I hope you’ll enjoy today’s visit from writer, J. Lenni Dorner. Today’s blog will be more of a question and answer session, and will of course include links so you can check out the anthology where you can read the short story, EGOT and the Pond King.
J Lenni Dorner began publishing under pseudonyms at age eight, and won several awards before turning eighteen. Education includes the Pennsylvania Governor’s School for Excellence in Creative Writing semi finals and Penn State University’s Honors and Scholars program. While embracing the ancient tribal traditions, J Lenni Dorner discovered a story originated by The Grandfathers. J is happily married and living in Pennsylvania (USA) on the original lands of the Lenni Lenape people. When not reading or writing, J enjoys video games (such as The Sims and Civilization), funny cat videos, finding new drawings of dragons on Pinterest, and watching movies. Look for a short story titled “EGOT and the Pond King” by J Lenni Dorner in the anthology “Wrong!” (Southern Star Publications, December 2014).
I weave fantasy with lore to unhinge your mind.
I write fantasy because I love creating new worlds and unusual species. The natural style of my writing flows toward a dark side, and I have a love of throwing in that which borders on possible just enough to make the mind itch. I love itchy minds! I was working on an urban fantasy for a while, but that’s in the edit stage now. (Sometimes a story must sit and brew before it can spread wings and fly off the page.) So my focus has returned to high fantasy- a story with knights, castles, dragons, elves and such, though they push the boundaries of your expectations. I intend for it to become a series. The later books will also fall into the category of portal fantasy, as a few from our fictional-future world will appear on my fantasy world. One character will have a strong impact on the storyline. It’s all very exciting.
Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I weave fantasy with lore to unhinge your mind. I’ve written a few books that remain unpublished (querying, editing, totally rewriting). I’ve published short stories and poetry under several other names. WRONG!: A themed anthology 2014 includes my short story, EGOT and the Pond King.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
For NaNoWriMo 2014, I’ll be working on The Dagger in the Darkrise, which is a high fantasy novel. It was inspired by a gaming community my friends and I began taking part in fifteen years ago.
The anthology, Wrong!, features the winners of a writing contest. We were to use the lines, “I have a list and a map. What could possibly go wrong?,” in the story. Entries had to be under 2,000 words. I was also inspired by a humorous image on Pinterest. Combining the required lines and that image, I wrote EGOT and the Pond King.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think it’s going to be really interesting. There’s a big flood right now from the indie section. Some of it is great, some of it is good, and some of it is in desperate need of editors. The larger presses are going to need to adapt to this new love of authors who don’t need them. Those who can change, who can offer something amazing to writers and readers alike, will survive. Any who can’t adapt will vanish in the next decade, tossed onto the pile with Enron, MySpace, and Pontiac vehicles.
My most recent publication is the short story titled EGOT and the Pond King in the anthology Wrong! (Southern Star Publications, December 2014). I was inspired by two different writing prompts. The first was a requirement to enter the contest- the phrase “I have a list and a map. What could possibly go wrong?” had to appear. The second prompt was a bit of humor about names and American entertainment awards- it lends to a joke inside the story. (EGOT is an acronym for “Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony.” A distinction officially held by twelve people.)
I also spent my NaNoWriMo November working a fantasy book entitled The Dagger in the Darkrise. I was inspired over a decade ago by an image of a woman with a sword. The story is finally coming together properly after all this time. I’m not sure it would have made it before, as the cast is diverse (though sometimes that isn’t as heavy a factor in the fantasy genre). Timing is a big factor in the publishing industry.
“Well, to be honest, the first thing I said was that I never thought anyone would propose marriage thanks to a pack of sugar and a cardboard flag.”
I laugh as I bend my wrist to flick the stone into the water.
“Oh, dear. Here, you can eat the rest of mine,” Grammy says, stopping my hand just before I take a bite of stone. The rest of my sandwich lingers on the pond, waiting for the king to enjoy my mistake.
“He should at least let me see his trident!”
“The Pond King. Our map led us here. What does the list say? Does it mention how to wake him up?”