I’d like to introduce Arshad, talking about his book, Sunset.
Arshad Ahsanuddin is a practicing hematopathologist, a physician who specializes in using biopsies and laboratory data to diagnose diseases of blood, bone marrow, and lymph nodes, such as leukemia and lymphoma. Yes, a blood doctor writing about vampires. The irony is not lost on him. It certainly amuses his colleagues.
Los Angeles, 2040. The terrorist Medusa and her followers threaten to destroy the metropolis with a nuclear bomb. One individual, the vampire Nicholas Jameson, comes forward to oppose them. As Nick takes on the terrorists, the fragile peace between the races hangs perilously in the balance as the supernatural peoples are exposed. Can Nick lead the four races into peaceful coexistence, or will the final war destroy them all?
With millennia-old magic, emerging romance, and ever-shifting allegiances, this inventive new series unveils a scintillating, homoerotic world of Nightwalkers, Daywalkers, Sentinels, and Humans, who battle for world dominance in the not-too-distant future.
Can you tell us a little bit about your book?
Sunset is a paranormal romance/urban fantasy set in the near future, based on a simple premise: Suppose vampires and vampire slayers had been killing each other in the shadows of the world for millennia, without anyone being the wiser. What would happen if they were suddenly exposed on national television? How would the world change, especially if they were operating from a position of strength? Would we be able to coexist with them, or would war become inevitable? Sunset begins with the exposure of the supernatural peoples before the world, and takes off from there. As a subplot, it explores the main character’s complicated love life.
What about this story made you have to write it?
I originally came up with the story about ten years ago, back in theBuffy/Angel heyday. Then the pendulum swung back and vampires became popular again, and it made me think of the story. I had always planned to write a novel, so I thought writing out my hobby story might be good practice. Since then, it took on a life of its own. I have always been excited by fantasy since I read the Hobbit as a kid, lo, these many years ago. The dark fantasy elements and the occult began to appeal to me when I discovered Lovecraft in college. The vampire mythos interested me after I began reading Anne Rice around the same time. But what really fired my imagination was the comic book Sandman by Neil Gaiman, which I collected religiously from the first issue to the end of its print run.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned during the creation of this book?
Writing is easy compared to editing, and a darn sight easier than self-promotion.
What was the hardest part to write?
I have the most trouble with setting and characterization. Those aspects are part of my intuitive understanding of the scene and its characters, so it doesn’t come naturally to have to write those aspects down. Without them, however, the scene seems flat to people who lack my particular intimate knowledge.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
Listening to music and playing computer role-playing games. I’m quite looking forward to Skyrim: Elder Scrolls 3 next month. Also, I’m a highly-specialized physician with a busy hospital-based hematopathology practice.
Can you share a little of what you are working on now?
I am currently working on Starlight, the fourth novel of the Pact Arcanum series. Once it’s edited and proofread, I’ll have it formatted and ready for distribution. I estimate a release date of next February, give or take a month.
What advice would you give a new writer?
1. Don’t give up. You’re the best advocate of your work. If you believe that your writing sucks, who will you be able to convince that it’s worth reading?
2. Don’t think you’re an expert. Listen on author’s groups, read about the craft of writing, and soak up the experience of those who have been in the game longer than you. Better to stand on the shoulders of giants than to strike out entirely on your own and unprepared.
For more information about Arshad, or for more information about the series, check out his website at www.pactarcanum.com and leave him some feedback.
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/pactarcanum
Twitter Profile: http://twitter.com/pactarcanum
Kindle version: http://www.amazon.com/Sunset-Pact-Arcanum-ebook/dp/B005SIXXB2
Smashwords edition (multiple formats): http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/61128
Video Trailer: http://youtu.be/zdvchNFqSu4