Welcome to another installment of my author interviews! Today we’ll be getting to know the Enthralling Éric Desmarais. Enjoy!
Bio – Éric Desmarais
Éric Desmarais has had an eclectic career which ranges from casino dealer to canal boat captain to radio station DJ. Since 2009, he works as a layout artist and desktop publisher for the federal government. During his off time, he works as a freelance layout artist for various Canadian-based authors and publishers, roasts gourmet flavoured coffee, runs several pen-and-paper role-playing games, writes, and helps run JenEric-Designs.ca (home of the TravellingTARDIS.com). He writes a monthly serial story on his blog along with rants and more stories.
Lives in Ottawa, Ontario with his wife and daughter.
Visit Éric Desmarais at www.EricDesmarais.ca.
What is your earliest memory of writing an original story?
When I was in fifth grade I was obsessed with Goosebumps, Fear Street, and Bruce Coville. I started writing a time travel story on lined paper in pencil. It was about a boy who was brought to a dystopian future by a travelling carnival. There was something about a special sword and pastel-coloured sky scrapers. I think I’d written two dozen pages before I got distracted. I found the pages in a brown envelope twenty years later; unfortunately the pencil had faded over time and it was completely illegible.
This is why I hate pencil! Maybe you’ll have to re-write it one day.
What writing advice would you give to your past self?
Write in pen.
Also I’d tell myself to not stop writing. Just because one teacher tells you you’re not good, doesn’t mean they’re right.
You tell your past self, Éric! Good for you!
What advice can you give aspiring authors?
Surround yourself with creative people. Can-Con is an excellent place to start.
Talent is a myth. If you write a lot, read a lot, and learn from those around you, you can become a great writer.
Don’t listen to anyone who tells you you’re not good enough, especially yourself.
Everyone can write, but there will always be different levels of expertise and styles. You’ll never write like anyone else. Accept that, and you’ll be golden.
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
There were three times in my life I decided to be a writer. When I was in fifth grade writing that story. In high school, I helped found the bilingual newspaper and even with a monthly edition I needed to add some small stories myself. I was convinced I should be a writer until my creative writing teacher told me I didn’t have any talent.
Last was when I did NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) for the first time in 2008. I’m still convinced it’s what I want to do.
In my opinion, no one is born with talent. Some people just may find it easier to take up a certain craft. Babies are not talented writers, they know nothing! You’ll only improve with practice.
What authors inspire you?
Bruce Coville, Neil Gaiman, and Ray Bradbury inspired my childhood; Tamora Pierce, J.K. Rowling, and Jim Butcher inspired my twenties; and Seanan McGuire, Laura Resnick, and S. M. Carrière are inspiring me now.
The unique, diverse, and wonderful authors of Renaissance Press inspire me both with their writing and their overall awesomeness.
What genre do you write and read in?
If you can’t guess from the previous question, I read mostly fantasy, urban fantasy, science fiction, horror, mystery, and young adult.
I describe my writing as adventure, mostly in fantasy, science fiction, and young adult. That being said, my first novel A Study in Aether is a YA, Mystery, Fantasy.
My second novel Parasomnia, that just came out on September 3rd, is a Paranormal, Thriller, Fantasy.
What type of person is your main character (on average)?
My main characters are almost always do-gooders that attract trouble. They want to do the right thing, even if they don’t know what it is. I like characters that are intelligent, driven, and a little flawed. They also tend to quote or reference pop culture a lot.
What character, that you created, would you want to be your best friend?
In Parasomnia, there is a character who is an imaginary friend. She’s a cat girl called Kitty, or Katherine, and she’s everything you’d want in a best friend. She’s supportive, energetic, mischievous, and adventurous.
So… the total opposite of an actual cat which are not supportive whatsoever?
Quick! Write a paragraph with this prompt: “the darkness rose through the sky.”
The darkness rose through the sky, her wings shimmered in the moonlight. The opalescent glint was the only hint that she followed them. There was no way they would see her, she thought, and if they did, she was just a crow.
“Is it strange to you that a giant crow is following us?” the small boy asked his captors.
“Shut up. Your father didn’t hire us to tell you bedtime stories.”
The young boy shrugged and continued to watch the beautiful bird out of the corner of his eye. After a few more hours tied to the back of the wagon, he was truly getting bored, and if he was honest with himself, scared.
You’d talk to me if you could, wouldn’t you, crow? He thought.
To his surprise the crow responded, Of course I would, my Prince.
Who is a part of your core writing team?
The most important part of my writing team is my wife, she’s my alpha reader (or Weditor as I like to call her) and usually the first person to see anything I write.
There’s also my writer’s group the Inkonceivables, and last but not least, a small but awesome group of beta readers.
What project are you currently working on?
I’m currently editing a book I called Everdome. It’s a fantasy book about a group of people who decide to go onto a fantasy themed reality show that turns out to be real.
I’m currently writing the fourth book in the Baker City Mysteries. The first was A Study in Aether which was published last year and the second is The Sign of Faust which will be published next year. The one I’m writing now is called The Mystery of the Dancing Lights and has Elizabeth and her friends at a sleepaway camp where mysterious lights are abducting campers.
Final Thoughts from Éric Desmarais
Thank you for this opportunity and I hope I didn’t bore your readers too much.
You could never bore us, Éric! Thank you so much for wanting to be part of this adventure. Good luck with your future books and in your career (which is indeed very eclectic).
Thank you so much for reading this! Tune in next Friday and see what else I have in store.
If you have any ideas on what I should write about in my next post, head to the contact page. I’d love to hear from you.
STRENGTH FROM WITHIN, MY DEBUT NOVEL, IS AVAILABLE NOW IN KINDLE STORES AROUND THE WORLD.
Here’s a couple links to help you find it:
Strength From Within (Canadian Amazon Site)
Strength From Within (American Amazon Site)
If you need help finding it for your country, let me know and I might have a link. Thanks so much! See you next time 🙂
Photo Cred: Stock Snap