Wendy Terrien, an international bestselling author, received her first library card at the age of 2 and, a few years later, began writing her own stories. She serves on the board of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and is a member of Pikes Peak Writers, the Colorado Authors’ League and the Author’s Guild. Learn more about Wendy by visiting her website: wendyterrien.com.
The author offers a Free download from his book Young Adult “The Guards of the Rampart”, the first book in its series, without obligation because “just a gift for people to try the series and see if the series is their cup of tea”. Download here.
Tell us the story of this book. What inspired you to write it? Where does the story/theme come from?
“The Forge of Bonds” is Chronicle Three, but the fourth physical book in my series. The idea for the first book, “The Rempart Guards”, came to me while I was watching television. One murder in the series seemed to have been committed by a Chupacabra, something I had never heard of. The investigator then said they needed to see a cryptozoologist, something else I had never heard of. So, I went to Google and learned all about cryptids – creatures that may or may not exist, like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster.
Each week, The Colorado Sun and Colorado Humanities & Center For The Book feature an excerpt from a Colorado book and an interview with the author. Explore the SunLit archives at coloradosun.com/sunlit.
During this process, I was surprised to learn that there are hundreds of lesser known cryptids, according to some people, but which remain hidden, things like Skyfish and Kappa and the Mongolian Death Worm. My creative juices started flowing, wondering how such creatures, if they really existed, could remain hidden for so long. From these thoughts, the “answer” to this question and the world of Jason Lex was born.
Cryptids play a key role in every one of my books, and all of the creatures my readers will encounter are “real,” meaning you can find all kinds of information about them on the internet.
Of course, the moral of the story is that TV can be good for you. It may even inspire you to write a novel.
You mentioned that “The Forge of Bonds” is Chronicle Three, but the fourth physical book in your series. Can you explain?
Sure. After writing Chronicle One, “The Rampart Guards,” I had two characters I loved: Jason Lex and his new best friend, Sadie Callahan. Jason’s next adventure was taking him to London and it made no sense for Sadie to travel with him. Plus, I knew she had her own story to explore.
The result was two “pound twos”. Chronicle Two-Jason who is “The League of Governors” and Chronicle Two-Sadie, who is “The Clan Calling”. They take place on the same timeline, but are two totally different stories in two different locations.
In Chronicle 3/Physical Book 4, “The Forging of Bonds”, Jason and Sadie are reunited once again in their hometown of Salton.
Put this excerpt into context. How does it fit into the whole book? Why did you select it?
The excerpt is taken from the first chapter of “La forge des obligations”. I wanted to share something that introduced the main characters, didn’t reveal too much of the previous books, and also included a taste of what it’s like to live in the world of cryptids, powers, and the looming threat of enemies by Jason and Sadie. .
Also, friendly dogs. Shay is Jason’s dog in this clip, and Finn is another dog on the show. She’s a mentor to Shay. None of the dogs have magical powers or anything like that, but they’re smart and heroic, and I love writing about them. And no, no dog dies. I don’t mind spoiling that aspect of the books. Dog lovers can rest easy.
Tell us about the creation of this book. What influences and/or experiences influenced the project before you sat down to write the book?
Before starting this book, I wanted to review the previous three books in the series so that I could refresh the story in my mind. I decided to accomplish this by listening to the audio versions of each.
It was a surprisingly delicious experience! As an author, I hadn’t really had the opportunity to simply enjoy the books as a reader, or in this case, as a listener, and I found myself feeling the stories of a different way. It was remarkable. And it was a great way to prepare myself to write the next action-packed adventure.
Shout out to the narrator of audiobooks, Brian Callanan. He did a fantastic job.
Once you started writing, did the story take you in unexpected directions? If so, how would you describe the treatment of a narrative that seems to have a mind of its own?
Every book I’ve written has its own mind. Or maybe it’s the characters coming to life and making their own decisions. I start with a high-level overview. I know the main points I expect to achieve, but I don’t know how we – meaning me and the characters – are going to get to each one. Inevitably, things happen along the way that weren’t intended, and the directions change, even the endings change. I almost feel like I’m just the scribe and the others are telling the story of another plane.
As for how I handle it, well, I don’t handle it as much as I love the ride. It’s fun to see how things twist and change. It is magic.
What were the biggest challenges you faced or surprises you encountered while finishing this book?
Time was the biggest challenge. Life was taking me in unexpected directions and it was hard to find time to focus on what I needed to do. After a while, however, the need to write the story took precedence over everything else.
For my own sanity, I had to write it. So, I apologized to my friends and family, settled into my writing cave, figuratively speaking, and wrote, wrote, and wrote. “The Forge of Bonds” is my longest novel to date, and I finished it in record time compared to the previous three books.
But it impacted my back, and especially my arms, resulting in a writer’s version of tennis elbow from all the typing. It was a bit of a surprise – hurt by the writing. I hadn’t expected that kind of consequence.
Tell us about your writing process: where and how do you write?
I write at home, usually in the bedroom or living room with my laptop and a desk. I love the idea of writing in a cafe, and I’ve tried, but I’m too distracted by people watching and listening.
Public spaces are ripe for material, and I can’t help but observe what’s going on around me, which makes me unproductive when it comes to writing the words.
Tell us about your next project.
The final book in the Jason Lex series is in the works. I’m both excited and sad to end the series – the characters have been a big part of my life for years and they feel a bit like family.
I’m also working on another type of project for me, a psychological thriller. I love to read thrillers, and writing one (or more) has always been on my “one day I will…” list. And now I do.
I love how the process stretches my brain and takes me out of my comfort zone. And I’m excited about the story with its twists and surprises. It’s so much fun. And a ton of work. But still, so much fun. After all, writing a story is a bit like magic. And who doesn’t love magic?