Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Interview with Author Carrie F. Shepherd

Today we're talking with Carrie F. Shepherd, author of Ashes to Ashes: The Scribing of Ishitar, Volume 2

FQ: We’ll begin with the fact that, I would assume, you already know: How much I love this series. What on earth made you come up with these characters? Are you a research maven who is very into religious history who likes to then expand on theories? Or, simply a person who is trying to put across the point that the war between good and evil still exists?


Author Carrie F. Shepherd


SHEPHERD: Thank you so much for talking with me today. I really appreciate your time and I’m very happy to hear that you enjoyed my new book.

I’ve always been fascinated with mythology and religion. As I allowed myself to research each of the different theologies I came to the conclusion that every religion shares the same basic principles. I would read stories from the bible that mirrored stories from the Greeks, Romans and Egyptians. Then, in my mid twenties, I started studying the angels. Specifically, I found Azrael extremely appealing as a concept character. What must it be like to see, hear, feel and know every joy and every pain that every individual in all worlds and times is experiencing and to do so all at once and in a single moment?

The Author and daughter Riyan at Banff National Park in Canada
FQ: What do you feel is your favorite genre - not only to read but to write? In addition, when it comes to series fiction, how do you feel about less intricate/interesting characters becoming so popular?

SHEPHERD: I love a good mystery. Anything that keeps the reader guessing and turning the page to find out what happens next. As for series fiction and its characters, every reader has their own genre and preference. I think for most people, reading is a means to escape into another world. Any author that can achieve that end goal for their reader deserves credit for their writing in my mind.

Daughter Riyan

FQ: Do you base any of your characters on people that are real; family members, friends, etc. I ask because I’m sure many fans of Ishitar wonder if he is perhaps a character that’s based in reality?

SHEPHERD: All of my characters are most definitely based on the people in my life who have influenced me, both positively and negatively, including Ishitar. I’ve been fortunate enough in my life to have met a broad range of people and each and every one of them have touched me enough in some way to become part of Ishitar’s story.

FQ: Readers always wonder what the author’s perspective is on issues such as Ebook publishing taking over the traditional paperback world. Do you believe the rise of Ebooks helps or hurts the author out there who has such a compelling subject but is perhaps pushed aside by traditional houses?

SHEPHERD: I’m an old fashioned reader, so my response to this question is influenced by that. I like the feel of a heavy book in my hands. At the same time, I understand the draw to e-books. As to whether it helps or hurts an author, that’s a tough question to answer. You have the opportunity of getting your work to a broader range of readers because, clearly, you can’t sell a digital copy for the same price as a paperback. Then again, as you say, the competition of being noticed and read can mitigate any advantage that may be present by being available in digital format. Still, as a reader, I’d rather spend a little more and have the physical book than a tablet, nook or kindle.

FQ: Do you believe that angels/religion is on the rise in fiction now that the vampires seem to have run their course?

That’s an interesting question. And I’m not certain of the answer. Every generation seems to pick its own theme and jump on board for the ride. Not so long ago it was Harry Potter and every other band of witch or wizard that captivated the readers’ imagination. I think people, right now, are just looking for something fresh and new. And that’s a more difficult task to achieve than I think people realize. I started writing Ishtar’s story over twenty years ago, not knowing that, some day, he would find his place and time. Then again, I supposed Milton’s fans would have gobbled this series up!

Author Carrie F. Shepherd


FQ: No spoilers, of course, but is Book 3 going to be the finale of this series, or will there be more to come?

SHEPHERD: Book three will not be the end. I’m not sure how many more installments there will be, at this juncture, but there is still a lot to resolve before we see who, ultimately, wins Noliminan’s crown!

To learn more about Ashes to Ashes: The Scribing of Ishitar, Volume 2 please read the review at: Feathered Quill Book Reviews.