Science Fiction has always been a love of mine. I love the adventure of new worlds and people. My guest is Amazon Bestseller, Alex Cavanaugh, and he's written a sci-fi trilogy which has given me hours of pleasure. His latest, CassaStorm, in my opinion, is his best. His characters are well drawn and the story has emotional depth and I like the touch of darkness and danger of the story. Well worth the read. Recently, I had a chance to chat a bit with Alex.
I don’t think it’s a secret that I grew up in a household with seven brothers. We all had great imaginations and fun stories to create and act out. I know that spinning adventures where my brothers were heroes who saved the day and against all odds was a favorite.
- I imagine the exploits of an intrepid fighter pilot would be a great adventure—especially in a place far removed from the restrictions of the world you lived in—not to mention being out of the reach of parental restrictions. Was this something that drew you, as a teen, to this world of Byron's?
Hey, doesn't that sound enticing to you? I've never been the adventurous sort—I have this thing about safety—but the idea of flying a space fighter in my imagination was awesome. There were a lot of adventures with Byron—and Bassa—that I created. And out there, anything could happen.
It was very enticing to the teen me. I wouldn't say no to such an adventure now, Alex, providing I was safe.
- Are you surprised with how your fighter pilot has grown and changed?
I could see beyond the end of CassaStar to a time when he’d meet Athee, but not the growth he experienced over three books.
- What would you say was the biggest change you've seen in Byron?
His biggest change was in his willingness to trust and really care about others. Byron liked to do things solo and he didn't want to admit he needed anyone. [Another change was Byron] also lost the edge to his temper.
- What do you like and respect about Byron?
What I admire is his ability to command and take control of a situation. He fights for what is right and works harder than anyone.
- I like how your latest story explores the roots of the races inhabiting your world. There are a lot of frontiers yet to explore in this world you've created. You mentioned you’re working on another space opera idea. Is it set in this same world?
I have an outline for another space opera – whether I’ll ever write it is another story! (So many things happening in my life right now.) It’s not set in the Cassan universe though. It would be a whole new world, with new races, new planets, new wars…
I’m ready and willing to read it. Not that I’m exerting any pressure or anything, lol!
- You've come a long way from the teen that once wrote a story of a fighter pilot set in a galaxy far from ours. As you look back, what was the biggest surprise that occurred while you were writing this series?
Biggest surprise? That I was actually writing a series! I never planned three books.
Within the stories though, the biggest surprise was the character of Piten in the third book. He was such a minor character; he originally didn't even have a name. A suggestion from a critique partner (who saw the outline before I wrote the book) led to character who played a pivotal role in the ending.
- If you could choose the music theme for CassaStorm, what would it be? What song would you use?
The theme music would be Daft Punk’s Recognizer from the Tron: Legacy soundtrack. I’m not much for soundtracks, but my wife loves that one, so I heard it a lot when writing. The ominous feel, along with the rise in tempo, echo the tone of CassaStorm.
Tron has a great soundtrack. I like several from Legacy—End Of The Line and the Recognizer are favorites of mine. I can see Recognizer as the theme for CassaStorm.
- Speaking of music. You once told me that you play music every evening as a way to relax after the stresses of the day. So how did this move from an escape and relaxation to a band?
I've been a musician most of my life, but always wanted to try guitar. After several years of practicing, I was asked to join a band through church. It’s been very rewarding!
- I know you play rock, but is your band a Christian rock band or does the band play music at local venues for entertainment? Give me a couple of songs that your band really likes to play?
We play at Christian venues and churches, and sometimes for the youth. We’ll play Christian standards like God of Wonders (by Third Day) and Nothing is Impossible (by Planetshakers.) Sometimes we’ll play secular music by bands such as U2. We do all covers, so we haven’t recorded anything yet.
- You’re a very creative person—you design graphics and do web design, you write, you play music. All parts of a creative mind. Do these creative endeavors feed each other or are they something you have to juggle—shut the door on one to let the other have the spotlight.
- Any words of hard earned wisdom you’d like to share?
If you’re just starting on this journey, prepare for an amazing ride. It will take you places you never imagined and some that might scare you. Embrace it all. Become the author and the person you were meant to be.
- Alex, it's always a pleasure to chat with you! Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to visit with us today.
From the Amazon Best Selling Series!
A storm gathers across the galaxy…
Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.
After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.
Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could return. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…EXCERPT
BUY: AMAZON, B&N, INDIEBOUND
Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The author of the Amazon bestsellers, CassaStar and CassaFire, he lives in the Carolinas with his wife.
You can find Alex:
Website – http://alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com/
Twitter – http://twitter.com/AlexJCavanaugh