Friday, 17 August 2012
Author Interview with Suzanne Van Rooyen
Title: Dragon's Teeth
Author: Suzanne Van Rooyen
Publisher: Divertir Publishing
Published: November 1, 2011
Length: 282 pages
Available From: Amazon Barnes & Noble
You can never outrun your past...
After years of war ravage the globe and decimate humanity, civilization is revitalized in the city of New Arcadia, a cybernetic playground where longevity treatments promise near immortality.Detective Cyrus, fond of fedoras and narcotics, is hired by Benji MacDowell, heir-apparent to an eugenics empire, to find MacDowell's long-lost biological father.
Employing his network of shady contacts within the underbelly of the city, Cyrus uncovers a murderous web of corporate corruption and political conspiracy with ties to the old Order, a tyrannical organization whose sole intent was perfecting the next generation of genetically engineered soldiers.
Now Cyrus knows too much and finds himself caught in the cross-hairs of super-soldier assassins while the dark secrets of his past snap at his heels, forcing him to confront the truth he's been running from... and discover his own terrifying purpose.
About the Author:
Suzanne grew up in the urban sprawl of Johannesburg, South Africa where she studied music and penned a few angsty poems. After a brief stint in Australia, Suzanne settled in Finland where she completed a Master's degree in music and started writing in earnest.
Suzanne now works as a freelance writer, author and part-time dance teacher. Her short stories have appeared in Golden Visions Magazine, Cast of Wonders, and Earthbound Fiction among others. When not writing she strums away at her guitar and entertains her shiba inu, Lego.
When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?
I've always loved writing and reading and the art of storytelling but I never really wanted to become a writer. I wanted to be a marine biologist or quantum physicist, a concert flutist or chemical engineer - never a writer. It's only really been in the past year that I realised writing made me happy and made me feel complete the way nothing else ever had. I think it's taken me all these years and life on three continents for me to realise where my passion and hopefully a modicum of talent lies: in words.
Tell us about Cyrus.
Cyrus is complicated to say the least. He's a walking anachronism, fond of vintage fedoras and strong coffee, wishing he'd been born a character in a Raymond Chandler novel. There's a lot more to him than meets than eye with Cyrus, he's got quite a history and a violent one at that, which definitely colours the way he sees the world. Despite his past, he maintains a self-deprecating sense of humour and strong work ethic. Cyrus lives in the grey area between doing what's right and doing what's legal, very much following his own moral compass.
What was your favorite scene to write in Dragon's Teeth?
Just one? That's tough. I really enjoyed the military scenes and fight scenes although they were challenging in terms of accuracy. I enjoyed the bar scene with Cyrus and Cleo perhaps the most. I love world-building and describing that tech-noir underground club world was lots of fun.
What do you feel is the hardest part of writing?
Distilling the amazing idea in your head into words and syntax. That's definitely the hardest part. Nothing will ever sound as good on paper as it does in your head. I hate that and still struggle with this but I'm learning to let go and give the words some breathing room.
Is there someone in your life who inspired you to write? Was there another author or a teacher who encouraged you?
My mom encouraged me to read and to write from a very young age, often writing out stories I dictated to her. I had a teacher in grade 8 that encouraged me to try and publish a short story I wrote in class. I didn't get very far then but the idea of being published never left me. Since then, I've been inspired by a number of people and life experiences so it's hard to choose just one. My fiancee and best friend, Mark, encourages me on a daily basis - he's my number one fan, technical adviser and the first person to read the rough draft of a story.
How would you describe yourself?
A new soul stumbling through this world in awe of both the beauty and brutality we humans are capable of. I like to think I'm a pretty easy going person with a passion for art, music and film, and of course literature. I'm a the-glass-is-almost-empty-so-give-me-a-refill kind of person.
What do you do to unwind and relax? Go for long walks with my dog, Lego. I try to go swimming or cycling or ice skating depending on the season. My guitar usually bears the brunt of my frustrations - nothing beats strumming out some rock tunes at the end of a rough day.
What book are you reading now?
I just finished Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor and now I'm reading Ink by Isabelle Rowan - tattoos and vampires, how could I resist?
Connect with Suzanne: