The Author Spotlight series featured on this blog showcases writers and their work. Writing can be a fulfilling but lonely journey - so why not have some fun and make a few friends along the way? Let’s get to know Dan Cole (@Icedan_HDH):
What inspired you to start writing?
I have lots of ideas that I think others would enjoy. I've been reading my whole life, and love the idea of joining the ranks of story tellers. Lani and her world was heavily inspired by Avatar: The Last Airbender and Samurai Jack, I wanted it to be full of action, but relatable and cool characters and have a real sense of history.
What are common traps/mistakes for aspiring writers?
Common traps/mistakes I think would be for people to think that the only way to become a published author is to have an agent or "sell" your work. I am still trying to do that with another work, but people enjoy Lani even after self-publishing.
What is something you loved but had to edit out of this book that was like sawing off a limb (isn’t writing fun)?
There wasn't really anything I took out that I was in love with. The story has changed dramatically from inception. It started as the story of the old man, the Wanderer, when he was younger, but I drastically changed it to take place at a later time, and his story became history of the world.
Tell us a little bit about your story and what inspired you to write "Lani".
Lani lives in a fantastical world that is controlled by fear. The "bad guys" won a long time ago, the world has no moon, and orcs and goblins live among the humans and Primals (humanoid animals). Lani lives in one of the "Great Cities" and hates it. She does not feel fear like everyone else, and feels cloistered and has no freedoms. She finally makes a plan to leave the city with her Minotaur bodyguard, Brutus, and the two try to survive in the Wilds. They soon meet other people to help them, including a young warrior woman named Kas, and an ancient Samurai called the Wanderer. Death follows wherever they go, and soon they are on the run. Lani learns of her world, it's true history, and herself all while trying to survive.
If you had to describe the main character in three words, what would those three words be?
Fierce, strong, excitable.
How can we purchase your book?