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29 February 2012

Interview with Clasher Will Ramirez

*this clash hosted by April W Gardner

Welcome back to our Unpublished Clash!

Here's a fun story for you--Will Ramirez has been with us before! This time last year, he competed against author Diane Graham. Diane took the prize that day, but amazingly, of all the "blind" submissions we read for today's Clash, Will's caught our attention, yet again. Agents and editors, take note! And Will, thank you for coming back to play. :-)

Last week, he generously shared the first 500 words of his unpublished novel, Soul Yearning. Voting is over, but you can still read his excerpt HERE. And course, there’s still the opportunity to enter the drawing for one of these two WhiteFire Publishing novels (shown on right), which is being donated to this clash. Thank you, WhiteFire!

Will's here today, talking about his book as well as the dead wasp in his car. That’s right. Dead wasp. Will, I have a feeling we’re going to need to hear that “long story”!

In the meantime, name a book you've read that immediately hooked your attention and held it until the last page.

Book of Days by Jim Rubart. I finished it at 4am the same day I purchased it. The story riveted me from page one. I couldn’t put it down.

I haven’t read Book of Days, but if the story is half as captivating as the cover, then I’m already hooked! How many novels have you completed?

Soul Yearning is the opening novel to the four book Godslayer series. It is complete and going through self-editing right now. I’m working on book two in the series as well as a stand-alone entitled Mander’s Scar.

Godslayer series. The name alone makes me sit up and take notice! Three books, to date. Congratulations! Each completed novel is a major accomplishment worthy of recognition. How would you respond to someone who said, "I've got a novel in my head but would never be good enough to write it"?

Anyone can write! Oh wait. Isn’t that from Ratatouille? When I began to study the craft of writing, I was horrified at how many novice mistakes I made. But the excitement of growing as a writer outweighed any discouragement I experienced. So write, study, and keep on writing. Not many mighty are chosen. Most of us need a ton of grace and a lot of hard work :-).

You took the words straight out of my brain “grace” and “hard work.” Both vital components! Tell us about your novel. Who is the main character? What is his heart's desire and what is keeping him from accomplishing or obtaining it?

Soul Yearning follows the life of a young priest named Albione who serves the god of valor. His heart’s desire is to bring honor to his family name by rising to the highest rank in the temple like his father before him. When it turns out he’s been marked by the Most High God as the prophesied godslayer, the entire pantheon turns against him. As he stubbornly clings to his dream, it puts not only his life, but an entire world in danger.

The world in danger? Yikes! Alboine’s created quite a mess, but isn’t that exactly where God teaches us the most, when we have no place to look but Up? 

Name three things in your car that should not be there.

My wallet (yes it’s been stolen, and no I haven’t learned my lesson), a class of 2008 tassel (I’m 37), and a dead wasp (long story).

Like I said, I think we need more on the wasp. Please don’t tell me it stung you while you were driving. Happened to my husband once. The thing flew in the window, landed on his leg, and crawled up his shorts. It didn’t live long enough to reach whatever destination it had in mind. :-)

It being February, tell us about your most memorable (good or bad!) Valentine's Day.

In 2003, my bride and I spent Valentine’s Day at a couple’s retreat. We’d been trying for six years to have a second child. My bride lost a baby just months before on Thanksgiving Day. Two weeks prior to the couple’s retreat, we were at a conference where we both felt the Lord encouraged us that she would get pregnant again soon. Our second child was born in November :-). 

I’m sorry for your painful loss, but what a beautiful conclusion to the story! A memorable Valentine’s Day, indeed. ;-)

Getting back to your novel, what message does it contain that you hope readers come away with?

The folly of stubborn pride and power of redeeming love.

Excellent. It’s been a joy chatting with you, but before you go, do you have a question for COTT readers?

How important is it to you that one of the main characters of a story share your gender?

I’ve often wondered this myself, and look forward to seeing how others feel about it. Remember readers, every comment gives you another entry into our drawing!

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Item Reviewed: Interview with Clasher Will Ramirez Rating: 5 Reviewed By: April Gardner