Um. Okay. You just seemed to come out of nowhere. But uh… Welcome to Whimsy by Candlelight. Who are you?
The name’s Woods, Brent Woods. Brent is my middle name, though, short for Brenton. My sister Jean and came up with that name when I was ten because neither of us liked my given name, Elliot – with two L’s. I’m my maternal grandfather’s namesake. My mom didn’t want me being called Junior. So, she refused to name me Bruce, which was my father’s name. Instead, she gave me a middle initial. And so, Jean and I had an option of choosing a name. And afterward, everyone except for my parents called me Brent.
And how in the world did you find my blog?
All I wanted was to get back to the In-Between New Orleans with my two deceased girlfriends. Yeah, that’s a mash-up of words you don’t hear often. But that’s the mission Plush the Magic Drag Queen sent me on. The trouble is, the Triumvirate Council hadn’t exactly approved of me spiriting away Pam and Cassie. So, on the downlow, we made it to the mountains that encircle Assembly, which is where most people end up when they die. Anyway, if I thought I had outsmarted the Council, I was wrong. They had erected a tall fence made entirely of energy. Fortunately, Plush had given me protective, full-body suit that made me impervious to most anything, except I wasn’t exactly sure what would happen if I tried crossing the fence. But one thing I did know was that neither Pam nor Cassie would survive unless they were inside of me. And so, a most curious situation occurred of me having two past girlfriends sharing space inside of me. And it wasn’t comfortable for anyone concerned.
Yikes! Just listening to that spiel, my heart is pounding and my breath is shallow. That is all super-intense. I mean, life can be hectic and complicated enough — especially without having to share body-space with exes (I don’t even know if I want to know how all that works…)
Okay… now that I am somewhat over the secondary trauma of hearing about your angsty life, here is your next question: Who is your creator?
Generally, I trust Elgon to tell my story. He writes well enough. Certainly, he’s been there to witness most things. But he is not me. I’ve done things he would have never had the guts to attempt let alone accomplish. Maybe that’s a good thing. He has the patience to sit on his butt all day and hammer out a story on his keyboard.
How would I best describe him? Well, he looks his age. Definitely. I look younger because of my wolfcat heritage. So, even though we are the same age, I look like a kid compared to him. He’s a little shorter than me, but close enough to call six foot two. I’m in much better shape, again because ti comes naturally. I have to hand it to him, though. How many old farts do you know who can walk five miles a day? Or even venture ten miles from time to time. Or rather, how many do you know who would even try doing that? He says he does it for his health. But I think it’s because it clears his mind and lets him focus on whatever story he is writing. You see, he fictionalizes some things about me, which is fine, because like anyone else most of my life had been boring. It’s the moments when it’s not that makes for a story worth telling.
Otherwise, I’d say Elgon is fairly unimaginative when it comes to his descriptions of me. Except for me being much more gregarious, we could be carbon copies up to a point. Same dirty blond hair, same blue eyes, same broad shoulders, same self-deprecating humor. Around age 30 or so, the wolfcat thing for me started kicking into full gear. By the time he was 40, the difference between us was significant.
Tell us about your creator’s latest writing project.
It’s called Deadmen Don’t Wear Watches, book three of the Fried Windows Series. Set in Southern California, it concludes the unfinished plotlines from books one and two. The Program dispatches Brent to Irvine where there has been a number of mysterious murders, one a month, each occurring roughly 28 days apart, each corpse mutilated as if gutted by wild animals and completely drained of their blood. The Program wants to discretely assist in the investigation, allowing the local authorities to get full credit for solving the serial murders.
Meanwhile, Brent has unfinished business in the Inworld where his alter ego Carlos must lead a wolf rebellion against the overlord who seized control of the realm from Carlos parents. And he must restore Lady Lucern to her rightful place in Sky Arch.
And there is the matter of locating a haunted house north of Boston in the Outworld where in the 19th Century a little girl named Mattie fell down the staircase to her death, breaking her connection with Lady Lucern in the Inworld. Fortunately, owning a haunted house would make a perfect home for Brent to settle with his dis-corporeal fiancée, Pam.
If you don’t mind, I am going to direct the next questions to Elgon.
Sure, no problem.
Elgon, tell us what aspects of childhood influenced your love for writing.
I suffered through the first few grades of school because of my undiagnosed dyslexia. I was labeled a slow learning because I struggled with reading. But I remembered nearly everything anyone said to me. So, despite my low grades in reading, I was able to advance from grade to grade. In the second grade, my teacher read to us over several days prior to the seasonal break. The book was A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. I was hooked on the magic of telling a story. Also, I knew I needed to master reading, somehow. So, over the next couple of years, I taught myself a different way to read, recognizing patterns of words. It sped up the process considerably, but only when I read silently because I did not bother to pronounce what I was reading. After all, I knew the words and the meaning, so what was the point? Of course, I still struggled whenever called upon to read out loud, but eventually I learned how to scan ahead and recite what I’d just read in near real time. I still have trouble ‘sounding out’ unfamiliar words. But because I have read so many books over the years, my vocabulary is sufficient for any task. I suppose from the mere consumption of so many books, I acquired my love of telling stories and developed the skills to create fiction.
What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
You always hear the same thing – don’t give up. And while that’s true, honing the craft of writing is more than just writing in volume and doing it regularly enough for it to become more than just a habit. To be successful, a writer must read voraciously. At first, a writer must spend more time reading than writing. The desire to write, if you are truly to become a writer, will manifest from being well read. Then and only then, you can begin to write according to some schedule, daily at a prescribed time if possible, and then you focus on never quitting. Also, if you can’t deal with rejection, writing is not for you.
Well, I am glad Brent and Elgon Williams found their way to Whimsy by Candlelight. Elgon’s stories are sure to make readers laugh even as they are having their minds bent, distorted, and blown by Elgon’s imaginary worlds and creatures! You can find out more about Elgon and his books via the following transportation modules:
Elgon’s Amazon Author page: https://www.amazon.com/Elgon-Williams/e/B001K8TYXU/