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Interview with John Bennett

Whether John is busy working on his next novel or helping his wife make dinner, he will always have time for friends, family, and his fans. For nearly thirty years now, John has lightened people’s days with his seamlessly charming personality and creative ways to make others laugh.

Q.1 Tell us something about yourself not many people know?
I am an open book. I don’t like to lie and I don’t like to hold secrets about myself. Although, I can be trusted with any and all secrets my friends and family wish to vent to me about.

Q.2 Are we going to read more from you in the near future? Any new project you’re working on?
Yes! Absolutely! Right now, I am working on a sequel to my debut novel, The Path of a Titan: The Proving. No release date so far, but I am hoping to be ready to publish by the end of this year.

Q.3 What inspired you to write The Path of a Titan?
Crazy enough, Peirce Brown, author of the Red Rising series inspired me. I picked up his book by sheer chance and fell in love with his entire series. After nearly finishing his trilogy, I was determined to write a better book than him. So, The Path of a Titan was born.

Q.4 What is the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?
Getting their voices right. With the knowledge that males do not think nor act like females, I had to dig deep and truly envision the females of my story and act out exactly what a female should say.

Q.5 How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?
No formula. I have this theory that “my story will write itself.” This means, that if I put pen to paper, and fall into the trance of writing, my characters will speak for themselves, and the world will revolve as my pen writes. It’s truly a surreal, and indescribable feeling to wake up out of this trance and see a full page of writing without stopping.

Q.6 How do you see the future of science fiction literature? Will sci-fi maintains its independence or intertwines with other literary genres?
Of course. The future will always and forever be the future. Technology will always continue to thrive and with that, so will science fiction. 

As for intertwining with other genres, science fiction is a vast genre that can be filled with genres such as fantasy, romance, action, etc. The sky is the limit with how big science fiction can go.

Q.7 How do you see the relationship between science fiction and culture? How about the boundaries between science fiction and reality?
Science fiction is not a false reality, but a dream of what the future can be like. Cultures will change, worlds will change, and people will change. That is the only thing expected in life. As science advances, so will its users until these futuristic worlds we read about become reality.

Q.8 To what extent can science fiction effect or improve the developments in science and technology in human life? Is it right to say that science fiction can change what human life looks like in the future?
Of course. If my book gets in the hands of the young readers that I hope for, one of those bright minds could possibly make some of the creative inventions I make up in my stories. Science fiction inspired me, why couldn’t it inspire others?

Q.9 Is classic science fiction literature different from modern science fiction literature? Have the key aims of the genre changed considerably or not?
No and yes. Every futuristic world comes with flying cars, and holograms where we can swipe our hands to navigate around. That was shown back in older generations and it’s still being depicted now. 

However, the vastness of the worlds we read and watch has expanded. Not only are we drenched in some foreign land of advanced science but in this new age, we are more equipped with understanding it. Seeing something such as a flying car isn’t considered unrealistic now. It’s considered a challenge to be the first to copy it.

Q.10 What do you think are the main reasons for the popularity of science fiction? To what extent has the film industry helped in popularizing the genre?
What makes science fiction popular is that these worlds are built by us. Not gnomes, elves, or wizards, but human beings. Also, the idea that aliens do exist and have their own civilizations and technologies are all futuristically realistic to humans. 

The idea that a man can wield a piece of wood and shoot lightning out of it isn’t realistic, it’s a fairy tale nonetheless. However, still enjoyable, but what makes science fiction exciting is that the world we live in now, could be the world we watch on TV or read about in books.

Q.11 For long, humans have been looking for immortality at all costs. Do you think this will lead to our eventual dehumanization?
Immortality will only do more harm than good. I agree with your statement that if one can be unkillable, then the world as we know it will fall into anarchy.

Q.12 Science fiction has a long history. Which era do you consider the most effective period in the whole history of the genre?
Right now. With technology advancing at an exponential rate, future engineers and scientists are watching and reading about their next big projects. All while seeing their idols doing the exact same thing all because of the resources we have at our fingertips.

Q.13 In many science fictions stories, the existence of God is denied. Could we call science fiction an atheist literary genre?
That’s not true. At least in my eyes, it’s not. Science fiction just depicts a futuristic world. That doesn’t mean God is dead. God is many things and takes on many faces. People live to die and go on to some kind of afterlife that is home to their deity. Whoever that may be is up to the beholder. God has many names and is followed by millions whether it is God, Allah, or another deity with another name made by an author, religion is one thing that will never be denied.

Q.14 Who designed your book cover? How did you select them?
A. My book designer actually lives in Sweden. I found him from a Facebook group when I first started writing.

Q.15 Do you have any unique and quirky writing habits?
I have a system of summaries I write out before even bringing myself to the computer to type. Once the summaries of the book are done, I edit. Then move on to drafting, then edit. Once that is done, I finally move myself to the computer and begin the actual story.

Q.16 How do you select the name of your characters?
Something that jingles, but enough to be realistic and rememberable. My main character is Carson Paul. It’s strong, quick with the tongue, and easily remembered.

Q.17 How long does it take you to write a book on average?
A. For my first book it took about six months of planning, and almost another year to write and edit it.

Q.18 What was the most challenging part of writing this book?
A. The most challenging part of writing the book was editing. In theory, I had to learn to be my old English teacher and really push myself to learn proper grammar and punctuation. These skills that I now use have followed me into the sequel. My writing has dramatically improved and my editing skills have made going through the book simpler and more efficient.

Q.19 What is your favorite book and why?
A. Red Rising by Peirce Brown. Why? Because ever since I had this epiphany to begin reading for enjoyment, his books are the reasons I fell in love with them.

Q.20 Share the experience of your writing journey so far?
Being an indie writer is tough. I have many regrets, I have many downfalls, many rewrites, many many many mistakes. But, I am still here standing on both my feet, aiming for the stars. Because that’s where I’ll be one day. And when I am there, my hand will be stretched out hoping other aspiring writers grab on to me so I can pull them up with me.

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