Tag Archives: Fantasy

And one thing leads to another.

So, today. Yeah, today. I was in a foul mood almost all of the hours since my mind awoke from what can only be described as a disturbing dream. And so it followed that I was in foul humour all day long. Yes, America, humour with a U. Deal with it!

Anywhoooo. I spent all day doubting my writing; doubting my choice at turning aside from the mundane but financially secure world of ‘work.’ I picked up my copy of Fastian and even scoffed at it. Yes, I scoffed. I opened my notebook and started flicking through some scribbles and ideas I have gathered together over the years and scowled at the absolute idiocy of some of them. My day gradually began to get worse. Continue reading

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New Fantasy and Sci-Fi Review Site

About a month ago I sent a tweet out into the universe, looking for people to review ‘Fastian’ for me. Luckily, I received a few replies and kind offers, and one of those was from Rachel Vaughan (twitter @bibliophony). She was on the verge of setting up a brand new website and I had the pleasure of being the first author to be interviewed and have ‘Fastian’ reviewed.

This is what Rachel had to say about Bibliophony.com

Bibliophony is a website designed to promote the success of quality writing, open the lines of communication between authors and their readers, and find creative ways to enhance the marketability of the science fiction/fantasy genre. Bibliophony is essentially a free online PR resource for authors and an entertaining information spot for readers. There are many promotional opportunities available for authors, as well as activities and events for readers to get involved in. Some of the features that you can expect to see on Bibliophony are book reviews, author readings and signings, author interviews, charity opportunities, giveaways, an annual book drive, unique contests, discussion forums, writing challenges, a humor section, activities for kids, and generally a lot of fun.

I want to wish her all the best and thank her for allowing me to help promote ‘Fastian,’ also.

So, why don’t you guys drop on by and check out the gorgeous new website.
You can read the review of ‘Fastian’ here

And the interview I did for Bibliophony here

‘Old School’ Interview

I’m from a small town; a village in fact. Having been raised here, gone to school here, and after many years away, returning here, it remains an undeniable fact that if someone from here achieves anything of any note, it is usually celebrated and everyone knows about it.

This is neither a bad thing nor a good thing. It just is what it is. I am happy to embrace it.

And so, while everyone where I’m from knows I have written and published my first novel, I am constantly asked how the writing is going, how are the sales, when is the next book? Or (and this is something I relish) stopping me to tell me how much they enjoyed Fastian. I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of being told that someone enjoyed a piece of work I put so much effort into. I love it.

But when I got approached by one of the teenagers from my old school asking me could I do an interview for the school magazine, that was an extra piece of self-gratification that I wasn’t expecting. However, when I was twenty I worked for this teenager’s dad in the local pub and she was three years old running around the place. I was sadly reminded that I am now getting ‘old.’

Still, at least I’m alive, huh?

Below is that interview.

The Write Stuff
By Taira Lewis

Jason Finnerty is a past pupil of Clonaslee Vocational school; he is now an author writing under the pseudonym, Jay Finn. He sells his books online and has now started a fantasy series. He launched the first book of the series “Fastian: An Edgewier Tale” just before Christmas in the Heritage Centre in Clonaslee.

How did you start writing stories?
I first started (or attempted to start) when I was maybe 12 or 13 because I had read the Narnia books and just fell in love with them. It just clicked in my head that maybe I would like to write something like that but when I started writing properly it was about six or seven years ago. I started writing short stories and one of them got short-listed for an award and when it did I was thinking “Well maybe this is something I could do” so I just kept going from there!

What inspired your book Fastian?
I actually got the idea from the movie The Dark Knight, seeing the character of the joker I just had this idea of a character who was not exactly likeable but could still be kind of the good guy, someone who’s not a nice person but is like kind of the anti-hero. So it just started from there but over the years it developed into the book that it is now. There’s no set way about it, it just organically came together.

Did you know at first that it would be a trilogy?
Yeah, I knew it was going to be long, it might even be more than 3. I had this idea in my head that once I created this world, I could write the story and make it as long as I wanted and that was actually exciting because I wasn’t set to “it has to be in one book” because that’s just too narrow, especially with fantasy. Fantasy tends to be epic, for example George Martin, they’re all in lots of books, so I always knew it was going to be long. It could be four or five books now.

Do you think that literature has been diminished by television and internet?
I’m not sure, maybe in a way. The idea of holding a book in your hand for a lot of people isn’t the same because now you’ve got kindles and things like that, so maybe not literature itself but how we purchase literature and how perceive it is maybe a bit different. And it’s at a stage now where almost every second movie is based on a book so a lot of people tend to watch the movie before they read the book and that annoys me… A lot! People are like “Oh yeah I’ve watched this movie, now I’ll read the book”. No, read the book first! When you watch a movie you have the characters in your head already, so when you’re reading the book it’s not your own imagination that’s creating them in your head – it’s what you’ve seen in the film, and that just annoys me.

Would you like your books to be made into films?
Yeah, that’d be really cool but I think it would work better as an animation. Most fantasy movies are woeful! (Well, apart from Lord of the Rings.) I’d like to see it done in an animation because you can do so much with animation now and you don’t have to worry about making a movie with special effects and stuff. So yeah, I would like to see that someday

What advice would you give to student hoping to become a writer?
Read a lot and write a lot, it’s that simple! You can’t become a writer unless you read, the same way you can’t be a carpenter if you haven’t got a saw. Read everything, don’t just read one genre, read as much as you can and read constantly. I could read fifty, sixty or seventy books in a year. It’s like practise, when you see other people’s styles and see how other people write stories, you will understand plot and characters, themes. You can not become a writer unless you read and once you read you have to write a lot. You don’t have to sit down and say “Ok, I’m going to write a book” and just concentrate on that. Write short stories. Take a month and tell yourself everyday you’re going to write a 2000 word short story. 29 of them could be terrible but you can have one gem. Don’t think about it too much, especially when you are writing short stories. Just give yourself a premise “A man walks into the store and trips over the step” and just work from there! Just something small like that or you could make it as outlandish as you want either. Just read a lot and write a lot!

Were you a good student in school?
I wasn’t bad as in badly behaved but I was lazy. I did all pass subjects for my leaving cert. I was doing honours English right up until two months before the exams. I didn’t want to go to college, I had no interest in education because I didn’t really like school. It’s not that I wasn’t smart, I just had no interest. I liked stuff like history though. So, I wasn’t bad, I was just lazy because I just had no real interest in being there and didn’t want to go to college (even though I did go to college later on). I started travelling once I finished school. So yeah, not a bad student, just lazy!

When do you think the series will be finished?
Well I hope to have the second book out by next Christmas. (Fingers crossed!) I’m working on another book at the minute, it’s just kind of a contemporary fiction which I’m going to try get published the “old-school” way, get it done through a normal publisher. The thing with fantasy is, it’s hard to get it published as it’s such a huge market so that’s why I did the whole self-publishing thing, plus I wanted to see a book with my name on it! So, over-all finished I don’t know. Hopefully in the next 4 or 5 years I’d like to have the entire tale told but we’ll see what happens!

Where are your books available?
Online mainly, any major online store; Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Sony, I-store. Just search Fastian or Jay Finn and you should them (and it’s not expensive!)

Can I say I’m a bestseller now?

As an independent author, huge marketing budgets and campaigns are a thing we can only look on in envy at. These belong to the ‘published’ authors who have managed to snag a five book deal with a six figure signing on fee. (No bitterness … well maybe just a little).

We rely on three things in my opinion. People willing to take a chance with their hard earned money, word of mouth, and most importantly, a damned well written novel. Continue reading

The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Neil Gaiman: Yeah, he’s alright.

Had you asked me what I thought of Neil Gaiman a few weeks ago, that would have been my response. I’ve read American Gods and Neverwhere and other novels he has penned, and they are good (don’t get me wrong), but they never stirred in me such excitement and fervour that he seems to illicit from many thousands of people across the globe.

One author who does stir such in me is Patrick Rothfuss, and if you know anything about Patrick, is that he idolises Mr. Gaiman. I’ve never understood it.

Until now, maybe.

I picked up ‘The Ocean at the End of the Lane’ more out of a need for something new to read rather than it being the next Neil Gaiman novel, and I had to have it. To say I was pleasantly surprised is somewhat of an understatement. In fact, that I’m here writing this post at this moment shows just how impressed and blown over by this novel I am.

It is a masterpiece. And I don’t say that lightly.

Sure, it has all the odd surreal qualities that I never quite understood from his other books, but it is wrapped up in the absolute beauty, innocence, confusion and frustration that it is to be seven years old.

In essence, this book is a fairytale about a boy, written for adults. Let me say that again, this is not a book for children. I think only those of us old enough to look back at being seven years old as a lifetime ago will truly get the majesty of the prose. I could be wrong, but for me, it is the narrators recollections of being seven that is the true beauty of this tale and not the other-wordly magic and adventure that our protagonist gets caught up in.

It is a short read. Easily a book that can be devoured in a day, and might I suggest you read this book in one sitting for I think it will resonate all the better for doing so.

I read constantly. And in my many years as an avid reader I have read thousands of books. Of them, some are good, some are okay and a few have been downright terrible. Some have been great and a tiny fraction have been immense. The Lord of the Rings, The Name of the Wind, The Stand, The Long Walk, To Kill a Mockingbird, Wuthering Heights, Huckleberry Finn, The Faraway Tree, The Chronicles of Narnia, Conversations with God: All of these are in my all time favourite books that have had an affect on me (at various stages of life and for various different reasons) that goes beyond just reading a good story.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane has made it onto that list. I’m sorry for underestimating you Mr. Gaiman.

Fastian, Free Chapters!!

Firstly, my apologies for the lengthy absence of updates on here. I know, I know. I should be making more of an effort to post a few times a week, but I find when I’m writing (that is, working on my novel) that it’s quite difficult to separate myself from my fiction brain to bring you something of the witty and non-fiction. Continue reading

Kindle or ‘real-life-in-your-hands-book’

Yes, kindle and e-readers of all kinds have been nothing short of a Reading Revolution. Yes, I heard what I just said. A REVOLUTION!

Hundreds of books on one little digital tablet! Surely this is one of the greatest inventions for all you book lovers out there.

Except, in a lot of cases, it’s not.

The feel of a book in your hands (especially those 700+ page epics); the smell of the new pages; the perfect smoothness and matte finish of a straight-off-the-shelf book. I don’t think there is anything better.

And so, in saying that, I am coming close to having all of my hard copies of ‘Fastian’ gone. I have roughly twenty of them left and they need a good home! I will post them to anyone wishing to purchase one. And why wouldn’t you want one? Only 250 were printed and if (when) one day, global success comes my way, you will be in the possession of something very rare indeed.

My email is coshure96@gmail.com or you can tweet me @jayfinn32 for any details or questions. Go on, what’s the worst that could happen?unnamed