What inspired you to write this series?
Amazingly, the backbone of The Future Savior Series formed a very long time ago. What’s funny (and this will sound totally unrelated) is it all began with a love of Star Wars. I always wished George Lucas would have continued the story after Return of the Jedi. My over active imagination began concocting the story myself. Han and Leia had twins, a boy and a girl. One of them was kidnapped when they were very young by someone on the dark side and raised evil while the other remained a true Jedi. Imagine to conflict and conviction when they discovered they were brother and sister!
Obviously, things have morphed a lot since then. I think my 3 hour a day commute aided my imagination. As did my love for all things fantasy and sci-fi! During my drive (yeah, 3 hours is a long time to be in the car each day!) I began dreaming up a fantasy land, but the people had sci-fi like abilities.
I also have a huge love for Jesus and The Bible. Even before I was a follower of Jesus I enjoyed Bible stories, I was fascinated by them. Making sure these stories found their way into my own fantasy story only seemed natural. Perhaps by reading The Future Savior Series others will discover a love for them too and in turn discover Jesus.
When I read about some of the unique abilities Christina, Shaw, Rayliex, etc. have, I immediately thought X-men. What made you pick the powers that you came up with?
I am a HUGE X-Men fan! Just look at Drexton…. he’s my very own version of Gambit! As for the powers, I really can’t say what made me pick those ones in particular. I guess maybe I just thought they were cool! LOL!
Your series will contain five books at the end. So far at the end of each book there is an incredible cliffhanger. Do you plan it that way or are you equally surprised by the ending yourself?
Oh, those are all planned out. ***evil laugh*** I think my obsession with the TV show Friends helped to fuel that. At the end of each season they always left me hanging with some kind of killer cliffhanger. I hated it as much as I loved it and I COULD NOT WAIT until the next season. I think it’s only fair I torture my readers in the exact same way!
I thought it fascinating that Christina was a gym teacher, did you pick this career because of all the physical exertions that Meric would require (I know if I went to Meric and had to survive based on my physical abilities…I..would…not)?
I have to admit that Christina’s “normal” life really followed mine so much so that it’s comical. Originally, Christina started off as an English teacher. But as Christina moved through Meric I kept hitting those “physical exertions” you talked about and I realized it was detracting from the story every time I had to explain why she could do certain things. So I changed her profession to make it easier.
In my own life, I started off as an English major in college and I LOVED it, but sometimes life likes to take us down a different path for awhile. I ended up becoming a PE teacher, but I still loved my English origins… so much so writing became my hobby. And I’m pleased to announce that this is my last year teaching. I am about to become a full-time wife/mommy/writer! So it seems the English wins out in the end.
So Shaw? What came first, the picture or the man?
Oh Shaw, ***sigh*** the man came first. In fact, I made it two-thirds of the way through the first rough draft of Conception before I decided I needed a picture to aid the inspiration. It was a no brainer on who I would pick… I think he may have been tugging at the back of my subconscious anyway, but the perfect person for Shaw is the breathtakingly gorgeous Kellan Lutz.
What (or who) do you picture Christina looking like?
Trying to figure out who would be the best image for Christina has been tough. I think I’ve picked a dozen or so different actresses and then changed my mind! Currently, I really like Sarah Bolger from The Spiderwick Chronicles.
When reading the Future Savior Series I noticed a little bit of David, Esther, Job, Jonah, Battle of Jericho, Ehud, and of course Jesus in there. Do you pick the Biblical stories first or does the narrative just kind of develop that way?
Wow! I’m so glad you picked up on Ehud! I was worried nobody would find his story in there. Some of the Bible stories I know I want to use ahead of time. Esther was obviously planned out. Others sort of develop as I went along like Jonathan and his armor bearer only having one sword to defeat twenty enemies.
When your readers are finished with your books, what is the biggest thing you want them to take-away from the series?
I fully believe Christian fiction can be fantastical and edgy. I don’t know about you, but I have no desire to read books with Suzie-Bonnet-Amish-Lady on the cover. And don’t get me wrong, I’m a HUGE Chronicle of Narnia and Lord of the Rings fan (obviously), but I wished there would have been a real, in-depth romance to them. And of course, you already know about my love for super-hero stories. So, I wanted a high sci-fi/fantasy Christian story with some heavy romance to it… where was I going to find something like that? It’s not easily located on the bookstore shelves. Yep, I decided to create my own!
Admittedly, I wrote a story that I would love. But I think there are plenty of women from ages fifteen to fifty who are just like me. They want an amazing adventure story, with strong Christian morals, super-hero powers, and heart pounding romance.
For non-Christians, I hope they stumble upon The Future Savior Series and perhaps recognize one of the Bible stories in it. Maybe they run off and grab a Bible to check it out and it gets them reading God’s Word. Hey, anything that can get people to the Bible is good!
When you designed the layout of Meric, is it all in your mind? Do you draw it out? How do you keep the details together?
Actually the layout of Meric is very particular. It will be explained in even more detail in the 4th and 5th books so… stay tuned!
I know the next book doesn’t come out until December, but is there any nugget you would like to share?
Future Savior Book Four: Desecration starts off running! Within the first pages there’s an unexpected declaration of love, some new powers, a much anticipated fight and even the death of a beloved character! Buckle your seatbelt. It’s gonna be a wild ride right from the word “go”!
Once again, Thank you Ms. Hartz for being on my blog!
*Remember we still have a week left in the giveaway of the Future Savior Series Book One: Conception. Just leave a comment with your email address. Winners will be announced on June 8th!