Tag Archives: Drew Hayes

Interview with author Drew Hayes

If you know anything about me you know I like a good laugh. And Drew Hayes has given me many great books with some great laughs. With his Spells, Swords, & Stealth 

books and Forging Hephaestus (I haven’t gotten to his Super Powereds series yet but book one is on my kindle) but I think out of all his books Fred the Vampire Accountant has given me the most laughs. And I am supper happy to say Fred’s 4th book will be out in just a few days, I think Fred would appreciate the correct dates and everything so on 07/25/2017 to be exact. I got a chance to ask Drew some questions so of course I asked stupid ones. But he seamed to enjoy it, and hopefully he will be back again.

  1. You always have such good Audiobook narrators. Roger Wayne   is Fantastic with the Spells, Swords, & Stealth Series and Amy Landon hit it out of the Park with Forging Hephaestus But I don’t think I have ever heard a narrator as perfect for a book as  Kirby Heyborne. So my first question is,

Q: How long did it take you to find Kirby Heyborne for Fred, the Vampire Accountant series?

A: From my perspective, it didn’t take very long at all. Usually Tantor Media (the company who does my audiobooks) will send me a few narrators to check out for each new project. With Fred, there weren’t many people in the mix on the first round, and as soon as I heard Kirby speak I knew we’d found the voice of my undead accountant.

 

  1. Q: You are the GM of Authors And Dragons, A Podcast Where A Party Of Fantasy Authors Try To Make It Through A Game Of Pathfinder. How did that get started?

 

A: Funnily enough, it started during a Fred release. I have a tradition where every time I get a 5-star review on release day, either from my speedy readers or those who had ARCS, I do a shot and post a picture. That day required quite a few shots, until I was rather buzzed and chatting with Robert Bevan of Critical Failures. We were just talking about gaming, I was in a hilariously bad superhero game at the time that I wished we’d taped, and from there the idea snowballed. We reached out to fellow writer friends, found some who gamed, and it all went from there.

{I Love Robert Beven’s books and the titles of his short stories are worth the price alone}

  1. Q: If you could do it all over again, would you change anything in your FIRST book?

A: I’m sure I would find no end of tweaks to make, fixing bad habits I’ve since broken and cleaning things up. That said, I wouldn’t change anything about the core story itself. I liked how Super Powereds: Year 1 came out, and I’m happy with the story as it unfolded.

 

  1. Q: Have you ever judged a book by its cover?

A: I’m sure I have. That’s not always a bad thing, though. There’s a language to covers, they’re meant to let a prospective reader know what sort of tale they are in for. If you see half-naked people kissing on the front and don’t like romance, then there’s nothing wrong with realizing you are not that book’s target audience. A cover should, ideally, draw in people who will like what your selling and let those who wouldn’t dig it know they can move on to something else.

  1. Q: Have you ever had a side character try to steal the show? Would you like to go back and make a spin off series or something for them? Or is there a theme or idea you’d love to be able to explore in more depth?

A: Not only did I have a side-character steal some of the show, I gave the guy his own spin-off. Corpies was a book following a side-character from Super Powereds and putting him in the spotlight. There are more I’d like to focus on as well, although some are harder to create a whole book around than others. Sadly, that means until I come up with a killer plot the world will have to wait on a Johnny Three Dicks standalone novel.

{Johnny three dicks is from Forging Hephaestus and is one of my favorite side characters ever and he had hardly any screen time}

  1. Q: If you could read any book again for the first-time What book would it be?

A: Anansi Boys, by Neil Gaiman. I’ve loved other books more, but none ever quite had the same feeling of magic when I first read them.

 

  1. Q: How many books have you written, how many have you tried to publish, and how many are in print?

A: I have written 15, and when The Fangs of Freelance (Fred #4) comes out that will be my 14th to be published. The missing novel was from way back when I did my first ever web-serial, and while I did finish it I don’t expect it will see the light of day as a published work anytime soon. It’s not terrible, but it very much reflects how new I was to writing at the time.

 

  1. Q: Are there any occupational hazards to being a novelist?

A: You don’t realize how much of your social interaction comes from work until you begin staying home all the time. So you start talking to your dog, a little at first, and then more until you realize that the dog left the room. Cut to a year later and you’re walking down the aisle of a grocery store mumbling to yourself about Doritos, because talking to yourself has become second nature. It’s a hazard they never warn you about.

{I have the same problem as a reviewer with audiobooks. I crackup for no reason apparent to anyone around me all the time}

 

  1. Q: If you had 1 million pennies what else would you have?

A: A shitload of empty wishing wells.

  1. Q: How many people have you killed over the course of your career? Real people first, then fictional.

A: For the first part, my company lawyers (which are me, only wearing a tie) have advised me to plead the fifth. For the second, it’s impossible to say unless we drill down. If you mean main characters, I think I’ve only killed one on the page, although plenty died in backstories. If we start including nameless pawns, however, I genuinely have no clue. The Spells, Swords, & Stealth folks have seen a lot of corpses in their travels.

  1. Q: What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? Did it end up helping? Or did we just count that person in question 10.

A:  When I started, I had ideas of doing serious, action-oriented stuff. Okay… Dresden Files, I wanted to do Dresden Files. But I never landed that tone well at all, and my early readers called me on it. It wasn’t something I wanted to hear at the time, but when I really went back and looked at my work, they were right. The parts that were hitting well were the funnier bits, where I was writing more as me than what I wanted to be. So I steered into it, giving the humor more room to run, and my work improved a lot. As an odd bonus, I found that with comedy to play off of, I actually could write serious moments, I just had to choose them with more care.

{I love the humor in your books, but you definitely know how to throw a gut punch to the feels}

  1. Q: What has been the best compliment?

A: When I’ve gotten emails from folks telling me how my books got them through rough patches in their lives. I’ve needed books to escape in as well, so it means a lot to hear that I’m giving that to other people.

  1. Q: Do you have any advice to give aspiring writers?

A: I try to, when they ask, but the truth is unless they have a specific question it’s hard not to fall back onto the canned answers, because they’re all true. Read and write constantly, hire a good editor, and give up on the idea of the book coming out naturally and beautifully. Writing takes effort, and first drafts are usually awful. Accept that, and realize that you can go back and edit to make something good, but there’s no way to tweak a blank page.

  1. Q: What was the last book you read? Did you like it?

A: Mustache Shenanigans by Jay Chandrasekhar.  It was the story of Broken Lizard, including how they made Super Troopers and Beerfest, so yeah, it was a fun read.

  1. Q: What one question do you think I should have asked you, but didn’t?

A: When does The Fangs of Freelance come out? July 25th. And if people want to celebrate the release with me, they can do so at my annual Facebook Digital Release Party, which includes Q&A, live-streams, prizes, and, hopefully, shots. They can check it out here https://www.facebook.com/events/327971990965631

{I’ll be there and you can also preorder on amazon and at http://www.reuts.com }

  1. Q: Do you have any questions for me?

A: Got any fun personal traditions of your own?

{There is one with my 3 kids that started when they were 12, 10, and 8 years old.  One day I was driving my daughter home from school and she was kind of sad and not herself so I poked her arm and then acted like I didn’t when she looked over and I kept doing it every time she looked away. Until she started laughing.  Now there are so many rules to the game its impossible to win. Like It doesn’t count if driving north on a street that starts with a G.  When all 4 of us are in the car at the same time the rules get really complex. OH yeah and my kids are now 21 19 and 17}

Here is a Goblin animation of the intro The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant.

Here are a few images From reviews of Drew’s books I did and one I didn’t use

NPCSsplitrun

Hob’s Review of NPCs (Spells, Swords, & Stealth #1) by Drew Hayes

NPCs (Spells, Swords, & Stealth #1)

by Drew Hayes

 

THE BLURB!!!

What happens when the haggling is done and the shops are closed? When the quest has been given, the steeds saddled, and the adventurers are off to their next encounter? They keep the world running, the food cooked, and the horses shoed, yet what adventurer has ever spared a thought or concern for the Non-Player Characters?

In the town of Maplebark, four such NPCs settle in for a night of actively ignoring the adventurers drinking in the tavern when things go quickly and fatally awry. Once the dust settles, these four find themselves faced with an impossible choice: pretend to be adventurers undertaking a task of near-certain death or see their town and loved ones destroyed. Armed only with salvaged equipment, second-hand knowledge, and a secret that could get them killed, it will take all manner of miracles if they hope to pull off their charade.

And even if they succeed, the deadliest part of their journey may well be what awaits them at its end.

 

NPCs  Audiobook

I started  listening  to this Audiobook back in January of last year. When I was only about 20 minutes in to the book i broke my phone.   It took forever to get a new one and in the meantime I had bought a few more things from audible. When the new phone came and I got the audible app again I never remembered to go down the list to start this one over again. In my mind I somehow thought I had listened to it. Just a week or two ago I saw a post on FB by the author saying book 3 was coming out.

So I went and got book 2 and 3 but I like to listen to the first few chapters of book one before I start the second book if I don’t recall it well. Imagine my surprise when I remembered how I had never finished it. And I am happy and mad at myself for taking so long. Happy because I had a great AB to listen to while I drove for a few hours. Mad because it is a great fricken book I could have listened to over a year ago.

But let’s do this review. The cover is ok. I like how it shows off the parties weapons, but it would have been nice to see the party as well.  The narration is good. Each of the main NPCs having their own “voice”. It is read by Roger Wayne the same narrator that did The Subtle Art Of Not Giving a Fuck, and I loved that one as well. he also did an Audiobook called Until Trevor: By Aurora Rose Reynolds  But even though it has my name and it looks just like me on the cover I probably won’t be reading that one.

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What do you mean that looks nothing like me? Moving on we don’t have time for this argument.

Have you ever played a tabletop RPG? Did you ever have your whole party die?  Did you ever take even a half of a second to think how your death might inconvenience the NPCs around you? NO you didn’t  Because you just think about yourself. You treat NPCs as figments of the GM’s imagination and if you die you just roll a new character all the while complaining about your lost loot. You never stop to think that the soup you made in the forest with mushrooms you found when you rolled a 1 would slowly poison you. Or that when you died in a tavern from poison while you held a quest summons from the mad king he might think the people in the tavern poisoned you. And I am sure you never thought for one second that the mad king would send his solders to burn the whole village of the peasants who dared to poison someone he wanted to hire for a job. But that is exactly what happened to the 4 unfortunate NPCs sitting at the tavern the night a party playing Spells, Swords, & Stealth wiped before they even got to the king to start the quest.

So to save the village from being burned to the ground and all of their friends and family being slaughtered..When they realize that the king didn’t know the names of the dead adventures, just that one was a Paladin one a Rogue, one a Wizard, and one a Barbarian. The 4 brave NPCs step up and don the gear of the 4 adventurers that walked in to their tavern and died.

Let’s take a look at the main….. how about we call them PNPCCs  or Playing Non-Player Character Characters.

We Have a hunchbacked ex-henchman  Gnome. The half-Orc  Bartender that has deep thoughts but says little.  The Mayors Daughter that gets kidnapped by Goblins every other week or so. and the  klutzy Mayors house guard responsible for stopping the goblins . I am not going to say who takes what class because it changes as they travel, and its hilariously awesome. But my favorite part of the whole book is when they meet the goblins in the forest..  forest

I guess NPCs falls in to the LitRPG category. But I am beginning to think the main classification for LitRPG should be that it is a book  not like other LitRPG books. For the most part they are all so unique yet still bring that nostalgic feeling to me that I am really loving this Sub-genre of Fantasy .

FINAL THOUGHTS

Definitely a good book to pick up on a rainy day when you need a good laugh or listen to on a long boring drive.  If you have never played a RPG before you will still find this book amusing and an all around good read. But if, like me you played D&D at a young age then you will find this series will bring back a flood of memories as well as many good laughs. My only complaint is that it was to short. I am going to Give NPCs by Drew Hayes 4.75 little goblins© out of five.

To purchase this book.or get it free with Kindle unlimited

Audible.com

 

Here is a link to goodreads to find out more of another great series by Drew Hayes I highly recommend Book one is called The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant (Fred, the Vampire Accountant, #1)