J.W. Baccaro is the author of the Guardian Series and the Tree of Damnation. In his free time, he enjoys literature—fiction and non-fiction, playing electric guitar, and thinking how to intertwine his thoughts about the world’s myths, legends and distinct truths into his next novel. He is a lover of animals and loves to hear from his readers. Feel free to email him at firstname.lastname@example.org He lives in upstate NY with his wife Melissa, his son Alexander, his German Shepherd and his two cats.
Hi Jason! I’m really excited to talk to you today about your epic fantasy series Prophecy of the Guardian and what’s been going on with you since your books were first released. BTW, that is a great pic of you. I see Darshun! So speaking of Darshun, let’s get the ball rolling with your books.
Hi Cynthia. I’d like to begin with the words you once spoke about this series: “Not darkness, not light, perhaps something in between, and is claimed by the darkness...as theirs. Though being saved by the light, that which is saved must in turn save the world.” I’ve always loved how you put that. Now here’s a little synopsis one might read on the back of a book:
PROPHECY OF THE GUARDIAN: THE COMPLETE TRILOGY
Darshun Luthais has never experienced the Nasharin Frenzy—the unbending will to challenge a stronger opponent, no matter the cost. He doesn’t know what he will transform into, has never bonded with an elemental crystal and has never seen any of the unearthly creatures his father talks about. Even though he’s an infant in Nasharin years, his life consists of nothing but constant training, striving to unlock the sleeping power his so-called accursed race is born with.
But all that changes when he is pursued by a Dream Assassin in the dead of night. What he witnesses will forever change his outlook on life, and lead him on a quest seemingly impossible to complete.
Jason, It’s awesome that you remember those lines from my review…though I probably sounded like a dweeb. That’s what happens when I get totally lost in the fantasy world of a great series like Prophecy. Maybe there’s no shame when it’s well deserved. I read your books a few years ago when they were first released and when I wrote my reviews, I only hoped I could do them justice. Prophecy of the Guardian truly is a great epic fantasy!
Thank you Cynthia! It’s been some time since I talked about these books. As you know, the paperbacks were released in 2010 thru 2012. I’ve since “remastered” the trilogy (like we’re talking music, huh? 😊 ) in 2016 and released the series in ONE volume off Amazon.
To give your viewers a basic understanding of the series I’ll lead with a short synopsis:
PROPHECY OF THE GUARDIAN: THE COMPLETE TRILOGY begins with the return of warriors from a lost battle. Two of the remaining warriors are Mirabel and Seth, who are Nasharins, an ancient elemental race of warriors. Feared by the Dark, accursed by the Light, Nasharins are considered the most dangerous creatures on earth. Mirabel is charged with delivering the news of the king’s demise to the young prince of the kingdom and leading the way into the new, safer lands.
Along the way, Mirabel feels the overwhelming pull of another Nasharin, which should be impossible, as Seth and he are the only two left in the Earth realm. They settle the people in a secure area and then arrive at the place where the Nasharin’s pull is and find the Cullach (a boar-like humanoid race) who are preparing a ritual. A sacrifice is brought forth and laid upon the altar. There, nestled inside some rags lays an infant and the pull that he has been searching for.
Mirabel, with his element of Air and Seth, with his element of Earth, attack and slay the Cullach. They rescue the child, who Mirabel names Darshun. Mirabel fears the foretelling of a second great war is already on them and the little baby Darshun is the key to it all—The Guardian of the Prophecy and the four elemental crystals…
Darshun eventually grows into a young man, and he comes to learn that his element is fire. He is the only one who feels drawn to the magical crystals. The seldom seen and nearly forgotten Earth Wizard, Olchemy informs Darshun that he is the protector and guardian the ancient prophets spoke about—even if he has the accursed blood of the Nasharin race flowing through his veins.
With the ability to sense the crystals, the Wizard Olchemy devises a plan to obtain them before another sinister force claims them first. This force, if successful, plans on manipulating the crystals’ magic and using it to their own elements, plunging the world into chaos and darkness.
Accompanied by a small group of mostly Nasharin companions, the hunt is on to retrieve the long-lost crystals. Darshun encounters Aurora, the sole survivor of a now extinct people. He fears that the recent actions taken in the hunt for the crystals may have led to the destruction of Aurora’s people. With this feeling of guilt, accompanied by her untamable spirit, he falls in love for the first time and now resents the so-called Guardian of the Prophecy role.
As I said, it is an awesome series and I am really looking forward to re-reading now that it’s released as a trilogy!
Q. What was your inspiration to write this type of fantasy?
A. J.R.R. Tolkkien’s The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings novels. Once I finished them I remember feeling sad that the adventure was over. I decided to create my own world, my own characters and go on my own mental adventure. 😊
Big epic fantasy series have such great detail. I would think it would be difficult to keep track while writing.
Q. How did you develop the characters and their world?
A. Fragments at a time, I’d say. First, I put a lot of myself into our main character Darshun. But I think there’s a little of me in almost every character. Did you catch that? I said “almost.” I wouldn’t want to compare myself to some of the characters who commit such atrocious acts. 😊 But it’s a common thing I think, many writers like taking bits and pieces of themselves and creating characters.
The world developed little by little. First, I start with an idea, then gradually climb with it, see what works out and what doesn’t according to my liken. I’m no master world builder like the famous Tolkien or Goodkind, but after some editing, reediting, reediting again and constructive criticism I’m satisfied with this world I have spawned into existence. It becomes a part of you, like a friend, or maybe a mental place to visit when you’re sitting alone and just quietly minding your surroundings. I sometimes wonder if my characters are venturing through the wilderness when I gaze at a heavily wooded forest. I still often think I see Tolkien’s Dwarves from the Hobbit venturing through the trees too. 😊
I love the thought of that. I’ve dabbled with writing and what you create becomes a real part of you. It makes sense that your characters would have bits of you in them. The story lives because the characters are alive in it.
Q. Did you have a favorite character(s) and why?
A.Darshun AND Talvenya. I can’t give too much away, but I like them both so much because they are the two who develop the most. Where some characters are already “fully developed,” Darshun begins as a babe, you feel like you grow with him and learn with his experiences, the good and the bad.
Queen Talvenya we see…well I really can’t say anything about her because it would spoil it. Her evolution is fascinating. You just have to patiently read on to see the development unfold.
Thinking of those characters now makes me want to read it again even more! Giving characters life like that takes a lot of work and imagination.
Q. When taking on a writing project like an epic fantasy, how do you make time to write and zone in on that project?
A. It was easier back before I had my son, you know, more free time. Time is limited now, but I still find it.
Q. When you are not writing, what books and authors do you enjoy reading?
A. Tolkien, Terry Goodkind, Susan Cooper, Octavia Butler, Joey W. Hill, and watching Japanese Manga,
Q. Are there any writing projects, or anything that you are excited to talk about?
A. I’ve written another book titled “Tree of Damnation.” It takes place 50 years after the Prophecy stories end. It’s a lot darker and even contains strong sexual content. It’s a great story though, quite deep. I was heavily into Near-Death experiences and Quantum Physics at the time of writing it. Some parts of the story read like a vivid, trippy dream. Ha!
Also, my new book is scheduled to be out this coming October/November 2018 titled “BLOOD DREAM.” This one is different, takes place in modern times, it’s a sort of mystery/detective/paranormal/light horror kind of read, if that makes sense. 😀
Wow! That is an incredible cover! Tree of Damnation sounds great. You know I will be reading it!
And I will be watching for the release of your new book BLOOD DREAMS!
I really appreciate you answering my questions today for a guest post.
Before we say good bye, I would like to pick your brain for a little motivation.
Q. What do you say to another writer, especially to those struggling to write their story?
A. Write ANYTHING you want. Don’t fall into the trap of what’s trendy, what might sell, what might get you famous. If you have that passion to write, to transfer that world inside your mind onto paper (or computer screen, thank goodness for Kindles 😀 ) then go for it!
I’ll end with this:
Take a man who is proud of his creation, someone who, in the eyes of the rich, crawls beneath them. Although he never made it to the top or even halfway close, still, he pursued what his heart desired. Perhaps it is a musical piece—unpleasing to the common ear, but something special to him, or a mountain of literature, pleasing to his own heart, something he can be proud of knowing there will be some out there who will always hate it. You can’t please everyone, which is why I very VERY much dislike the trendy trap, or the just “go with what sells,” kind of thinking. I understand it’s a business, but at least keep your heart in it.
The thing you created, that you love is something no amount of time, number of dislikes or even likes can hold power over. You may not be the next J.K. Rowling, or catch that lucky break like Amanda Hocking, but it doesn’t matter. If you are content with your accomplishment, then you are truly free. No demon of emptiness will lurk in your heart once that fame quiets. When the fans stop screaming your name, when the silence now becomes the norm, and you are forgotten about, you can still remain happy knowing you are doing something that means a lot to you. You’ve created something you love and discovering that even ONE person out there was touched by your creation is a wonderful feeling, even ONE! So, in other words, people, FOLLOW YOUR HEART!
Thank you, Cynthia for this guest post.
And thank you all for reading.
Thank you Jason!
This was an awesome post and an inspiring message.
I am grateful to you for being my guest writer today.