We learn by asking questions.
Learning has become easier with the internet(s)!
For many years the only chance a fan had of speaking to bestselling author Terry Brooks was to meet him at tour events or conventions. Now, via Unbound Worlds and his website, Terry will accept two questions from each fan per month. On the last day of the month, five questions will be randomly drawn. Terry will answer these five questions and they will be posted monthly for your enjoyment.
Below are the questions selected last month and Terry’s answers! Enjoy!
Note: This section may contain spoilers!
Hope your spring weather is what you were hoping for. But looking around the country, I expect for many of you it isn’t. Not so wonderful in the PNW either, although we have had some sunny days that suggest a great summer is on the way. As I write this edition of ASK TERRY, it is pouring cats and dogs. All the better to help me focus on this batch of questions. Let us see . . .
Judah M. writes: God forbid anything happening, but if you were unable to ever write again starting tomorrow, have you ever thought of a successor that may finish your work?
Terry Brooks replies: Bite your tongue, Judah. I will learn to write with my toes if needed. I will even learn to write from beyond the grave. Lots of other writers have done it. Or maybe not, now that I think about it. Those were not really the writers whose names appear on the cover of the book in giant print. So, anyway. No, I have given it not a thought. I am only just now entering the late stages of middle age and shall continue on for another 20 or 30 years. I plan to write my final book at age 100. If I were to keel over, I expect my faithful wife and greatest friend Judine would work with Del Rey to find a writer for all those unpublished manuscripts.
Gail Ragsdale writes: I would love to see a revision of the World of Shannara, to update the characters and happenings from the books written since it was last published. Maybe at the end of the series?
Terry Brooks replies: I expect to see this happen sometime soon. They do issue new editions of this work regularly. Since I am about to publish the first book in a new trilogy – The High Druid’s Blade – I imagine they will wait until those books are out before they consider doing another new edition. But I will check with them and see what they think. Thanks for the vote of confidence in the companion volume to the Shannara series.
Anonymous writes: Hey Terry, I’ve read almost all your books (mostly audio books cause they’re easy to do other things with) but do you plan to expand farther than Witch Wraith? It seemed to end very suddenly and it was one of my personal favorites, with the witch now the Straken Queen in the Forbidding.
Terry Brooks replies: I do plan to continue going forward with the story. I thought I wrapped up the immediate story of Aphenglow and the Druid search for the missing Elfstone sufficiently to leave the matter of the Straken Queen for a while. But I will come back to it, and I hope you will find the wait worth it when I do.
David Salchow writes: You’ve always numbered your chapters. Other authors title or title and number their chapters. Is there a rationale behind the author’s choice? Is it stylistic or strategic or other?
Terry Brooks replies: As far as I know, everyone does it the way they want. I have almost always numbered. The exception is the Magic Kingdom series. But to tell you the truth, coming up with new chapter titles is a pain in the butt. Numbers don’t require any thought. You just follow the sequence. I expect I will continue on in the same way with most of my books. Until I change my mind about it, anyway.
Devin Reed writes: I was wondering how you choose books to review? Do you find them or does your publisher or someone else find them for you?
Terry Brooks replies: Boy, there’s a question that begs for an answer. Wish I had some commonsense offering to put down here. However, my choices are mostly random. I will always review something current if I find a book I love. I try not to focus on fantasy and science fiction since I read lots of other kinds of books as well and believe this is important for expanding your horizons as a writer. If I don’t find anything I love, I will go back to something I loved in the past and review that. Once in a while, someone will recommend I look at a book, and I will try to do that. Once in an even greater while, I will consider a new author’s work. Much of what I read doesn’t get reviewed. I won’t review something I didn’t like because I don’t believe in slamming other authors for their work. Everyone is doing the best they can, so one person’s opinion only counts for so much.
See you in a week or so!
To ask your own questions of Terry Brooks, visit his website at www.terrybrooks.net!
Shawn Speakman is the author of The Dark Thorn, an urban/epic fantasy hybrid novel bestselling author Terry Brooks calls, “a fine tale by a talented writer.”