Friday, March 4, 2011
Book Spotlight and Interview: Ultimate Duty by Marva Dasef
Read an excerpt!
With the protective helmet off, they could now talk. Remy pulled down the rebreather mask. “You guys ready to get the hell off this planet?”
Her mom patted her on the shoulder and her muffled voice answered, “More than ready, sweetheart.”
“Well, hang on. This is definitely going to be a bumpy ride.” Remy replaced her rebreather over her face. Once they got moving, the shuttle’s environment equipment would kick in, and they could take off the masks.
Remy clicked on the communicator and tuned to a close-range channel. She set her infopad near the spare headset and switched it to an electroid number. She could hardly call it music since the robotic instruments reprogrammed themselves at random, making a weird variety of sounds. Remy shrugged. “I guess I just don’t get modern music.” Bill and Ted were monitoring the frequency though and would know that Remy was ready to take off. They’d come in for another diversion run so that she could escape the planet unnoticed. Anybody else who picked up the sound would, hopefully, ignore it.
Her father looked out the passenger side screen and tapped Remy’s arm. “Would three guys holding blasters running in this direction be of interest?”
Remy nodded and goosed the shuttle’s back jets to get them moving across the bleak landscape and into the sky. She boosted out of atmosphere so hard her mom suppressed a squeak. “Slow down!”
“Can’t, Mom. Just try to hang on.” Her mother nodded, her eyes wide with fear. Her dad, on the other hand, was grinning like a kid with a new toy. Remy thought he might not be too old to take pilot training.
PURCHASE ULTIMATE DUTY AT ETERNAL PRESS! THIS BOOK IS ALSO AVAILABLE AT AMAZON AND IN A KINDLE EDITION!
(Q) Thank you for joining us today. Why don't you tell everyone a bit about your book?
(A) ULTIMATE DUTY is space opera with a bit of romance. From the cover:
Remy Belieux, a woman born into a life of servitude on a repressive factory planet, is desperate for a different life. When she's accepted into the Space Service Academy, run by the organization that enslaves her planet, she discovers the truth behind generations of rebellion. Now, she must decide what to believe, where her ultimate duty lies, and fight for more than her life against impossible odds.
(Q) Where did the concept for the book come about?
(A) I wrote a short story titled "Pressure Drill" years ago. I got a good response from my critique group, but back then, submitting was entirely by snail mail. I didn't pursue publication. When I retired from real work, I hauled out the story, along with a few others and gave them a fresh look and rewrite. That first story, plus one more with the same main character were published. From that I expanded the story and it eventually became a novel.
(Q) How long did it take you to finish, from concept to final product?
(A) Only thirty years in the making, but I was busy doing other things most of those years.
(Q) Are there any authors that have influenced your own writing?
Mark Twain, Robert Heinlein, Isaac Asimov. Plain, simple stories well told.
(Q) Do you have any favourite place where you feel your Muse is more apt to come and play while you write? Or perhaps you listen to music? If so, what do you listen to?
(A) I always write at home. I have a great setup in the family room, right next to the kitchen for quick snacking. I'm one of the few non-listeners. When I write, I find any music distracting. I've become used to the sound of the dishwasher, hubs running power equipment, and my cat vocally worrying about what's going on outside.
(Q) As a writer, what is your greatest fear?
That I actually suck, and I'm wasting my time.
(Q) What normally occupies your desk while writing?
(A) A stack of scratch paper, two pens, a ruler, a calendar, a calculator, my cell phone, stack files...Okay, this is boring. Just the usual desk stuff.
(Q) Do you have any new projects that you are working on? If so, what are they?
(A) Mostly, I'm wrapping up a lot of projects. I have a mystery/suspense, "Missing, Assumed Dead," coming out in July 2011 from MuseItUp, a tween fantasy titled "Bad Spelling" scheduled for October 2011. I'm also waiting on a response from MuseItUp to the two sequels of "Bad Spelling." I sure hope they take the whole series. Having books 2 and 3 without a publisher is worrisome. I'm in the note-taking stage of a sequel to Ultimate Duty.
(Q) What tip would you offer to a new writer who is just beginning their submission journey?
(A) Get your web presence set up RIGHT AWAY. Start with a blog, but I strongly encourage you to snag a website with your name as soon as possible. Get on Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter, but don't make enemies by expressing strong political or religious views. If you want to do that, use a pseudonym. You want to be prepared to jump out of the gate running when you sell your work.
I spent a twenty-five year dryspell without writing fiction. Since I wrote technical documentation for a living, I could hardly face a computer after work. But I'm sorry that I let it go for so long. Don't wait to write!
(Q) Please tell our readers where they can find you.
(A) All over creation and beyond.
My website: http://marvadasef.com/
My blog: http://mgddasef.blogspot.com/
I'm a member of SCBWI and maintain pages on Facebook, Twitter, Jacketflap, MySpace, and a variety pack of writerly websites.
Marva Dasef is a writer living in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and a fat white cat. Retired from thirty-five years in the software industry, she has now turned her energies to writing fiction and finds it a much more satisfying occupation. Marva has published more than thirty-five stories in a number of on-line and print magazines, with her stories included in several Best of anthologies. She has five published books. See a complete list of her work at http://marvadasef.com.