Howdy folks! I’m back with another installment of my 20 Questions game! I have with me today, get this, a blood doctor who writes vampire novels! How awesome is that? 🙂 So instead of boring you with an introduction, I’ll let him do it!
1.) Tell me a little bit about yourself.
I’m a hematopathologist by trade, a laboratory physician focusing on the diagnosis of blood and lymph node diseases using lab tests and microscopic evaluation of biopsy samples. And I write vampire novels, which amuses my colleagues.
2.) How long have you been writing?
I started writing seriously in October 2009, when I decided to write down the story I had been playing with in my head. The resulting manuscript was the basis for my first two books, Sunsetand Sunrise.
3.) Do you have a preferred genre that you read? Is it the same as what you write?
I like SciFi/Fantasy when I have time to read, but don’t actually read much in the vampire/paranormal genre. I know the general archetype, so that’s enough for a jumping off point into my own take on things.
4.) What is the title of your book and where can it be found?
The title of the first book is Sunset, and it’s available at Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords, as well as secondary retailers through Smashwords distribution.
5.) Describe your novel in 15 words or less.
Vampire thwarts terrorist attack on national television, exposing supernatural world to humanity. Gay romantic subplot.
6.) Where did the inspiration for your story come from?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
7.) How long did it take you to complete this novel from concept to published?
I came up with the concept in 1999, but didn’t write it down until October 2009. The first draft was completed in December 2009, and the first edition was published in ebook form in March 2011, after a year of editing and four major drafts (and a host of minor revisions).
8.) When you sit down to write, how does that process go? Do you outline or just let it evolve?
I outline the entire story in my head first, then create a plot flowchart to keep myself on track. As new ideas occur to me, I update the chart to reflect the new direction.
9.) Are there any aspects of writing you struggle with?
Setting and characterization. I also don’t write graphic sex scenes, which is a departure from the other books in my genre.
10.) Are there any aspects that you simply glide through?
I am better at plot and dialogue, so I write those first, before going back to insert the rest of the scene details.
11.) What sets your book apart from others in the same genre?
My fantasy world is relatively complex, and its a blend of fantasy and science fiction.
12.) What is the location of your story setting and why did you choose that place/time?
The story is set at various locations on Earth, as well as on the moon and in Earth orbit. It takes place in the near future, beginning in 2040.
13.) Your main characters, tell me about them. What is their back story? How did they find themselves where they are now?
My main character is Nick, a Daywalker, i.e. a vampire that has accepted a specific mystical cure for vampirism and been redeemed. He lives in a secret world of vampires and vampire slayers, which is split between North America (where a truce between the various factions is currently in place) and the rest of the world (where the two sides remain at war). This world and the human world collide when he publicly intervenes to block a terrorist attack and exposes his civilization to humanity.
14.) I’d like to know more about your book. Tell me all about it.
It’s cross-genre fiction, being part gay paranormal romance, part urban fantasy, and part science fiction. The world is complex and detailed, which for some is a turn-off, while others find it richly immersive.
15.) What do you want readers to take from your writings?
I want them come away satisfied that I told an entertaining story, and told it well.
16.) Are more books to follow or is this a stand alone?
There are currently three novels and two novellas in the series, with the fourth novel slated to come out sometime in March.
17.) Where can readers find you?
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/pactarcanum
Goodreads Profile: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4759071.Arshad_Ahsanuddin
Twitter Handle: @pactarcanum
Kindle version: http://www.amazon.com/Sunset-Pact-Arcanum-ebook/dp/B005SIXXB2
Smashwords edition (multiple formats): http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/61128
Video Trailer: http://youtu.be/zdvchNFqSu4
18.) What are 3 random things about yourself that readers might like to know.
I like Kaluha and milk; I still listen to turn-of-the millennium pop music; and I am terrified of any creature that doesn’t have zero, two or four legs.
19.) What do you do in your down time? For fun.
I play on the Internet, mostly. I used to be more active as an amateur photographer, and some of my work can be seen at http://Arshad_Ahsanuddin.imagekind.com.
20.) How about letting me have a sneak peek at chapter one?
The first ten chapters are posted on Wattpad.com, as a free taste of the series:http://www.wattpad.com/user/ArshadAhsanuddin.