PODCAST: Author Interviews with M.J. Struven
It's been far too long since I've posted to my blog, as life became incredibly demanding of my time over the latter half of 2022. Not in a bad way—just in a "ain't nobody got time for that" kind of way. Things haven't really slowed, but I'm making an effort to improve at balancing the many aspects of my life. Between running several businesses with my wife, homeschooling two children, being active in club soccer and baseball, producing, recording, and releasing new music, and still trying to get words in on my work in progress, blog posts have subsequently been sent to the back burner. Life's surge of demands however, comes in waves, and I have no doubt that I will be back at it more regularly in good time.
For now, I had to share that I recently had the honor and the pleasure of appearing on M.J. Struven's Author Interviews Podcast. I really enjoyed my conversation with Matt, and I hope you will as well! I've copied the transcript below, just in case. Please note, that this transcript came straight from YouTube, so it may or may not be accurate—I've not proofread it on account of the aforementioned "ain't nobody got time for that" problem.
Oh yeah—one more thing... In this episode, Matt made a joke saying I don't want anyone to call me P.S. and I just want to clarify that this was only a joke, as I know many of you have addressed me P.S. in the past. I don't mind being addressed as P.S. at all. You are welcome to call me Patrick, Pat, P.S., or whatever you feel comfortable with. I am not particular about that in the least, so go on, do your thang. Okay, enjoy!
All right everybody thank you for joining us today um bear with me I'm not sure if you can 0:06 tell I have a slight grasp in my throat I'm getting over a little bit of sickness um though I will say my my wife she said 0:13 that it sounded super sexy and I was afraid to ask her what she thinks of my normal voice 0:19 um but nonetheless we'll get through this together and uh we'll have a good interview here with Mr let me do a 0:25 little introduction here for you [Music] 0:30 P.S Patton or as we were discussing just before this uh he likes to go by Patrick 0:36 or Pat and one thing I did forget to ask so PS Patton does that have any sort of 0:41 reference to the PS that you have at the end of a letter maybe post script or is that literally just your initials so it 0:48 is literally my initials it's Patrick Stephen Patton, Jr but uh yeah when I was 0:53 looking for a pen name there's a bunch of Patrick Pattons and Pat Pattons everywhere it's in fact 0:59 there's there's three in my town that I know of I used to play in a worship band with another Pat Patton that's not related to 1:04 me my dad's Pat Patton so all those websites and handles are taken so I was looking for a pen name and you know a 1:12 lot of authors do their first two initials and it just so happened that mine also happens to be a literary term 1:18 so I thought it worked got a little lucky on that one yeah and then also just 1:23 before this we were talking about it um he doesn't want anybody to ever call him PS in real life and if anybody ever 1:28 sees me in real life please don't call me because I will not know who you're talking about I will probably not turn 1:33 around and if you come up to me and call me MJ I'll probably think you're a stalker so don't do that 1:39 um nonetheless let's go ahead and hear a little bit about you who are you 1:45 sure so uh I'm uh I don't know my name is Patrick I was 1:51 created by God to uh walk this Earth and uh find a wife and produce two children 1:59 and I also do some other random things in the meantime while I'm here and one of those is write novels and 2:06 um I got one so far so I guess I write novel but um yeah I play music uh my wife and I for 2:14 most of our well most of my teens and 20s uh we just toured the country and 2:20 toured regionally and recorded music and uh that was kind of my first love but it 2:27 wasn't a good place to raise kids so once we ended up having kids we said yeah let's get normal jobs and be normal 2:33 people and raise them into normal uh you know and it can be done I'm sure but it 2:38 wasn't feasible for us so we moved on to other things and I ended up finding that 2:44 I really enjoy writing stories um and I mean songwriting really is 2:50 writing stories so it really wasn't that big of a transition it was just a um kind of a 2:56 doing a little research and finding out how to write something that's way way longer than a song so 3:03 okay awesome so I will admit I did do a slight bit of stalking on you Google 3:08 does wonders and you weren't that hard to find even with your super common name um so I think I think you live in 3:14 Templeton you said right that's right yes no I found seven thousand people yeah I actually grew up in Santa Barbara 3:20 a little south of you and I'm familiar with templeton's location because you always pass through it when you go to 3:25 Lake nacimiento so oh yeah other than that I'm actually top there but I'm actually from Paso where Lake Nazi is 3:33 but um but yeah we just moved to Templeton a couple years ago but I went 3:38 to Paso high so did my wife so we're we're from there okay awesome and so I'll put a link to this video I'm 3:44 discussing um in the description but he uh he went on to go and mention some of his 3:49 favorite authors and I loved your favorite authors list but for the listeners can you just go ahead and 3:55 start rattling off some of those names sure I mean I'd have to put 4:00 um C.S Lewis at the top just because he's definitely been the most impactful the space Trilogy was so good I mean 4:08 that is kind of I always say that that my book The withering is like is 4:15 pearlandra meets Book of Eli and there's actually several reviews on on Amazon 4:21 and Goodreads that mention it seems like perilandra for a new generation which is exactly what I was going for so it makes 4:27 me feel really good to hear that so C.S Lewis for sure um I love Tolkien I loved um John 4:35 Steinbeck I even love some Stephen King um I kind of have a love hate relationship 4:42 with that I don't recommend The Dark Tower series to anybody because it really does get pretty dark and too dark 4:47 for me but that being said there's some brilliant um brilliant Pros in there I love his voice 4:54 as an author so I kind of have a love-hate thing with Stephen King um 4:59 and then who else Pat rothfuss is more recent where uh I I love his name of the 5:06 wind and um what the wise man's fear and then Brandon Sanderson has has got me 5:11 hooked I'm just devouring the cosme array now so 5:16 you know I have heard um Name of the Wind thrown around so many times I've never read it and almost 5:22 embarrassingly I've also never finished a Brandon Sanderson book and I know that's probably super terrible to hear 5:28 and I need to get around to it because he's one of the biggest names right now but I'm I'm a fan of some of the older 5:34 authors kind of that you mentioned like the Tolkien and the Lewis and so let's go back for a second and talk about the 5:39 space Trilogy because um sure bear with me again my voice is a little cracky 5:45 so for those of you that are unfamiliar with Lewis's space Trilogy um the first one is out of the Silent 5:51 Planet the second one is perilandra and the third one is That Hideous Strength and so 5:56 um Patrick here just referenced his his novel in um in comparison to perilandra which is 6:02 without ruining too much a another take on an Adam and Eve story where one of 6:08 the main characters gets to interact with Adam and Eve on this new planet and the devil 6:14 so tell me how your novel kind of um relates to that or does it relate to 6:19 other things than than what I just mentioned okay uh so 6:25 basically I read the space Trilogy in high school and I'm 36 so I mean that 6:31 was like 20 years ago I'm a little fuzzy on the actual specifics of what happens but 6:37 what I am not fuzzy on is how much it impacted me in my imagination 6:43 um the inspiration I found in like wow you can do that with words you know you 6:49 can you can find a high school kid in a small town who feels kind of alone 6:54 because I'm in California and you know that it's kind of the front lines out 7:00 here as far as the culture war and like uh Christianity in your faith and standing up and being vocal 7:07 um so you know there's a lot of times where you feel very alone as a man of 7:12 faith and so those books really meant something to me in that way 7:18 so I would say that the themes the message is what really carried over and 7:25 just really sticks with everything that I write um maybe not so much as the specifics uh 7:32 it's a very different type of setting it is on a different world the withering 7:37 um so it has that in common with at least the first two space trilogy books but 7:43 uh it it's kind of I mean I guess it's kind of like if you took a lot of the elements of the space 7:50 Trilogy a lot of elements of um Stephen King's Dark Tower but made it 7:56 clean and then if you took Book of Eli maybe maybe some Lord of the Rings I've heard 8:02 people on Amazon have been comparing it to uh a journey like Lord of the Rings 8:09 um and I can see that but it's not really that that close or epic definitely not that epic but anyways if 8:15 you took all of those things and then put them in a tumbler and shook them around and spit them all out again you 8:21 might get something close to the withering so it's uh it's got some of those elements and some of those themes 8:28 running through it but it's definitely looks different on the surface so you briefly alluded to some of these 8:34 themes in relation to your faith with your Works um what what would you say are some of 8:39 the strongest messages that you're trying to get across maybe your faith related messages and your books or book 8:45 rather um um you know I wouldn't even necessarily say that I'm trying to get a theme 8:50 across I think that they kind of Stephen King I read his on writing and um 8:58 you know the guy I don't agree with his approach to a lot of things or the way he uh vocalizes his opinions but he's 9:07 very insightful and he has a lot of wisdom as a writer and one of the things that he talked about was that theme and 9:14 Motif are kind of like Excavating bones like dinosaur bones um if you will and so 9:22 he talks about like you just keep you keep digging and you keep you'll find you'll find it eventually and then you 9:28 gotta really like brush it off and and find all those little details in it it becomes more and more clear as you go 9:34 and I am more of one of those writers I'm sure there's some people who can say like I want to make a story with this 9:41 theme and then plot it out and plan it but I'm a little bit more Discovery when it comes to those things but the thing 9:48 that I found um after trying very hard and failing many times is that if I 9:54 I just I just believe the way I believe it I see the world the way I see it so no matter what I write it's going to 10:01 come out um you know in the end there is going to be a theme that is 10:07 consistent with what I actually believe because I'm just I I probably couldn't write something 10:13 that was contrary if I tried you know it's it's it's just who I am so I'm gonna write the truth and um it's going 10:21 to come out and you know it might be exploring something I didn't really like an aspect of it that I didn't think about and I find out a lot about what I 10:29 believe when I'm writing but it's going to come out consistent 10:34 with my core values of beliefs you are a science fiction and fantasy 10:40 writer right correct okay so tell me how your book is 10:45 um Science Fiction and Fantasy together uh so this one definitely has elements 10:51 of both um it does take place in another world there um 10:58 it it definitely has some quote-unquote magic 11:04 um that being said it's it's not very far removed from our real world if you are a 11:10 person who believes in spiritual warfare and that there are uh Miracles and even 11:16 uh you know demons and and a devil who will be given Authority in the last days 11:22 to perform Miracles as our Bible uh prophesies then 11:29 it's really I I wouldn't even call it fantasy if that's you know but it but it isn't our Bible it isn't our world it 11:36 isn't our end time story it's a different world and it's a end times story that runs kind of parallel there 11:44 are some uh important differences and I I made differences intentionally because 11:49 I didn't want someone to read this and think it's an allegory for Revelation and then get hooked on the 11:57 Theology and then you know start trying to pick it apart and decipher what I 12:02 believe and what they should believe and I I just didn't want it to be that close 12:07 and get that messy so there are some differences and I also wanted it to be First Entertainment 12:14 and second have some theological themes because 12:20 you know I wasn't coming at this trying to preach um I'm not a pastor I'm not trying to 12:26 give a sermon people have that opportunity to go on YouTube and and listen to Somebody 12:32 preach at them anytime they want uh when I was in high school I read Siddhartha and that was a good book I really 12:39 enjoyed that book and it's about a uh well it's been 20 years again so I'm a 12:44 little fuzzy but it it did have a lot to do with the faith that is not mine and uh 12:52 while I was able to appreciate the the pros appreciate the 12:57 story and the craft of that story um I was also able to keep a distance and 13:04 not feel like I was being preached to but I feel like I was watching a character go on a journey and yes it had 13:11 to do with the faith that is not mine so I wanted to keep that distance with this book and allow for people who are not 13:19 um who don't think like me to read it and still enjoy it and not feel preached 13:24 to not feel judged but maybe the you know kind of 13:29 have some questions and be able to think about things in a different perspective maybe see things 13:34 in a new light they've never seen before so um yeah I did not approach this trying to preach I approached it trying to 13:41 um basically just entertain and uh but like I said like it's it's gonna get in 13:47 there because it's who I am so you know I had an interesting author on a few 13:53 weeks ago and he he had a very well put point he said you and this is to 13:59 paraphrase him you can't say and here's a learning moment you have to like ease them into it you have to um capture 14:07 their attention with how great your writing is and then you can slip all the allegory messages and you want and so I 14:13 really like that from from him and from you as well now I do have a question more about your branding so to speak I 14:21 Googled you and the first thing that comes up is Christian Author and I think that's great that you're out there with your faith and I think that's honorable 14:27 and respectable um are you afraid though that you would maybe chase people off from the secular 14:32 world who don't want anything to have to do with Christianity you're afraid that they're going to be turned off to your writing because of that 14:39 no I mean uh you know Jesus has always been 14:44 a very uh divisive person um he came to separate you know the 14:50 wheat from the Chaffee he came to separate the goats from the sheep and um I'm not writing this book with that 14:57 intention of separating anybody or being divisive but you know I can't help but 15:02 speak the truth and Jesus is the truth and he's going to uh 15:08 I'm not doing it he's doing it I'm just saying his name and uh you know some 15:14 people are going to accept him some people are going to mock him and 15:19 you know that's that's just the way it is so I'm Not Afraid um to just speak the truth I am not saying 15:28 it in a way that I think is going to go out of my way and scare anybody away but it's it's just 15:34 something you have to accept that especially uh like I said I grew up in California so 15:41 it's just part of the deal here you're on the front lines where um you're going 15:46 to be persecuted here if you speak up and say what you believe you're going to be fired from your job and then have to 15:52 end up starting your own business like me um you're going to um you know have to pull your kids out 15:58 of school because they might not be welcome because of their medical choices you're going to have to 16:04 um you know you're going to be kicked out of a restaurant or a store um because you're not going along with 16:11 the way of the world because I don't fear you know him who can kill the flesh you 16:17 know I fear Him who can throw Body and Soul into hell for all eternity so it's definitely the front lines here in 16:23 California and you can't be scared to just say it how it is so I definitely am not afraid to say it how it is but I I 16:30 also try to do that with love and empathy one on the flip side of that coin is I like I said I live here in 16:37 California so the other side of that is I have love for a lot of people that maybe a lot of Christians in other parts 16:44 of the countries who are in more of a like-minded situation which sounds nice 16:50 to me sometimes but you know I'm I'm surrounded by people who don't think 16:55 like me at all times especially as a creative and a musician growing up playing in rock bands and being 17:01 backstage with other bands and you know so I have a lot of friends who don't 17:07 think like me and I'm I enjoy those relationships you know I try very hard 17:15 not to come at anything in a judgmental way but to commit everything in a loving way and I think that's something that 17:21 Christ did as well but at the same time it's not loving to lie to anybody or hide the truth 17:26 so yeah interesting interesting viewpoints that 17:32 I think mainstream so to speak Christianity in America could hear which is be loving 17:37 and patient with everyone even if they are different than you and let's not forget that Jesus ate with the tax 17:44 collectors and the Sinners and he turned the water into wine at wedding parties and stuff he was not just hanging out 17:50 with people who thought like him though maybe there weren't too many people to follow him anyway so again I do appreciate 17:58 where you're coming from and thank you for standing up for for that uh do you have another question though going back 18:03 to your book you mentioned that there's some quote unquote spiritual warfare going on is are there any notes of 18:10 Peretti's in into this uh Expos it was this present Darkness 18:16 uh you know what I am embarrassed to admit that I read about half of uh this 18:23 present darkness and while I was really enjoying it and wanted to finish it I got busy and um I'm a I'm a parent with 18:30 two young kids who are homeschooling I'm working running we have several businesses my wife and I um there are 18:36 phases in my life where I just can't read as much as I love it so I got uh overtaken by that tsunami and did not 18:43 finish it and you know I I haven't gotten back to it I still intend to finish it 18:49 um that being said uh I read it after I had published the withering So within this 18:56 last year I read the first half and um it didn't seem like there was too many 19:03 similarities in how we handled it and how we um presented spiritual warfare 19:10 but of course you know at its core it's the same thing it's good versus evil 19:16 it's uh spirits that are trying to manipulate and influence uh human beings 19:22 and you know some humans who are aware of this and are um 19:27 have eyes to see and ears to hear and then there's some humans who are completely oblivious to these things and 19:34 of course that makes them more susceptible and easily manipulated and so yeah at its core it's it's a pretty 19:41 similar thing um but the way that we approach it is very very different 19:47 by chance have you ever read his other book The Oath no I haven't but I've heard it's very 19:52 good that is one of the recommended novels of all time highly recommend it it's um 19:58 it's more of a fantasy so to speak but I think in it he doesn't necessarily portrayed his fantasy it's all really 20:05 happening I'm not going to ruin anything but it is incredibly good and very intense and 20:10 kind of a Twist in it that you probably didn't see coming so I'll leave it at that you guys can all look at it 20:17 um so what makes your book unique and I want to kind of approach this from two 20:23 different angles one um the plot maybe in comparison to other books whether you've read things like it 20:30 how does it compare or if you've never compared anything to it and then also maybe you're writing style if you can get into that a little bit 20:36 yeah so my writing style let's start with that I don't know what my writing 20:41 style is I just write and I'm waiting for people to tell me what my writing style is because uh you know everybody 20:47 wants to know who who do you like who can I compare you to I have no idea man if you've read this 20:54 book and you have some idea of who to compare me to I would love to know so that you know that would make my job a 21:01 lot easier but you know it's like it's really hard to critique yourself fairly 21:06 and honestly so um I think I've heard that I have quick 21:12 chapters um compared to other authors which people say makes it a lot easier to 21:19 um they want to just keep going because like oh is you know that seemed like it just flew by and it ended on kind of a 21:27 suspenseful note and so I definitely tried to do that so I guess that's part 21:32 of writing style I tried to end each chapter in a part that makes you want to keep going a little bit 21:37 um it kind of just naturally happened though to be honest I wasn't trying too hard I I just noticed it was happening 21:43 and I was like okay I like this this is let's keep this up um 21:48 but as far as what makes it unique and the plot what makes it stand out from other authors that's a tough one 21:55 um I think I mean I haven't read any other books that 22:02 that feel like this book um this story 22:08 feels unique to me I've heard other people say the same thing it feels like 22:13 an older book like an older Quest book like Lord of the Rings but it's not epic and Grand in a scale it's a lot more 22:20 grounded and down to earth um it's it's definitely heavily heavy on 22:27 characters um most of what I loved reading when I was younger was like Steinbeck and 22:33 Dickens and literature so while I feel like that's at the heart 22:39 that more like um that philosophical character development 22:46 um is at its heart I also love sci-fi and fantasy and Adventure so that's on 22:52 the surface um so it's definitely I would say it's it's 22:58 kind of like if you take one of those like explosions everywhere type of movies and then put something really 23:03 powerful at its core and then as far as the actual plot goes 23:10 I think you asked yeah there's moments that are kind of a little bit controversial um not not in an inappropriate way what 23:17 I mean by that is like my editor for instance who is fantastic and gave me so much wisdom and helped me make this 23:24 story what it is there's one thing in particular we argued about and it was the ending um so maybe I shouldn't say too much but 23:32 but uh there's let me just say that I 23:38 wish that more people would make stories 23:44 shoot how do I say this without giving to it I don't want to give anything away so I'm just going to stop there and and uh I tried it didn't work out so well 23:52 let's let's kind of dig into a different part of that conversation then for for us unpublished folk what is an argument 23:59 with an editor seem like sound like okay and um so argument might be a strong 24:04 word I had a very good relationship with my editor and um 24:10 and while we did go a little bit back on back and forth on one issue it was only 24:17 because to me if I had changed that particular thing 24:23 it would have cut the legs out of from under the whole theme the whole point of 24:28 the story so that's the only reason that there was one thing that I kind of did stick to my guns on however throughout 24:34 the story there was some big things that she had me change and I wasn't opposed 24:40 to the work um so like for instance there were two characters 24:45 two main characters that she convinced me that needed to be like 24:51 combined into one so those are like the big picture things that sometimes change in stories I hear 24:56 that's that one in particular or or vice versa like one character that needs to be split into two 25:02 um I hear other authors talk about that and that's a big change because it changes 25:07 every conversation it changes it changes so much about I had to rewrite the entire novel again you know 25:15 I had already written it many times and so that was very deflating to hear her say like this needs to change and I'm 25:22 like yes you're right I know it does so um but it was worth it 25:28 um and so yeah I mean going back and forth with an editor is 25:33 a really interesting and rewarding process because usually they know what they're talking 25:40 about they're going to give you a lot of advice I mean I don't have too much experience I've worked with 25:46 um three editors and not just on this book but on on 25:51 other stories as well so yeah you have to go into it 25:58 with thick skin and I played music my whole life I'm used to rejection you 26:03 know and you you're used to being critiqued and people not understanding what you're getting at and that's fine 26:09 you know you just have to develop that thick skin and understand that everybody has their own lens through 26:16 which they view the world and your story isn't going to quite make sense to everybody 26:24 um it's not going to resonate with everybody and it's not even going to um you know some people are just gonna 26:29 not like it and so you have to just accept that and when you hear feedback you don't like you 26:36 have to really think to yourself like okay does she have a point like am I am I against this because I don't want to do 26:43 the work am I against this because you know I I just got attached to this 26:50 idea or am I against this because it really is wrong it's like no the way it 26:55 is is right so you know all of those can be the right answer but you just have to be honest with yourself and 27:02 um at the end of the day you're both trying to make the best product yeah yeah I think those are all really 27:09 three good points I've never thought of before and I think ultimately it ties to our ego which is do we are we good 27:17 enough or are we better than do we think we're better than other people 27:22 um and people who have been around the industry longer than we have probably know better than than me at least I 27:29 don't know maybe there's some prodigies out there excuse me 27:34 but um yeah okay so tell me a little bit about then how you started writing did 27:40 you ever like go to school for it it sounds like you've been reading since you were younger did you ever just have this have this desire in you to write 27:45 ever since you were young yeah I did as a kid I used to make comics um I loved you know Saturday morning 27:52 cartoons ninja turtles were huge um Thundercats and you know all those 27:58 Saturday morning type cartoons I just loved those I love stories I loved um 28:04 comic books I used to make my own comic books first it was like Spider-Man and 28:09 Wolverine kind of fan fiction even though I didn't know that's what it was called then I was just drawing them and 28:15 learning how to draw learning how to make those panels and word Bubbles and then graduated onto making my own 28:20 characters I started making claymations little stop motion things with a video 28:25 camera and um as I got older I learned to play guitar started writing 28:32 songs and um that just kind of took over and that's what I did for the majority of my 28:39 um you know teens and 20s and I mean I still do it I'm still making music in 28:45 fact I have a song releasing on the 17th of February um so like I'm still writing songs 28:53 um but that has been a big part of my writing um and you'd be surprised how similar 28:58 songwriting is to writing a novel to writing a short story it's I mean you're telling a story but 29:04 it's just the format or the um the constraints that you have to work with so obviously a novel you have a lot of 29:10 room to build out a world with uh writing a song you have like you know 29:16 maybe every song structure is different but let's just say like two verses and a 29:22 bridge and a chorus that you can maybe like adjust from course to chorus a little bit but 29:28 you gotta it's kind of like a haiku you know can I tell a story with this many 29:33 syllables so there's lots of ways to tell stories and um you know songwriting 29:39 has has been a big part of my learning how to tell 29:45 stories and I have a lot of experience with that so the novel was challenging for me because 29:52 maybe that's right why I write really quick chapters so I don't know 29:57 and so then tell me about your journey to publication you mentioned an editor so are you traditionally published or 30:03 are you self-published uh it's my publisher is a small Indie publisher called Ambassador International and so 30:12 basically the way I found them I had 30:18 I had no experience I still really have very little experience in this industry I'm just getting my feet wet 30:25 um and that when I was starting to write this story I mean I just I just write 30:31 because I enjoy writing I didn't actually think that this was ever going to be a published novel I thought you 30:37 know I guess there's the possibility that could happen but that's not why I'm writing it I'm writing it because I have the story in me and you know that's 30:46 it's just what I do I just enjoy telling stories and and using my imagination and 30:51 coming up with this stuff and so I eventually at some point it became close 30:57 to a Finnish novel and I realized wow I could actually make this you know a 31:02 novel so I started doing a little research how do you actually make it into a a novel oh it's a manuscript what 31:08 what's this I don't okay you know and I'm just learning the very Basics like with this almost finished first draft 31:17 and so once I finished my first draft I started Googling what do you do with 31:22 this oh query okay so I start querying and of course like it's not polished at 31:28 all it's just a first draft that is so clunky and um yeah I send it out way too early to 31:34 everybody which is like the biggest No-No that everybody you know who has 31:39 any knowledge of this industry is like yeah don't don't do that you're gonna just shoot yourself in the foot but I 31:45 didn't know that so that's what I did and then after I had queried everybody 31:51 and everybody said you know either didn't reply or said no then I learned oh okay you gotta like do 31:58 multiple drafts send it out to Beta readers get feedback you're like get it just tight and then and clean and 32:06 Polished and then think about querying and you can't really query twice you 32:13 know with the same title so basically at that point I was like oh okay I'm sure there's somebody out there 32:19 I haven't queried yet so I I polished it up got it all ready to go and uh that 32:25 was a lot of work and a lot of time but I eventually got to the point where I felt good and I started crying again but 32:32 right at that start of of that querying um session I found Faith pitch which was 32:40 a pitch party on Twitter if you don't know what that is basically where certain agents and editors of a certain 32:47 genre will agree to be part of a a pitch party and people will be able to make 32:54 pitches throughout the day usually it's like you can make six pitches throughout the day and you have to use these 33:01 hashtags and you know that tells us what genre it is and 33:06 uh basically you're pitching to Twitter and there's people who are in the 33:12 industry who are following along with certain hashtags that they want to represent like I want to represent 33:17 children's books so I'm gonna follow PBE or whatever 33:22 um or I wanna I want to represent um Christian fantasy also I'm going to 33:28 just follow along with Chris hashtag Christian fantasy all day well I did that for Faith pitch was a Christian one and I 33:37 got several agents asking agents and editors asking for my manuscript I sent 33:45 it into three of them I think two of them responded to publishers 33:51 and one of them I was kind of like I'm not sure about this one I'm not feeling it 33:57 and then the other one I was like actually I really like the way these guys communicate I feel like we have 34:02 some chemistry here and I went with them and that's uh Ambassador International 34:07 that's super cool I like that I've never heard of that Twitter thing so I have to check that out sometime yeah if you can 34:13 always just Google like uh Twitter pitch parties and there's a whole host of them so like if you're into horror there's 34:18 horror ones if you're into mystery there's mystery ones okay awesome 34:24 um all right well unfortunately I'm losing my voice losing my voice so we're gonna have to tie this up here shortly 34:30 but we do have a couple more things um what impact do you want your book to 34:36 have on all your readers uh you know when I was in high school like I said I I had found C.S Lewis and 34:44 and felt very inspired to to do something with my time here on 34:51 this Earth that I gotta be careful I say this because I 34:58 don't think of this in an egotistical egotistical way at all but it can I guess it can sound like it if I don't 35:03 say it right but I don't think that Christ made me to do something that 35:13 that doesn't matter you know like we're all waves in the sand like I'm just I'm just a breath of air and then I'm gone 35:21 um but the work that we have to do here I think is eternal I think that the kingdom that we 35:29 serve is eternal and so I want the work that I do to be Eternal I wanted to make 35:34 an impact on people's Souls um you know and 35:41 you can do that in any kind of industry in a service job where you are doing something that is surface and 35:47 superficial you can still make that kind of impact with from from one soul to 35:53 another so I'm definitely not knocking any other um careers but that's why I play music 36:00 and write songs and write stories because story is something that 36:05 resonates with your soul not necessarily with you know your skin like skin care or your stomach food you know 36:13 so it it it feeds your soul and so that's 36:18 that's really all it is is I'm not necessarily wanting my work to be this amazing special work that's held up on a 36:25 pedestal I just want to make sure that I'm doing what God called me to do and he gave me lungs to spread his message 36:31 so I'm gonna do that through stories and through song and that's that's what I was made to do so that's what I'm going 36:37 to do whether or not it's received awesome that's a that's a good mission 36:43 and so finally would you like to read an excerpt from your novels oh yeah uh sure 36:50 I think I had a I'd intended to find one that would work 36:56 and I kind of slacked on that you know what I'm going to do I I know what I'm going to do 37:03 I just stumbled upon this and I think it's a good spot to do it um 37:09 so this is actually well I'll just read it I I like to I 37:16 like to put my songwriting into my stories a little bit just have some fun with it so uh 37:23 go ahead nod submitted you should hear it Ro Jima studied nod then row after a moment 37:32 setup call and took a breath okay the eagle and the serpent it goes like 37:39 this she must sing with a voice that was plain and pure like a true north wind 37:45 piping its cheery way through the darrows before the world was codified the eagle 37:52 could not not abide when first breath first Man's Chest did 37:57 rise the eagle reigned from Regal Skies he made men tumascent with pride and 38:04 women's slight then later wide he made All Creatures dim and wise then 38:09 orchestrated their demise the planet shook the Seas were dried the 38:16 bulk of living creatures died the eagle would the world disband except the 38:21 cunning Serpent's stand the sole defender of the land he slithered North Cross desert sand the 38:29 tallest mountain did he climb expostulating Eagle's crime from out his mouth came forth aflame 38:37 for eagle's nest did serpent aim he set the northern sky Ablaze and 38:43 ushered in the end of days alas the eagle fraught with fear did see 38:49 this flee in form of Bombardier a flaming egg the eagle hurled which 38:55 bore down on the Dying World the days to come it's come and go the 39:02 withering of noloro deliverest thy final blow a fall to fell 39:08 all Life Below so if some of that sounded like I don't 39:14 think that's right you're right because that's kind of the uh 39:20 antithesis of the holy book in in that world so that's coming from the enemy's 39:25 perspective just just want to clear that up in case there's some in there you're like I don't think that was uh kosher 39:31 well so I I did hear a couple things in there that I wanted to ask about which was so in your story let's just call it 39:38 your Universe um is this universe created by the god that you believe in of this universe or 39:44 is it a completely different God or Pantheon or anything else 39:49 yeah that was uh that's kind of a big topic like I feel 39:55 like I should just like read my um I'm not going to but 40:00 I basically wrote a um an author's note at the beginning 40:07 that really talks about that as as kind of a disclaimer to readers 40:14 to approach this book in the right way like this is entertainment you know this is not 40:20 um this is not claiming to be history of the world or the universe it's not 40:26 claiming to be so so yeah it's it's not at all claiming to 40:32 be anything that is even consistent with the Bible that being said yes it is the 40:38 god that I believe in it is Christ it mentions him by name it's a christ-centered book 40:43 um but it is also fiction and meant to be fiction and it's more of an imagining of 40:52 if it kind of so that's where like the space Trilogy was a big inspiration to 40:57 me it's like okay if there was another world and 41:03 and it were to end um well I guess I'm gonna give some stuff away if I really go down that line of 41:09 thought there's some there's a there's a couple twists in here that it's it's a little 41:16 difficult to really I have to dance around the subject and I I don't know if it's going to be very 41:21 satisfying for anybody well I mean maybe that's what you want you don't want them to be satisfied so they go and buy your 41:27 book The Link's gonna be in the description yeah exactly it was totally on purpose 41:33 for marketing kind of touching on um you know Universe building and and 41:40 gods and pantheons and all that stuff I don't necessarily think that you you need to put all of your own beliefs into 41:47 a book and if you don't feel like you're cheating yourself for the audience like take Tolkien for example he was a he was 41:53 a very outspoken Christian and he pulled all of his Pantheon um from Norse mythology not all of it 41:59 but some things about it um and he created a Pantheon of the Valar and he had a louvitar who was the 42:07 god over all the Valar and so there's things in there that are clearly not in 42:12 the Bible that he believed in but he he created this fantastic world that we all know and love these days 42:18 um so that's that's my final comment but do you have any final comments that you want to give as well no I mean I would say even some of those 42:24 things are in the Bible I mean so there's definitely some pagan gods that are mentioned in the Bible and uh you 42:31 know a lot of those Gods I don't think are mythological necessarily I think that um 42:37 there's a lot of a lot of Truth to a lot of those old myths and um 42:43 it's fun to to dig into those but um yeah I 42:48 have actually this so this book The withering to me was something I tackled 42:54 completely unaware of any kind of like 42:59 um education on writing I I hadn't even gone on YouTube and figured out like how do you write like nothing I just I just 43:06 wrote this book and it's to me it's like almost like a practice because I have learned so much since publishing it 43:14 attending realmakers um just getting in touch with other authors and learning so much along the 43:22 way that I feel like okay that was a fun like dip in my toes in the water 43:28 practice run now I'm excited to like get some real stuff done you know what I mean so I'm actually working on some 43:34 projects I'm pretty excited about and can't wait to finish and and get out there to the world 43:41 awesome well when you get those projects finished or close to finish we'll have you on again and talk about those 43:47 yeah I'd love to thanks for having me absolutely Patrick good to meet you 43:52 too 43:57 thank you