Tomorrow, The Gypsy Morph by Terry Brooks will be released. So why feature author and screenwriter Eldon Thompson today?
Because the two writers are connected in a very unique way, possibly so unique it has never been seen before.
Eldon Thompson is one of the nicest and humblest men you will ever meet. Writers for the most part are very considerate, well-spoken, and care about their fans a great deal. They also tend to be introverted. But Eldon, with a fast smile and eagerness to talk about all things fantasy related, allays fears that he could “crush ye likeah woorum” (best Braveheart accent there). Yes, he is a weightlifter; no, he will not be your body guard… well… maybe for the right price!
At any rate, Eldon has been working on his writing craft since he was young and it has paid off. I first met him—albeit electronically—around 1997 when I had begun a dedication Terry Brooks website. Eldon wanted to contact Terry for the right to create a screenplay based on one of Terry’s books. At the time, I had no contact with Terry and could not help. But Eldon and I remained electronic pen friends, both being avid Terry Brooks fans and having mutual respect for the fantasy genre.
Driven by his passion for screenwriting and Hollywood, Eldon took matters into his own hands and tracked Terry down at the Maui Writers Conference & Retreat. There Eldon learned a great deal about writing from some of the best authors, editors and agents in the business. Upon leaving Hawaii, Eldon took Terry’s advice and mentorship and wrote The Crimson Sword, which is the first book in The Legend of Asahiel trilogy. He quickly found a great agent, Matt Bialer, and from there sold his series to HarperCollins.
All I will say about The Crimson Sword and Eldon’s trilogy is this: Nothing is what it seems. The trilogy seems to use the same tired tropes of the epic fantasy genre until Eldon twists those tropes, turns them upside down, and creates something new and original. If you are a fan of Terry’s earlier work, you’ll enjoy Eldon’s.
But that’s not the only connection between Eldon and Terry. Eldon has been entrenched in the Hollywood atmosphere for years and years, and after the success of Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings movies, Hollywood opened up to other possible fantasy movies. We’ve seen a handful since then—some good, others not so good—but Hollywood is still willing to try. With Terry’s permission, Eldon took his Shannara movie script and shopped it to movie studios until Warner Bros. bought the rights to produce a live-action movie.
To my knowledge, it is the first time a writer helped another writer get paid!
And on top of that, we may even get a decent fantasy movie made out of the deal!
As I’ve said, Eldon is a super nice guy. If you ever have the chance to meet him, do so. He is also very accessible on his website at www.eldonthompson.com.
Below are some other YouTube moments with Eldon Thompson, taken at the San Diego Comic-Con 2008. Enjoy!
Eldon gives advice to writers trying to break in:
Eldon talks about The Divine Talisman, the final book in his trilogy:
Eldon uncovers what he will work on next: