1. Welcome, Noah, to Keturah's Korner! Can you start out by introducing yourself?
I'm Noah Barfield, which means presently, unless someone else is also me, I'm 17 years old. Oh, and also an aspiring author.
I'm currently traveling around these United States of America with my parents and a couple of younger brothers; we rent vacation homes and travel to a new place every few months or so. Because I don't think any of us could stand to live in an RV honestly.
And about me? I love reading books, but I don't really have any specific genre; just good books. I really like Christopher Paolini, J.K. Rowling, Edgar A. Poe and H.P. Lovecraft. Mark Twain and Mary Shelley are also pretty amazing.
Books tend to be my passion, which is why I like writing. But I also like good TV shows or movies; I like a few different anime (Japanese cartoons), more action/fantasy/thriller TV shows, but I'm a pretty big sap for a nice feel good movie, such as "Yes Man".
I'm a pretty big nerd and enjoy video games of the RPG variety whenever I have time; I'm actually a huge nerd in general. You name it, I'm probably really into it within the nerdvurse. Uhm, yeah. That's a bit about me.
Also, I never use emoticons; there is that.
2. What are some of your interests that are UNRELATED to writing :D?
Unrelated to writing? Well, I really like creating things; that's a huge reason why I like being an author. I can create an entire world with my fingertips and just play around with it and the characters.
But I also really like making up board and card games, creating music, comics and animations. I don't do those often because of my lack of drawing or general musical skill, and I'm only semi-adept at computer programming.
That doesn't stop me from trying though!
I have tons of ideas that if I didn’t express I feel like I would explode, so I feel I'm pretty fortunate to know so many amazing people that can help me realize my ideas whenever I don’t have the necessary skills to do so myself.
I also have a pretty big interest in just being active; I do Krav Maga (a self-defense technique), I go out hiking and urban exploring. And while I've crawled around storm drains and sewers with friends, I don't consider myself a "manly man".
Mostly because I don't understand cars or shelves at all.
3. How many novels or stories have you completed?
Well let's see there's one, two...a lot. I've successfully completed 2 novels and 3/4 of another. I did write a "book" when I was about eight, but it was only ten pages; I was able to sell a single copy though.
Since I love writing I tend to write a lot; a real problem I used to have was finishing things. Procrastination and not completing works used to be a pretty big issue actually; now I don't start something unless I know I can finish it.
I'd say that I've started dozens of short stories; most of them were actually pretty good but then I just lost interest. I’ve written around a dozen short stories that I’m actually pretty enthusiastic about, but only half of them have solid, definite endings.
Which isn't to say that I don't plan on finishing most of them! I have lots of things I'm working on, but my novel on Kickstarter, Legend Land, is currently taking up all my time.
4. Have you ever had something published? Even as small as an article or a poem.
If you want to count my ten page "book" when I was eight, then you could say I've published something. I think, haha, it really depends on what you define "published" as.
Have I been paid for writing things in the past? Yes; I've written an article or two for the cash monies that we need to be able to buy nice things. I've also put several stories up online to read, so that people can get a feel for my writing style; I've never had anything published by a publishing company.
So, I'm changing that! Because I realized that a few years ago and it really bothered me; it was driving me nuts that I could say I've been paid to write things, but that I've never had anything published by a publishing company. Cue Legend Land.
5. Tell us a little about your writing style :b.
It's...it's interesting, to say the least. I think it really depends on what I'm writing; I try to change the style based upon the work that I'm endeavoring to finish.
But I have had that whole "writing the same character under a different name" problem before, which can be extremely annoying. I'd say my writing style is pretty sardonic actually; if I'm not actively trying to come across as a certain way, it ends up being really sardonic and sarcastic. One might even, dare I say, think it was cheeky!
I also tend to write really seriously a fair amount of the time; books play like movies in my head, so I write it as I see it in my head. Which means I tend to include more details than the average writer, and I also tend to write some things like the book equivalent of a movie trailer. I did that for the intro of a story of mine once, and I'm going to be completely honest, I kinda went crazy over the idea.
It's something I really want to do more of in the future. My writing style is a little more sporadic because I can force myself to work, but I can't force myself to be creative. Which means my work always needs lots of editing; it also depends on the music I'm listening to and how I'm feeling.
I always start out writing a book linearly, from beginning to end, but I invariably end up writing specific scenes and sections that match my emotions at the time.
6. How did you discover that you wanted to become a published author?
I've always just wanted to write. I say it was probably in Kindergarten, while I was still in public school, whenever they gave us writing time; if we were writing, we didn't really do things like math. I'm not the biggest fan of math.
From then on, I just kept writing; I wrote two stories while I was in third grade. My first was ten pages, my second was forty-two; they just kept getting longer from there.
I've been actively trying to make it a career since I was twelve; that's when I attempted my first novel. Before that, I knew I wanted to do it as a career, but it wasn't something I was actively working towards.
I really got serious after I read Christopher Paolini's debut novel, "Eragon"; I read he was homeschooled and published by the time he was 19. So I was like, "I have to beat that." I think that's whenever I really started taking writing as something serious that I was definitely going to do for the rest of my life.
7. Can you tell us about your novel, Legend Land? Plot, approximate length?
Legend Land, my first novel I'm putting up to be professionally published, is a little complicated to explain; I've never, in my mind, been able to accurately surmise all that it is, either in spoken or written word. I always do my best to explain Legend Land, but I truly think it's impossible to do it justice; I know that may sound arrogant, but it's just the truth to me.
Basically, there's an alternate world ruled by the cosmic entity Death where legends and mythical creatures go to die; however, there are rumblings that other cosmic entities are playing a game for Legend Land too grand in scale to even fathom.
But that's kinda happening in the background; the real focus is on my three main characters, specifically my protagonist. I can't tell you too much about any of my characters, or else we'll be here all day, but I'll say that many of them can be originally found in fairy tales, myths, legends, etc.
Though I give 'em my own unique spin that makes them nearly unrecognizable from how they commonly appear. What I really think makes Legend Land unique is what it lacks; namely, a strong, linear storyline. By that, I mean the characters aren't riding on this plot line; they are the plot line.
The story unfolds piece by piece and then rapidly changes directions based upon the characters actions and goals. All the characters have their own goals and ambitions. Many of my characters aren't "good" or "bad" guys; they're all in this grey area, where it's difficult to see the line between the two.
Even my protagonist and antagonist, who oppose each other (and who you get to see the world from; both perspectives that is), both have heroic and villainous qualities.
Ultimately, along with a vibrant world and tons of twists and turns, plus the fairytale-retelling sort of vibe, what makes Legend Land unique is me writing emotionally detailed and complex characters that are written in such a way where the reader can decide who the hero and villain is.
As for word count, I know it's over 170,000 words, but less than 180,000; to put that in perspective, J.K. Rowling's fourth novel, The Goblet of Fire, is over 190,000 words long. So, it's not short.
8. What inspired you to write it?
While I was reading them, I would think to myself, "Wow, the movies aren't accurate about these characters at all.", or "This character is amazing! Why isn't there a movie about this one?".
So, I was originally inspired to write this book because I wanted to accurately portray these characters, and I just went from there. Over time, I added elements from more and more mythologies, more legends, more cultures and fairy tales, as well as introducing tons of my own, original characters.
And while Legend Land has grown from what it was originally conceived to be, I think I've done the original characters justice, even if I have twisted them to fit my storytelling needs.
9. What are your plans for this novel?
To get it published. That's the entire plan right now.
With a little more detail though, I want Legend Land to be the jumping point for not only a great series of books, but also my entire career. And yes, I fully plan on making Legend Land a series; I have a great amount of it planned out.
Whether that plan will be realized remains to be seen; life may get in the way, but I'm keeping all my limbs crossed.
As for Legend Land specifically, I would really like to see it published and in some major book stores; I want to be able to tote my book to libraries and book fairs.
My big plan with Legend Land is to set up a community around it; I want it to be a more interactive experience and for all the fans to be involved. Which is another thing; the plan is to have fans.
I don't want Legend Land to only be a novel, I want it to be part of people's lives. I would really like to see a Legend Land comic or graphic novel come to life, and even a more interactive side series where the fans and community play a big role in how the story develops.
10. How exactly can others help you achieve your goal?
Right now, the best way for others to help me make all this happen is to go to my Kickstarter and support me. Kickstarter is a place where I've put up my novel; not the actual novel, but I've announced it, and there people can go to contribute their precious monies towards helping make Legend Land a success!
I say "contribute" because they're not donating; whenever someone pledges money, they get rewards in return.
That means at certain amounts they'll get a first-edition copy of Legend Land, at others it might be signed; other rewards include things like phone calls from me, thank you videos, invitations to the launch party, handwritten letters and just a lot of really neat stuff for everyone to cherish, idolize or do whatever they want with it.
All my rewards come with a judgement free guarantee. If someone can't directly contribute, then the best way they can help is to tell everyone they know about it!
Tell 'em about the Kickstarter, spread the word about my awkward, energetic writer's corner YouTube videos and just let everyone know that this is, in fact, a thing they should be focusing on.
Other ways they can help is by doing videos of their own telling people about it, doing Q&A's or interviews with me, shout out videos or just shout outs on social media; anything they can think of, really.
Now beyond Kickstarter, once Legend Land is published...well, we'll get to that when we come to it. I'm really trying to build up a group of people who are interested in my novel now, that way I have a community that loves my work because it's amazing and they want to tell everyone else about it.
11. Why do you think the world should read your novel? ( basically, out of everything, why did you write THIS one ;b )
I didn't start out being super enthusiastic about Legend Land. I mean, I did; I was obsessed with it. Then I kinda drifted away from it; some sense was talked into me that it was actually a really good story, so I finished it and did my best to get it sent to an editing and publishing company, which I was actually successful at accomplishing.
I suppose the real reason I initially kept working on it was because of those people, especially my parents, who kept pressure on me to get it finished, but also supported me the entire time.
I think the reason people should read my novel...well, I want to say it's because I've put my heart and soul into that; that it's the culmination of all my life's work and that if they help make it happen, they help make a dream I've had my entire life come true.
But I don't think that's the reason people should read it; don't get me wrong, I think that's a definite reason they should check it out. It's everything I would ever want to read in a novel, but that's not it.
I think they should read Legend Land because it's a good book. It's not a fluff piece of literature; it hasn't been slapped together. Real effort and energy has been put into this; the book is real. Yes, it has giant, anthropomorphic talking wolves, fairytale characters and it's concerned with anything but reality.
However, it's as real a novel as anything I've ever read. All the emotions the characters felt, I felt while I was writing them.
Now, that doesn't mean I felt murderous rage or crushing sadness while writing certain sections; but was I angry whenever my characters were vehement? Yeah. I was depressed or in a darker emotional state when my characters were sad; I use real emotions when I write.
I don't pretend; this book and all the emotions in it are just as much me as they are pages and paper. That is why I think people should read my novel, and that's why I kept writing it; it quickly became an incredibly personal endeavor that I just could not back away from.
Whenever they read Legend Land, they're reading real emotions; they're also seeing the world from three different pairs of eyes during the course of the story, but those three pairs of eyes each belong to a character as real and as complex as, in my opinion, any person.
Legend Land is unique yes; it has unclear lines between good and evil, complex characters and a character driven story, plus very unique twists on fairy tale characters.
But I think the real reason people will read it is because the characters, and the vast array of emotions they feel, are relatable. And I think they're relatable because a real person (me) felt them before they were written down.
12. How can people contact you? ( email, Facebook or do you have a blog? )
I have tons of ways people can contact me!
You can easily get in touch with me using the contact page on my official website, http://Ark-Storm.com.
There are icons for my Twitter, https://twitter.com/arkstorm1 (@arkstorm1)
My Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/arkstorm
My YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCss814I-BYKRhwIiemyqR3g.
Of course, there’s also my Kickstarter campaign where you can help back Legend Land and contact me: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/arkstorm/legend-land-a-novel-by-noah-barfield.
Basically, there are just a ton of ways to get in touch with me! I want to be available to people, so they can ask relevant questions, find out more about me, and you know, just express how much they love and adore me.
13. Is there anything else that you'd like to add?
Most of my social media is dedicated to my Kickstarter right now, but on my YouTube I recently began doing a section called "Writer's Corner", which is by me, a writer, for writers, those who love nerding out about writing or words.
So, I'm going to be putting up videos with tips and advice, telling everyone about the latest stuff I'm discovering, whether it be amazing books or cool writing things. Also, it's a progressive place for writing; new writing techniques, hybrids between writing and whatever, and new fields of the written word being combined with technology.
It'll also be a great place to have your writing possibly talked about, Q&As, discussions with fellow authors or whatever else happens to pop into my head to geek out about. I think that's about it!
14. Well, this has been fun! Thank you for joining me, Noah, and I hope your novel becomes ever so successful!!!
Thanks Keturah, this has been great! I'm glad I could do this and I wish you the best of luck in all your endeavors.
I really hope that everyone who sees this will check out my Kickstarter and support me in whatever way they're able. Here's to helping make my dream come true, and helping anyone else that we can along the way.
So, what do you all think? Does Legend Land sound interesting? Be sure to check out Noah's links and see how you can help him out!