Ty Langston's novel By Sunset, A Dragon Races Tale, will be published by LazyDayPublishing on December 1, 2010.
Tell us about By Sunset. What is it about and where will it be available?
The book is about two warring Royal Families that have entered a Dragon Race to retrieve a pair of pink and black diamonds.
Of course, this race isn't as simple as it seems. Without spoiling the story. Let's just say the reasons why both families decide to race makes will things very complicated for all involved.
What were your inspirations for By Sunset? What sorts of thing inspire you as a writer in general?
There's so many from different genres. One is George RR Martin. I just started reading A Song of Fire and Ice, I love Sherrilyn Kenyon, Stephen King, Anne McCaffery. I have some Lara Adrian on my TBR pile also. I've heard a lot of great things about her. I love Kresley Cole, Gena Showalter.
But because I studied Broadcast Journalism, I really do like a lot of tv and movie scribes, actually one of my favorite writers ever is Michael Hirst, creator of the Tudors and the upcoming Camelot and The Borgias series, he just mixes the right amount of history, sex and visual that is a feast for the eyes. I literally stop and I have to watch anything that he's involved in. Also the late John Hughes influenced me a lot. He had a way of telling a story that was very relateable on every level. When I write, I try to remember to do that. It's one of the things that I took from reading his scripts and watching his movies.
Michael taught me that history and or fantasy can be fresh and sexy. Anyone that can portray a young King Henry VIII and Charles Brandon like rock stars is ok in my book. :)
Let's talk about your process. How do you approach a story, do you start with outlines or something else? Where did you work when writing By Sunset? Do you think it was the optimal writing environment for you?
I do start with outlines. Since By Sunset is the first of a series, I did a broad outline of where I wanted to go with each book followed by smaller ones for each book. Do I follow it verbatim? No. I do change it as I go, but I do keep the main plot points so that the next book can pickup literally where the previous book ends.
I tend to work either in my family room (where I am now writing) or in my bedroom. Mostly I write in my bedroom. It's peaceful, serene, I have my stereo in there and just tune out everything. I'm one of these people that writes my stories out longhand before I type it into my laptop. I can write straight from my laptop, but because I write a lot in the evening. I always keep a notebook and pen on my nightstand along with something to drink and write until I go to bed.
Tell us about your "story of getting published."
I thank Twitter (@bedofroses2001) for that. I had seen an interview that Staci from Lazy Day (@LazyDayPub) had done and I told her that I liked it. We got to talking and she had been encouraging me to send something in.
I didn't really think that I had anything really ready for her at the time so I went back to this story that I had been sitting on and literally went through and changed 3/4 of it. I kept on writing, editing, polishing and then sent it to my Critique Partners, Jill and Carole. Who had already loved it.
But for some reason I just sat on it for over a month. I didn't submit it. I had everything done including a query letter, blurb, synopsis. I think i was too nervous. And all of sudden one day, I decided to do just one more read-through and sent it in. I had just gotten done from my day job when i got the 'call' and I had to do a double take at the e-mail. I really thought it was a rejection letter until I saw it said welcome to the Lazy Day Publishing Team. I was beyond thrilled.
I plan to do a lot of blog interviews, and go on a blog tour. Currently setting that up now along with doing some readings shortly.