Today’s interview is with a character from a short story that is published in the New Author’s Journal. His name is Bill the Brewster, and he features in the story As Time Goes By by David Russell.
I arrive inside the story, not quite sure what to expect. I appear to be in a cafe of some kind. A man approaches and introduces himself with a smile as Bill the Brewster. We sit down at a table and he leans forward, eager to answer my questions.
I’m a little scattered at the idea of a character waiting for me. Usually I have to introduce myself and explain why I’m here!
“Uh, can you please tell my readers a little bit about yourself?” I stutter. “And maybe something about any difficulties you may be facing?”
“I am known as Bill the Brewster. It’s my pleasure to appear in the story, As Time Goes By. I frequent the Rivertown Cafe, where this story occurs.” Bill momentarily stretches. “My big difficulty is drinking and my son, in his thirties, has a terminal illness.”
I nod sympathetically. “I’m sure I can guess, but if you could have any wish granted, what would it be?”
“If I could have any wish in the world, it would be that my son’s condition be reversed. And, I wish that life were my addiction.”
He grows solemn for a moment and I bite my lip as I record his answer.
“If you could ask your author to change one thing about your story, what would you ask for?”
“I would ask my author to reverse my son’s condition in his story. Then, we’d really have something to celebrate. I like vanilla ice cream, and would buy a 10-gallon pail were that to happen.”
I laugh with him as he chuckles a bit. “Ten gallons of ice cream certainly sounds like a celebration to me!” I reply. My badge begins to blink and I realize that my time is shortened due to being inside a short story. I rise and shake his hand. “I wish you all the best with your story,” I say, “thank you so much for chatting with me.”
The world fades and I am once again in my world.
David C. Russell is prolific at the piano, old enough to be a qualified kibitzer but still young enough to kvell over good bestowed by the King of the Universe. Practically, David is a husband, the father of two adult children, and grandfather to two granddaughters, Willow and Rowan. David resides with his wife, Sherry, in Lower Michigan, and he is semi-retired but active. Professionally, David is a short story writer, a pianist specializing in adult contemporary music, and formerly a music therapist and medical transcriptionist.
He published his first novella, Winds of Change, in 2012, and his work has appeared several anthologies: 31 Days Of October: Volume One, by Shae Hamrick (Amazon, 2016) The Power of Forgiveness: A Collection of Short Stories, by Stephanie Baskerville (Amazon, 2017) Waiting for Messiah, by David C. Russell and others (Smashwords, September 2017)
David enjoys keeping up with the news, short walks, swimming, playing Uno, and on occasion playing Scrabble. His blog, called “Grafted in and on the Journey,” is faith-based and life-based. READ IT HERE.
He is also involved with online writing groups and with Scribophile.com, which provides writers the opportunity to give and receive helpful critiques.
You can find out more about David and his author-journey on his WEBSITE
I’ve been very busy here at the InterFiction Gazette lately! Today I am excited to bring you another interview with a character who might be showing up at the Burning Embers Clean Character Take-Over event next week. Again, Kiernan Kane will be there on Tuesday evening from 10-11pm EDT.
But first, a little bit about this character and his book:
Dark storm clouds soared through the blazing red sky like birds of prey while the sun melted in the meadow like iron ore in a black smith’s forge.
It’s a bad omen, Amanda thought as she ran panting and with a stabbing pain in her side through the thickets of the woods.
“Amanda, stop. There is no need for haste. Do not allow your feelings to blind you,” said Ralston as he appeared right in front of her blocking her path.
“That is easy for you to say!” she replied angrily. “William and Maighread mean nothing to you, but they are everything to me. They are my family, and I will not abandon them.”
I stare around at the Great Hall of Dunollie Castle and let out a low whistle. (I can whistle when I’m in the FictionVerse, and I take advantage of this skill whenever I can!). Above me is a high loft ceiling. The whitewashed walls are decorated with oak wainscoting and are covered by elaborate tapestries. In the vastness of the hall, countless torches spread their flickering light over a massive oak table covered from end to end with food that looks and smells so good it is making my mouth water. Large jugs also adorn the table, and I tiptoe across the large red and green rugs to peek inside where I see that they are filled to the brim with ale and red wine.
I hear the sound of a throat clearing and look up to see a handsome young man eyeing me curiously from the other side of the table. His long hair is as black as raven’s feathers, and his dark brown eyes seem to be hiding countless mysteries. As he rounds the table to greet me, I can see that he wears a sword, as well as a bow and quiver slung over his shoulder.
“Good evening,” I greet him. “My name is Jenelle Schmidt with the InterFiction Gazette. Can you tell me and my readers a little bit about yourself?”
“My name is Ralston. I am a Pict. My ancestors were elves. But I am part mortal,” he replies with a big smile and a bow. “I am a warrior of the Seelie court and the guardian of Amanda, daughter of Lady Murrigen, the goddess of the lake.”
I cannot resist smiling back. “What is it like living in your world?”
“It means to be free and without worry, to live in peace with all beings and to be one with nature,” Ralston replies, still smiling.
I nod as I jot down my answer. “I can see how that would be important to a member of the Seelie court,” I reply, though his comments about “peace with all beings” makes me wonder why such a world would need warriors, or why this Amanda needs a guardian. However, something about his manner makes me ask a different question, instead. “Is there anyone you rely on for help with your duties?” I ask politely.
“Aye, I always have the protection of the goddesses Arianrhod, Coventina, and Cailleach as well as Dryads, Ashrays, Draws, and elven warriors of the Seelie Court on my side.”
“That sounds like quite a mighty company,” I reply. “Last question and then I’ll let you get back to your job guarding Amanda. If you could have one wish granted, what would it be?”
“That people would stop fearing what they can’t explain. That they would be willing to open their minds and welcome the great mysteries nature has to offer, instead of choosing to stay ignorant and destroy everything that’s different,” he whispered and then faded into the darkness of the night.
I stand there for a moment, wondering what he meant by that! I guess that answers some of my other questions about why a world he claims to be so peaceful might need warriors.
About the Author: Ursula Williams
I was born in Berlin Germany, and I am a mother of three beautiful children and the grandmother two precious little girls. I left my home country in 1984 after a successful but very hectic career in advertising and marketing. For the next 28 years, I lived and worked in the Caribbean, travelled the USA, Canada, UK and Scotland. It was in Scotland where I lost my heart rediscovered and developed my passion for writing. The beauty of Scotland, its rich history and fascinating mythology inspired me to write “Do you believe in a world of magic?” And I am certain that many more will follow. I now reside in Berlin but use every chance I can get to visit my family in Scotland. Stroll through Edinburgh’s beautiful old town. Spend time wandering through glens, forests and along the shores of lochs rivers.
Learn more about Ursula Williams and her books online:
Good morning, dear Reader! This week I’m doing something a little different and having a week of character interviews from the Burning Embers Clean Author group in honor of the Character Takeover Event said group is hosting on facebook next week. You can find more details about the event HERE.
Kiernan Kane will be there on Tuesday, April 23rd and he is hosting the hour from 10-11pm EDT. You won’t want to miss that!
Today, I would like to introduce you to Janie, from The Worlds Next Door by C.E. White.
Twelve-year-old Janie Rutland somewhat grudgingly befriends Reggie Rankin—the weird new kid at school—and finally has someone to investigate her curious sightings in the abandoned house next door. When they find there’s an impossible world in danger of total destruction, they face a choice. Do they have what it takes to save it? An eccentric fellowship gathers as they embark on a perilous quest in a race against time and their own fears. Traveling in what can only be described as a pirate hover ship, they’re threatened by monsters and storms, shipwrecks and death. Can they find the answers they need to save Sian—and maybe all worlds?
As the world around me solidifies, I gaze around with fascination. I am standing on what I can only describe as a hover ship. It is drizzling and a little chilly and I’m glad I wore my warm jacket. As my gaze sweeps the deck, I spot a young girl staring at me with wide, curious eyes. She approaches cautiously.
Janie jumped, catching sight of someone in the corner of her eye. Someone who wasn’t there two seconds ago. She looks around for the others, wondering if this is normal in Sian. Do people just randomly appear in this world? “Who are you?” she asks. “And where did you come from?”
I grin self-consciously. “Yeah, hi. I’m Jenelle Schmidt with the InterFiction Gazette and was told you’d be willing to answer a few questions? I…” The wind picks up and tosses a blast of driving rain into my face, causing me to sputter a bit and I pull my notebook close, hunching over it to protect it. “My readers would love to hear a little bit about you. Can you introduce yourself and tell us a bit about yourself?”
“Well, I’m Janie.” She stares across the deck, uncomfortable at being put on the spot. “I don’t know. I guess I’m not very interesting. I’m twelve. I like to read. My best friend Angel came down with a mysterious disease today.” She swallows and looks at her feet.
“I’m sorry to hear that,” I reply. “Can you tell me a little bit about this world? You come from Earth, like me, right? How did you end up here? And can you tell us a bit about how this world is different from our own?”
Janie laughs. “Uhhh, yeah. Definitely from Earth. I got here through this old house next door to mine. I knew there was something weird about it because I always saw these lights flickering, but nobody else ever saw them so I thought I might be crazy.” She shrugs and grins, then look around. “Guess I’m not.”
I write furiously. “An old house, you say? That’s intriguing. And can you explain a bit about what you’re doing here? I got the impression that you’re on a quest of some kind, care to elaborate?”
Her eyes start to sparkle now. “Yeah, it’s crazy. We went into the old house and lights came on behind one of the doors. We went in and found this old French guy, Lagat. He told us Sian (that’s what this world is called) was in danger and that we could help it. I was all for it. I mean, who could say no to that? A new world??”
I nod. “And you’re here with a friend, right? Is that the one who is sick? Can you tell me about him?”
“Yeah, so…I barely know him, honestly.” She shuffles her feet, looking nervous once again. “He befriended me, really. I didn’t know Angel was sick. He lives in her neighborhood, so he saw the ambulance plus his dad’s a doctor at the hospital.” She blinks hard a few times, eyes beginning to pool, then shakes her head. “Anyway, Reggie told me about it on the bus, then we got to talking at lunch, and he said he’d investigate the Old House with me, which no one else ever would. He…umm…well, I thought he was weird, but turns out he’s pretty OK. Better than that actually.”
I smile. “Sometimes the best people seem the weirdest, at first. So, some of my readers might find themselves on their own adventures some day… is there any advice you want to give them? Anything you wish you’d brought with you? Or anything you wish you had been better prepared for?”
“Ha! How could you prepare for walking into an old house and coming out in another world you didn’t know existed?” Janie cocks her head and looks up in thought. “Well, be prepared for anything, I guess. Not like a Boy Scout, like “carry matches with you” or anything, but like, mentally. The world is bigger than we know.”
I grin. “Seems like sound advice. Thank you for chatting with me, I know you’re busy trying to save the world. But just one final question: if you could change one thing about your life, what would it be and why?
Janie chuckles. “Ooh, that’s hard. But not. Right this minute, I’d say I wish Angel would get well. Beyond that, I guess it’s easy to say I wish I was better with people, but I also don’t want to fake it, and even if other people don’t get me, I think I’d rather be me than most of the people I meet. So…I guess, my hair. It’s stupid frizzy. I know it’s dumb to care, but I have no idea what to do with it no matter how many times Angel tries to teach me.”
I laugh with her as my badge begins to glow once more. “It was a pleasure to meet you,” I call as Sian fades from my sight. I return to my own world with a sigh. I never get to spend as much time as I’d like in these new worlds… but the good news is, I’ve found a new book to add to my reading list!
Hope you enjoyed meeting this character and catching a glimpse of the world within this story. I know I’m intrigued!
You can grab a copy of the book HERE
Or you can get a free copy of the audio book HERE (you can get the book and cancel before you get charged for membership if you don’t want an audible subscription)
C.E. White lives in the North Georgia mountains with her wonderful husband and two neurotic cats. Her creative pursuits include writing and collage art. Journeys to other worlds–from Neverland to Narnia–have always captivated her. The Worlds Next Door is her first book.