Rich Brousseau is a huge fan of fantasy and science fiction and is able to totally immerse himself into whatever world the subject matter is focused upon. Computer gaming unleashed his imagination like nothing else he has experienced before. He is always asking the question "why", and searching for an answer.
Literary Juice: You have written the book, Battle for Honor: Gates, as a father-son team. What was your driving inspiration for teaming up on this book?
Rich: I have had this book idea bouncing around in my head for years. Once I started it I realized I was going to need some help. I asked Ryan for his thoughts one day, and I was so impressed with what he did I knew it would be a great match. Besides, what father wouldn't want to have his son working by his side?
Ryan: At first I was apprehensive about writing a book and it seemed like a very daunting task, so I started out slow with just giving suggestions here and there. But once I got into it, I found that I had numerous ideas floating around and was eager to advance the story. Overall, it was a great experience and I learned a lot from the process.
LJ: What was the writing process like for this book? How did you contribute to the book respectively?
Rich: I think of myself as the idea man, the one with the off-the-wall thoughts. I get the chance to write what I’m thinking about and Ryan applies the color and polish. After that, we pass the updates back and forth between each other until we have something we like.
Ryan: It was a pretty straightforward formula for Gates, since my father had most of the core of the book written; it just needed that extra added dimension to it, which is where I came in. Basically he would get the ideas on paper then forward it over to me; I would touch them up, reword and rework the chapters while adding that extra depth to them. This process may change a little for book two, but so far it has been a successful formula for us.
LJ: Did you face any challenges when writing this book? For example, were there any disagreements regarding the direction of the story, the disposition of certain characters, or possibly even differences in writing style, etc.? How did you overcome these challenges?
Rich: I can’t say we agreed on everything. We will often discuss the direction we want to go with a character, and at some point we agree. I think it is very helpful that both of us are open-minded, willing to listen to the other, and adjust to make a better story. I like to think we respect each other and value a different opinion. I've never had to pull the “because I’m your father” line.
Ryan: Of course there were disagreements throughout the writing and editing process, but it was always with the sole purpose of giving more life to our novel. Our writing styles are definitely different but I feel that they've evolved for the better throughout the creation of Gates. Also, every discussion we had regarding the book was productive, and bottom line is, our end goal was the same: put the best novel out there we can. The key for us is to maintain an open mind and just ask ourselves, “How does it advance our story?”
LJ: Battle for Honor has received outstanding praise on Amazon. What aspect of this book do you believe is most appealing for readers?
Rich: I like to think that the readers see there is more to this story than a simple fantasy adventure. We tried to make the characters have a bit more depth, and not just a cookie cutter of what people expect. The story takes a few turns that are not expected, and there is room for each character to evolve, some for the better, some not so much.
Ryan: I feel that Battle for Honor is not your run-of-the-mill fantasy novel and there are many aspects of the book that many people will find appealing. We have a lot of the same characters that many other novels have but we don’t necessarily use them in the traditional sense, which is very unconventional for this genre. Also, the novel gives the reader the ability to make their own judgments in regards to the characters' life choices, good or bad. But in my opinion, the best comment I've read in one of the reviews was that it was unpredictable. To me that is very important in the entertainment field, whether it’s reading or watching a movie/TV show.
LJ: Are you currently working on a sequel? If so, when can readers expect it to be available?
Rich: The sequel is being written now. It continues some time after the end of Gates and many of the same characters will be returning. We are hoping to have the sequel available spring/summer of 2014, with the final of the trilogy late that year or early next.
Ryan: Yes, we are working hard on the sequel and we are shooting for a late spring, early summer of 2014 release. Look for the return of some of the characters with the addition [of] new ones. Be sure to check out our website, rjbrousseau.com for updates and possibly a new section titled The Lost Chapters, which will be an evolving section of short side stories that further expand on the storyline.
LJ: Are there any authors—past or present—who have greatly inspired you as a writer? Who?
Rich: I really like Dan Brown’s stories and his writing style. Beyond that, Tolkien, Heinlein, Herbert, Clarke, Asimov. Do you see a pattern?
Ryan: I am a huge fan of Dan Brown’s writing style and Michael Crichton’s technical detail. Other than that, I enjoy Stephen King, Brian Rathbone, Harlan Coben, and of course Tolkien. Lately, though, I've been reading a lot of indie authors via Wattpad and Goodreads.
LJ: What advice would you give writers who are considering teaming up on a book?
Rich: Be open to ideas that are not your own. Respect the opinion of your co-author. You are both trying to create something to be proud to call your own.
Ryan: Determination and open-mindedness will [be] the key to your success; your opinion is not always the right one. Above all else though, make sure you are proud of your work and make it a true representation of yourself.
Fiction by RYAN & RICH BROUSSEAU
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1492160083
Paperback: 331pp; Kindle-$2.99; Paperback-$13.34
About this Book: Three thousand years ago, Agora was brought to the brink of annihilation by the Third Great War. Since then, all has remained peaceful, until now. Challenges present themselves daily and their response is paramount to survival. Marcus awakens in a world he does not know. Possessing the skills of a seasoned warrior with the ability to unleash devastating magic, he ventures into the unknown to discover himself, the world and answers to the mysteries surrounding him. Who are these Guardians guiding him on this life’s mission? What do the Gods want?...