Welcome to my stop on The Three Thorns Blog Tour!
Enter the giveaway and then scroll on down to see my interview with the author!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Winner will be drawn March 27, 2015
· Five (5) winners will receive a digital copy of The Three Thorns (The Brotherhood and the Shield #1) by Michael Gibney (INT)
~About the Book~
Title: THE THREE THORNS (THE BROTHERHOOD AND THE SHIELD #1)
Publication date: February 24, 2015
Publisher: Tantrum Books/Month9Books, LLC.
Author: Michael Gibney
Three brothers born to a once powerful King were abandoned at birth and cast out into the old world as orphans - alone and unaware of the other's existence or their royal heritage.
In the new world, by order of the false King, three of the most lethal assassins are sent to kill the children before they come of age and avenge their father’s throne.
But when the brothers find one another, Benjamin, Tommy and Sebastian must resist the temptation of magic and power if they are to defeat the unspeakable evil that has threatened them since birth.
The Three Thorns is book one in an exciting children’s fantasy series called The Brotherhood and the Shield from debut author Michael Gibney.
~About the Author~
Michael Gibney began working in restaurants at the age of sixteen and assumed his first sous chef position at twenty-two. He ascended to executive sous chef at Tavern on the Green, where he managed an eighty-person staff. He has worked in the kitchens of Morgans Hotel Group, 10 Downing in Manhattan, and Governor in Brooklyn’s DUMBO, among many others. Over the course of his career, he has had the opportunity to work alongside cooks and chefs from many of the nation’s best restaurants, including Alinea, Per Se, Eleven Madison Park, Daniel, Jean Georges, Le Bernardin, Bouley, Ducasse, Corton, wd~50, and Momofuku.
In addition to his experience in the food service industry, Gibney also holds a BFA in painting from Pratt Institute and an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Connect with the Author: Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Hi Michael! Welcome to the blog. Can you tell us a little about your writing journey.
After I quit music in the early 00’s, I went back to the only subject I was ever good at in High School and my love of creative writing was re-birthed at the age of 24. Years before I had completed several screenplays and short stories that never left my dusty office. When I realized I got more fulfillment and purpose out of the written word than I did the musical note, I began pursuing it with a burning passion. I began writing The Three Thorns (Book 1 of the Brotherhood and the Shield series) in 2007 and haven’t stopped writing since. (I am up to book number 5 on that series and have 3 separate novels in production). I went through the literary agencies and sent off rough drafts of The Three Thorns to thousands of agencies across the globe and went through over three thousand rejections, mostly via email and post and a few via phone. I was eventually picked up by an Agency in Seattle, until I was unhappy with the lack of push they were giving The Three Thorns to publishers. I asked to get out of the contract with my first Agency and went back to square one before I set out seeking the right Agency for this series. I ended up with a total of 12 top CEOs in New York wanting to represent The Three Thorns including Peter Rubie of Fine Literary Management. But in the end I believe I found my ‘Brian Epstein’ in Liza Fleissig and Liza Royce Agency in New York. Through Liza, my novel was picked up and edited by Hunger Games editor Jennifer Rees and the first two novels of the series were bought by GMMG Georgia McBride’s group and placed under the sister company of Month9Books, Tantrum. After much online distribution deals with the likes of Indigo and Amazon, The Three Thorns, my debut novel, is currently set for release on the 24th February, 2015, seven years after I wrote it. It has been a battle, but a battle worth fighting and has spawned three other books with another three on the way and has encouraged me to keep writing and pitching my future manuscripts to my faithful agents at LRA.
What do you enjoy most about being a writer?
I love the escapism. That’s what is the most rewarding about writing. It is like I am watching a movie in my head that no one else has and hasn’t been released yet. It’s a very personal journey and this escapism has helped save me from having nervous breakdowns and depression, something I have been prone to due to my overactive imagination and lack of physical and mental stimulation. I use writing and my imagination to stimulate my senses. I think I not only enjoy escaping within the worlds and characters my mind can create but I also need to.
What is the hardest aspect of being a writer?
Motivation. Procrastination. Keeping the faith when everyone feels that what you are doing is a waste of time. It is hard when you lose faith in your work to get behind a desk and use months of your time on something with no guarantee. It’s a gamble. You’re basically risking having a life for having a career. It’s scary and I find that just to get started is the hardest part. Once I am typing, I am off like a thresher shark swooping after its prey. But from sitting with the thoughts in your head and trying to take care of all the menial day to day of life to setting your fingers on a keyboard to work … it is in that grey area, that middle ground from a to b that I find the hardest, which is why I admire Stephen King and Michael West for battling through their procrastination.
How much research goes into your story?
For a fictional fantasy series liken to the Brotherhood and the Shield, plenty. Especially for the realism and real dates and times when the story goes through different dates in the world’s history. Greek Mythology and Celtic Folklore as well as research on forms of magic and real spell casting was also researched. Very little was made up outside the actual story, which is just another reason how The Three Thorns and its Brotherhood series differs from most books in its genre. The same vigorous research is covered and sought out when writing the other books in the series and my other novels separate to the Brotherhood series.
Writers are sometimes influenced by things that happen in their own lives. Are you?
Definitely. I think this is why The Three Thorns is very Irish in a sense, even though my characters are mixed. Maybe there's a little bit of Irish myth and folklore in there. You never know until you read. A lot of the first half of the book is inspired by my childhood growing up in a working class and war torn city like Belfast, Ireland in the 1980s.
What is the most surprising thing about writing/publishing you have learnt?
That hard work and dedication will and does pay off. I have learnt that not everyone in the industry are necessarily right about everything and critics are no exception in this case. I have learned to take everything with a pinch of salt and grow thick skin. I have also learnt that there are people in this industry who are genuine and who do have faith as well as business to offer and that these people tend to break the new and up and coming authors into the industry and will mould them into bestselling authors. I have learnt that there is hope with these rare people within the industry and it has increased my faith in publishing, that not all routes are necessarily the same and they don’t have to be. Regarding writing, the biggest and most important lesson I’ve learnt is to be yourself. Write what you want and don’t compromise to the point of selling your work short. If you write for yourself and finish a book or a piece of work that you love and you are proud of, then everything else beyond that is a bonus.
What are your top tips for writers.
My first tip for any writer is write what you know. Second is write what you are confident with. You must believe in it no matter what or else there is no point without having faith behind anything. Secondly, write what YOU want to write. Please yourself. Entertain and thrill yourself. If you can do that, chances are you’ll have written something entertaining or thrilling for your reader. If you focus too much on what is marketable and try and write for the critics, the publishers or the people, you will end up with a dog’s dinner of a manuscript and you can’t please everyone. But if you please yourself, you will have the faith behind it to take it all the way. Lastly, write like you’re in a movie theatre that you have all to yourself. The massive cinema screen is facing you. It’s white/blank. What movie do YOU want to see? Visualize that movie and start writing down what you see. That is how I write. I use my vivid imagination to its maximum capability.
Other than writing what else do you enjoy?
I love film-making, creating and writing music and I love to paint portraits and work with paint, stencils and led. Anything artistic and creative, I am interested in. Outside of that, I love travelling, experiencing new walks of life and different cultures, especially Japanese and Asian culture.
Who is your favorite author and why?
Stephen King, not only King of books by surname, King is an inspiration to any author out there just by productivity alone. His vigorous and relentless work ethic is what I admire most about him next to his incredible and genius imagination. I strive to be as productive as King is someday and I want to tackle and attempt multiple genres, not just Children’s Fantasy. I think being pigeon holed or sticking to a safe formula is stifling to me both as a writer and as an artist. This is another reason why King is my favorite author. He wasn’t afraid to tackle new genres once he was labeled a horror writer.
If you had a premonition you would be stranded on a desert island what 5 books would you take?
The Holy Bible, The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare, Lord Of The Rings, Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and Lord Of The Flies.
Five words that sum you up.
Perfectionist. Naïve. Generous. Ambitious. Flawed.
How can we learn more?
Great! Thanks so much for being on the blog~ Best of luck with The Three Thorns!