The Twelve(ish) Days of Authors – Day 12, Cotton E. Davis

29 Dec

Today brings us to our last scheduled interview – I really enjoyed doing this, so I might try this again in a few months.  

Anyhow, up last is Burst author Cotton E. Davis, and he’s here to talk about his science-fiction novel, TimeWarp, Inc. I’d like to welcome Cotton and thank him for agreeing to be interviewed!

 TimeWarp

In his own words:

 

My sci-fi novel TimeWarp, Inc. is basically the story of an agnostic ex-soldier who travels back in time, where he meets and becomes Christ’s best friend.  It was published in August by Burst, and can be purchased in both ebook and paperback forms.

I’m a retired (age 66) restaurant and retail store manager whose last job was working in the records section of a medium-sized city in the U.S. Pacific Northwest.  Prior to that, I lived in the Washington, D.C. area and before that St. Louis.   

 

For whatever reason, I can’t sync links very easily on this post – check out Cotton’s website at  http://timewarpincorporated.com/    

 

Tell us about TimeWarp, Inc. and who you think would like it.

I originally titled my story Christ and the Centurion, because my time-traveler hero begins the book embedded as a Roman legionary with Julius Caesar’s Tenth Legion in Transalpine Gaul.  The publisher suggested TimeWarp, Inc. instead, and I grudgingly liked that title better.  An agnostic traveling back in time and meeting Christ was ironic enough, but him falling in love with a twentieth-century woman who is a devout Christian shows how characters often take on lives of their own and write themselves.  As far as who will like the novel goes, who knows?  I’ve been told TimeWarp, Inc. is a good story, and women in particular seem to enjoy the romance, but that’s all in the reading eyes of the beholder.

 

Do you have any other projects in the works that we should know about?

Strangely enough, Burst Books has accepted a sequel to TimeWarp, Inc. about a Neanderthal boy who is time transported to our century at age six and mainstreamed into a mid-Missouri High School at age 15.  My title was Caveman High, but I suspect Diane, my editor, will come up with something better.  I believe the Neanderthal story is due out in July, 2013.

 

In the spirit of sharing, tell us about a book by another author you adore.

The Death of Attila by Cecelia Holland.  Ms. Holland not only gives the reader an avuncular view of Attila the Hun–the Scourge of God–but does so with a keen understanding of human beings, in this case Huns, Germanic tribesmen and Romans.  Cecelia Holland is always a pleasure to read, as was Frank Yerby.

 

What’s the best movie you’ve seen so far this year?

Lincoln.  Daniel Day Lewis made the 16th president come alive to me.

 

How do you feel about writing the novel length as compared to other formats?

To me–and remember I’m a novice at this–writing novels is less difficult than crafting short stories.  In a novel, the writer can take his time and pace himself, characterize (relatively speaking) at his leisure.  With short stories, you have to make every word count, sometimes do double and triple duty: characterizing, setting a mood, describing a background and moving the plot along all at the same time.  I really admire short-story writers.

 

Did you get into publishing a novel off the hop, or were you in any magazines or anthologies previously?

I’ve pretty much Forrest Gumped my way through life.  One of the many jobs I’ve had was as a newspaper reporter during the mid-1970s.  From there, I freelanced several magazine articles, and became a stringer for a time on a martial arts magazine.  When I retired, ten years ago, I found myself with nothing to do, so I tried my hand at fiction writing.  It wasn’t nearly as easy as I thought it would be and, therefore, became a challenge.

 

Every author has the most loathsome part of the craft–what do you hate the most?

Marketing and promotion.  I have no skill at it…or with computers.

 

For you, what makes the difference between a ‘good’ book and a ‘great’ book?

Emotional content.  I want to feel something when I read.

 

In TimeWarp, Inc., do you have a favorite character?

Actually, I have two.  Historian Ph.D. Gwen Hoffman who is tasked with preparing my time-traveler protagonist for life in the first-century A.D. and Jeshua bar Yosef (Christ) himself.  Gwen is like a lot of people.  She doesn’t know what she is capable of doing until she is forced by exigency to do it.  Also, she is a good person who has no hidden agendas, unlike so much of the rest of the world, and she falls in love (with my protagonist) for the right reasons.  As for Christ, he was a challenge.  I had to make assumptions about him from reading between the lines of the scriptures.  One of the assumptions I made was…he was interesting.  Therefore, I made him bright and funny and skilled socially.  And, as one character put it, he was “a nice guy.”

That about wraps it up with the Twelve(ish) Days interviews – now I’ll have to think to keep this blog interesting. I hope wherever you are, that you have all the best for 2013. 

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