At the Dawn of the Texas Republic declaring independence from Mexico, New Megiddo was born. Created by a death cult led by the Reverend Brigham Wainwright, who actively worked to flood the empty, barren land with his American followers; undermining his Mexican overlords. Fast-forward several centuries and America has become New Megiddo, a theocracy run by the Schrubb Administration, where order is kept using the technology of the [Virtue-Net] to feed the Reverend Wilhelm Wainwright’s sermons to the minds of the people. In the slums, the humble beginnings of an insurgency of Apostates take shape. The cruel and clueless policies of the Church of New Megiddo and the ruling Regime push the disenfranchised masses one step closer to all-out rebellion.
Lars Teeney has kindly joined me today to chat about ‘New Megiddo Rising’, an engrossing dystopian future view of the United States. Lars, let’s start today’s interview with the start of your novel. What sparked the original ideas behind the story?
It started during the Bush years in art school. With the advent of the security state, that coincided with the rise in popularity of reality TV.
And what comment did you want to make on the combination of reality TV and the security state?
I wanted to show that dystopian fiction was not that far off from reality. It was a cathartic release of anxiety about the current plight of our country.
Was research an important aspect to support your dystopian reality?
Yes, maybe too much.
In light that you think you might have done too much research, was it important to balance out the hard facts with more personal aspects from your life? What kinds of things did you include from your life?
Oh yeah. The characters were partly inspired from life, and partly inspired by old school X-men comics.
Awesome, I love the inspiration from comics. As they’ve been inspired from a graphical format can you see in your head that might play some of your characters if they made a movie from this book?
Yes, Michelle Rodriguez, Devon Aoki and Chad L. Coleman.
That’s a pretty solid starting cast. Now, I know that ‘New Megiddo Rising’ is not your only book, which usually means that you are working on your next writing project. Can you give us a little taste of what your next writing project involves?
I’m working a science fiction novel that I will try to get traditionally published.
Good luck entering the world of traditional publishing. I hope that it works for you. Trying to move into the realm of traditional publishing indicates to me that you are writing for a purpose. Why do you write?
It’s the realm that I get to do whatever I want in. My day job as a Graphic Designer is very ordered and strict.
As you are doing whatever you like when you write do you still try to include some structure to your writing process? How does your writing process work?
I outline the book from beginning to end. I write every day and I go to a coffee shop so that I am not cloistered in my room.
Do you listen to any music when you’re in the coffee shop?
It depends on the mood. I listen to different genres and podcasts.
Is editing a large part of your writing process?
I pay a professional editor after I have given the book several passes and I employ beta readers.
Overall, from the start of writing through to editing and self-publishing do you have any top tips that you think other authors could benefit from taking on-board??
Spend your budget wisely when promoting your self-published books. Don’t get trapped in the writing to market game.
That is some solid advice. Now to round out today’s interview I’d like to move onto the quick fire round where creative answers are encouraged to get a bit of a sneaky insight into your personality. And I’ll start us off with: what is your favorite ocean?
*Laughs* I should have seen that answer coming :). Do you have any philosophies that you live by?
Smoke ’em if you got ’em.
Are you a valuable asset on a quiz team?
I like the honesty there. What is your zodiac sign?
If you invented a monster what would it look like and what would you call it?
Are you introvert or extrovert?
Would you have a cast party with the characters in your book if they could come to life?
Have you ever danced in the rain?
If you ruled your own country, who would you get to write the national anthem?
I wouldn’t have one. Probably, a national joke would work.
Are you left or right handed?
What is your favorite quote?
When in Rome run for the border.
How are the colours in rainbows made?
Unicorns on Ex-lax.
*Laughs* That’s a good answer, but it sounds a bit painful for those unicorns. What color socks are you wearing?
If you could breed two animals together to defy the laws of nature what new animal would you create?
Do you have a ‘do not use’ or ‘most hated words’ list when you are writing?
All words are fair game.
What’s the most unusual name you’ve ever come across?
What is your favourite line, quote or statement from your book?
“Piss off, you small like crap.”
What is your favourite word?
Interesting, I can’t say it’s in my top list of words though. Lars, I appreciate you chatting with me today about your book and I wish you the best of luck with your promotion and I hope your foray into the world of traditional publishing is successful.
Want to find out more about Lars? Connect here!