Here in our ninth edition of the Indie Author Spotlight I am aiming to keep bringing positivity despite what’s going on in the world, which I’ve pretty much withdrawn from for a bit. Today I’m chatting with Thomas Fenske, who I’ve mentioned here at The Edifying Word many, many times over the years; most recently I reviewed his latest work, The Hag Rider, which released just this week. I’ve been a fan of Fenske since I read his first book, and I hope you will be, too.
Thomas Fenske now has four published books and one more coming out this summer (yay!). As he is one of my favorite authors, I’m always thrilled to feature him and his books and I’ve had the great pleasure of writing advance reviews for the last two, which are included in the books (and that makes me feel special). His first three books and the upcoming release are Adventure/Mystery, while The Hag Rider is historical fiction. Good historical fiction, that manages to be obviously anti-racism (which we all need right now) despite being told from the point of view of a Confederate Cavalryman. Now THAT takes some writing skill, my friends, and you should check it out! Now, let’s let him speak!
Thanks for joining us here for the Indie Author Spotlight! Let’s start out with this: what do you want readers to know about you?
My biggest goal is to entertain readers and get them to think. I try to add a little humor and always add as much human realism as I can, in small snippets. I call that writing with a slice of life.
I LOVE that phrase, and I think it perfectly encapsulates what I love about your writing. Please tell us about your published books and any upcoming projects!
As of this writing, I have four books in print and one more coming out this summer. The Fever, A Curse That Bites Deep, and Lucky Strike represent the inaugural trilogy of my Traces of Treasure series. The Hag Rider released this week, and the fourth book of the Traces of Treasure series, Penumbra, will be released in August. A fifth story in the series is planned, and I have a couple of science fiction plots I’ve toyed with for a while, one of those might pop to the surface soon… but with two releases coming out in quick succession I’ll be consumed with marketing for a short while.
Ooh, I’m so excited for Penumbra, book five, AND your sci-fi plans! You’re becoming quite prolific, and I appreciate that you can write well across genres. Have you always been a writer?
I majored in English and took a lot of creative writing course, because it was an upper-division course you could repeat! I dabbled in writing over the course of about 35 years, then finally about ten years ago I dug in my heels and wrote my first (still unpublished) full-length novel. I’ve kept hammering away and managed to interest a small publisher, through which I’ve published all of my books.
Can you tell us about your writing process?
Writing has become a compulsion. When I start a new story, I tell my wife my brain has shifted into novel mode. I have a hard time thinking of anything else when I get into novel mode. I like to fast write, NaNoWriMo-style (sometimes during NaNoWriMo), and work from a loose outline. I find fast writing to be extremely creative because as I push forward, the story tells me where it wants to go. **Quick note for all of you who are wondering what on EARTH NaNoWriMo is — the writing community has an annual “National Novel Writing Month” each November, where participating writers aim to pen an entire novel in one month, with the community to help keep them accountable.
So do you read the same genres you write? Do you have any other hobbies?
I like hard history, and fill in with science fiction, mostly, although I have an abiding appreciation for a masterfully told cozy mystery. I don’t have many other hobbies outside of writing these days. I collect cookbooks, but I’ve run out of space. It loses its appeal when most of your new acquisitions are relegated to tubs.
Sounds like you’re quite busy writing and marketing these days. Are you living your author dream?
I just want to keep writing and publishing. Success? Not sure what that entails. Like I said before, my primary desire is to entertain readers.
Would you like to be featured, too? Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!