to write all the scenes prior to the ending in such a way as to hopefully surprise (or at least entertain) the reader right up until the last possible moment. Hopefully I met that goal, but I will
let you and your readers judge for yourselves.
12. Where is your favorite place to write? (in a chair, in front of a desk, in bed)?
I’m going to cheat a little here and tweak your question about ‘writing’ in favor of a question that also includes my favorite place to create. After all, you can’t write until you first know what it is you want to write, and, for me, those two things frequently happen in far different places.
Biking/hiking with my dog, as well as driving to/from my mother’s vacation house in the desert is where a lot of my creativity happens. There is something about the quiet calm – long stretches where I can really get into the Pool with my characters and share in their lives, that helps me figure out where the story is headed next. I also love the jacuzzi or this great swing in the backyard in the desert, but honestly, any place quiet and calm will do.
That said, I do most of my actual writing at my desk in my living room. I tend to write at night, and occasionally send myself emails if I’m in bed or on the hillside with Patch and don’t have access to my computer. When I come home, I copy and paste the email into my story and then edit it.
13. What do you do to relax in between writing?
Ironically, most of the things I do to relax are the same things I do to help me create. Spending time with my dog, Patch, is definitely number one on that list. We take hikes, bike rides, walks, etc., all of which helps me relax and clear my mind. For shorter breaks without leaving the apartment, I get down on the carpet and wrestle with him.
Snacks/meals are another big way I unwind. I often turn on the television while I eat and allow myself to get sucked into a show or two. I’m big into NCIS right now and use episodes as breaks/rewards for hitting certain writing goals.
14. What can we expect from you in the future? What do your fans have to look forward
The main thing you can look forward to from me is more in the Bobby Ether series. Having finished the first story, I found that Bobby and his friends had a lot more to share. I have already completed the second book in the series and am hard at work on number three.
The second book, Bobby Ether and the Temple of Eternity, takes place mainly in Guatemala and centers around the legendary Fountain of Youth. While writing book two, I discovered that the location helped create the plot, pushing Bobby and his friends to continue their metaphysical and spiritual journeys. The book involves a prophecy that Bobby and Jinx must fulfill in order to free ancient spirits trapped inside the temple, as well the continuation of the story line involving the Core.
Though currently unpublished, I plan to query agents soon. Meanwhile, I am hard at work on book number three, which explores the mysterious origins of the Great Sphinx in Egypt, as well as new metaphysical territory for me in the form of past-lives and reincarnation.
15. Do you have anything else would you like to add?
Also, as I mentioned in part one of this interview, I am happy to share a free digital copy of the book with anyone who can’t afford to buy it. Just have them send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org stating that they heard about the offer from your blog and letting me know what file type they want (epub, mobi, pdf).
Thanks again for interviewing me and for letting me talk about Bobby’s adventures with your readers.
Scott I had a wonderful time having you here and I also appreciate our friendship so much as well. I am always more than happy to always spread the word about Bobby because I think Bobby is such an incredible series (so far. I am halfway through book two. And, if possible, it is even better than book one!). I hope to see a lot more from you. I am excited about book three and I wish you the best of success and many blessings.