Today The Realms of Imagination is featuring:
Ultimate Duty by Marva Dasef
Let’s start by telling the reader’s a little bit about yourself.
How long have you been writing?
I lot of writers answer "my whole life." I doubt that. At least, I didn't come out of the womb with pen and paper in hand. Would have been interesting if I did.
What's your writing schedule like?
Being retired, I write when I feel like it. When I am working on something new, I treat it like a job with comfortable working hours and long lunches. In other words, I write every day for some number of hours, but I don't set a daily goal of any kind. The only time I did that was in a Nanowrimo a few years ago. That 50K ended up as a 38K kid's adventure, which I self-pubbed.
Do you plot out your stories before you write or do you just work it out as you go along?
I have been known to write fairly long outlined summaries. Most often, I stray from the outline and become a pantser instead of a plotter.
When did you first know you wanted to become a writer?
I didn't write fiction except as assignments through school. A Creative Writing course in college got me to thinking. But those thoughts were put aside as I focused on technical writing, which made me plenty of money over the years. I did write a couple of short stories, but never pursued publication. When I retired I dragged out the few stories I had written to see if they were worth salvaging. One of those stories was "Pressure Drill." I rewrote a bit and sent it out. It was published not once, but twice. I liked the character and wrote another story about her. This also sold. Eventually I added enough to make it a novella titled "First Duty." It was published by Sam's Dot Publishing in 2008. When the contract expired, I decided to not renew it (it's still being sold at The Genre Mall) because I was thinking of a lot of good stuff to add including a few steamy love scenes. That made it adult reading. I then sold it to Eternal Press, and here we are now with the new and improved "Ultimate Duty."
Were you a science fiction lover from way back or was this a genre you only recently turned your talents to?
SF is my first choice in reading, although I enjoy fantasy and paranormal as well. When I was 15 or so, a friend of my brother's gave me a copy of "Stranger in a Strange Land." I was hooked, lined, and sinkered.
What other genre/genres would you love to write/dabble in, given the choice?
I've written just about every genre already. I found some genres I won't write, like women's literature. To be honest, I have no idea what "women" want to read as far as contemporary non-genre books. They bore me, so I couldn't write one if I tried. I'm dallying with the idea of steampunk, but I'd have to read a lot more before I'd feel confident.
So, what's up next?
A mystery/suspense novella titled "Missing, Assumed Dead" is scheduled for July 2011 from MuseItUp. MuseItUp also bought the first book in a middle-grade fantasy series about a witch who can't spell right. It's titled "Bad Spelling" (get it?) and is scheduled for October 2011. They also have books 2 and 3 and I'm hoping they'll take the entire series.
I have some ideas for a sequel to "Ultimate Duty" and another book in the Witch series. My beta readers have clamored for a follow up starring the witch girl's brother, a half-vamp, half-warlock smartass with huge magical talent. You can guess the sibling rivalry there.
Remy Belieux, a woman born into a life of servitude on a repressive factory planet, is desperate for a different life. When she's accepted into the Space Service Academy, run by the organization that enslaves her planet, she discovers the truth behind generations of rebellion. Now, she must decide what to believe, where her ultimate duty lies, and fight for more than her life against impossible odds.
Remy and Garrett arrived at the outer wall path that led to the dock ports. Remy hoped at least one shuttle was still attached to the station. She dropped to the floor and peered down the slope of the passageway. Two guards stood at the entrance to bay 5. Luckily, they faced the opposite direction. Remy slid back and pointed silently, then held up two fingers. Garrett nodded and pointed left and then at himself. Remy nodded.
With no way to get any closer unseen, they must use speed instead. Both stepped back a couple of paces, so they’d hit the corner at full tilt. A nod from Garrett, and they sprinted through the twenty meters separating them from the guards. One guard turned to look only when Remy and Garrett were close enough to attack. The guard yelled, "Halt!" as he raised the barrel of his blaster. The second guard turned with a confused expression and didn’t manage to raise his own weapon before Remy reached him.
Remy felt her mind and body slip into fighting mode. Time slowed for her, and she noted every detail of the guard’s stance. She leaped high in the air, her legs coiled like springs. The second guard finally lifted his rifle but never had the chance to fire. Remy drove both feet into his abdomen, slamming him against the wall with the force of her strike. In the low gravity she landed easily on her feet crouched and ready. She crossed her arms against her torso, grabbing the guard’s belt with her left hand and prepared to strike with her right. The man’s eyes widened when Remy’s backhand arced toward him. The force of the blow across his jaw sent him tumbling to the floor.