Carey Green is a retired Pastor turned author, multipreneur (he just has too many ideas), and marriage and family coach. He's married ever-so-happily and has 5 kids, a wonderful daughter-in-law, and two grand-boys. He lives in the mountains of Colorado and never, ever wants to move again. He's written a handful of non-fiction works centered around Christian growth but most recently has taken a step into the fiction world with his first novel in a 3-novel series, Dragon Slayer: Beginnings.
And he’s here today to chat about that first novel.
Welcome Carey. Please tell us about your current release.
Dragons have been forgotten, relegated to the realm of legend and myth. But tales of horror circulate among the common people. Rumors of their attacks float on the night wind. They are a fearsome presence that haunts the memories of the old and the nightmares of the young.
They are forgotten, but they are not gone.
The dragon masters wait, a dark force lurking in the shadows of every land.
They will have their opportunity. They will rise.
A young boy is stripped violently from his family and thrust into the conflict between dragon masters and feudal lords. Through tragedy and loss Hon is swept into the conflict while battling the fear and pain that grips his own soul.
Dragon Slayer: Beginnings is a story of life and the growth of faith in the midst of loss. It’s about the battle every person goes through to become more than their past has destined them to be.
He is the first. He will be the best. He is the Dragon Slayer.
What inspired you to write this book?
For years I've told my kids stories at bedtime, on road trips, whenever… all right from my head. The dragon slayer stories are some of those that my kids have urged me to put into print for years. I finally listened to them and Dragon Slayer: Beginnings is the first fruit of those efforts. But more than that, I believe in the power of fiction. I know from my own experience that a story well told that includes significant truths about life, faith, and people can change a person's life. I endeavor to make my writing THAT kind of writing.
As Hon awoke, the sky outside his window was dark, but the room was as bright and hot as if it were mid-day. His hair and night clothes were soaked with sweat.
His bleary eyes were drawn to the wall opposite his bed, where flames danced atop it, quickly consuming the thatched roof. The darkness of the night sky showed through the flames. He thrust himself backward into the corner of the room, only to feel the heat of rising flames as they came through the wall behind him. As he leapt over his pallet toward the closed door, he could hear his Mamma frantically screaming his name and the faraway shouts of the men of the village. The six-year-old boy began to cry.
He climbed over the smoking, thatch-strewn quilts of his parents' bed. Patches of burning straw dotted the floor. The room was growing brighter and hotter by the second. Gripping the door pull, he tugged, finding it unusually difficult to open. Trying again with all his strength, the door suddenly swung free.
It was in the midst of this chaos that he first heard the sound, a piercing screech that filled his heart with fear. It seemed to be right above him, but within the fire as well.
Without thinking, Hon began running for the front door of the cottage. Debris showered over him as he dodged his way through the blazing room. Fright drove him over the hot embers on the floor; he didn’t feel the blisters that were rising on his feet. Suddenly, he was through the front door of the cottage, his face blackened and his bedclothes smoking. He ran like a frightened deer, away from the house and the terrifying sound above it. He came to a stop by the well in the center of the town square.
The pain of the burns on his feet awoke him to the reality of the chaos about him. Tears flowed again as he took in the scene. People were shouting, running, seeking cover. Most buildings were in varying degrees of flame. Wood popped and hissed, smoke filled the air. He picked out his Mamma's slight figure through the crowd. She was back across the square, turned away from him. She knelt in the dirt in front of their flaming cottage, her head hung low. In his terror, Hon had run right past her.
The sound pierced his ears again, coming from the dark sky above the square. A second sound accompanied it; a powerful, pulsing, whooshing sound that drew closer each second. His Mamma turned her head away from it, hands over her ears and eyes clenched shut. Hon's only thought was to be with her so he began another mad dash, straight toward her.
The sky erupted with fire and a building to his right burst into flames. The blast knocked him to the ground. He suddenly felt strong, rhythmic bursts of cool night air pulsing down onto his head. A chill overtook his small body as the black sky seemed to descend upon him. Down came a hulking, scaly, red beast, gracefully lighting on the dusty ground immediately in front of him.
The creature was huge, towering at least fifteen feet higher than his childish frame. Its muscular legs were like tree trunks, its body covered in impenetrable rows of rock-hard scales. It was a legend come to life, a monster to strike fear into the bravest heart.
Hon could see his Mamma's cowering form as he looked through the widely spread legs of the dragon. Instinctively, he made his way toward her again, choosing a path directly through the legs of the beast. Just as he emerged from underneath the massive body, his Mamma's eyes met his.
"Hon! Hon, no!"
As he darted toward her a lightning fast thrust of the dragon's strong fore-claw plucked him from the ground, midstride. With a screech of triumph the beast rose to its full height, violently shaking its head from side to side as flames spewed from its mouth.
Though he could no longer see her, Hon heard his Mamma's voice again.
Swinging around to face her, the dragon focused its attention on his Mamma. She screamed at the beast.
"Let him go, you devil!"
Reaching for stones and pieces of smoking wood, she pelted the dragon with one measly object after another, each one emphasizing a different word.
"Let… him… Go!"
Enraged at her pitiful assault the dragon advanced. In one stride it towered above her like a mountain. Mouth wide and teeth bared, it roared fiercely into her face. She turned to run, but found nowhere to go. Behind her was the burning remains of their home and in front of her was the dragon. Spinning around she glanced from Hon, to the dragon, and back again. Mother and son locked eyes and tears began to flow. The dragon swiped viciously at the woman and she flew limply through the air, landing in a heap 50 feet away, at the far side of the square.
As the beast turned, a shower of arrows and rocks peppered its rough hide. The men of the village had gathered themselves to make a defense. Hon saw his Papa in the front ranks, notching an arrow and letting it fly. Their missiles bounced from the monster's scaly hide, causing no harm at all. It roared in defiance and, with a quick twist of its mighty body, swept its tail across their small company, sending men flying like dust in a gale.
Suddenly, Hon was rising, high above the blazing village. The men below were picking themselves up from the ground, and some did not move at all. His Papa was running toward the blacksmith's shop. Hon craned his neck to find his Mamma. Her still form lay motionless on the far side of the square. The beast rose higher, circling the town as if taunting the helpless villagers. The sound of its mighty roar echoed through the valley. Hon wept, helpless and afraid as he soared high above his home.
A quick gust of wind blew against his cheek and he heard a loud "thwap," just to his left. Something wet and sticky fell across his burnt arm and the dragon screamed, and lurched to one side. A short, thick shaft protruded from the base of the dragon's neck. Far below, his Papa was frantically trying to load a crossbow while two other men ran out of the blacksmith's shop with crossbows of their own. With a screech of pain, the dragon began to climb higher into the dark sky.
The wind violently whipped Hon's night clothes as the rhythm of the huge, bat-like wings grew faster. The pair rose higher, above the clouds, into the starlit night, the boy clutched tightly in the dragon's bony claw.
The compressing grip of the dragon's claw caused Hon’s head to pound and his breath to become short. As the wind blew harder and colder against his face, he gasped for air, unable even to cry. His thoughts became a jumble, fading as he lost consciousness... flames... Mamma... the dragon… Papa... pain... the sound...
Then all was silent.
What exciting story are you working on next?
I'm working on book #2. Hopefully, it will be published by Thanksgiving 2014.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I guess I first thought of myself as a writer when I realized that the curriculum I'd created for church classes was actually a form of writing. It's taken me a bit longer to believe that I could do this as part of "what I do" to make a living, though.
Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
No, I don't write full time (though I'm always writing something, even in my other lines of work). I'm also a marriage and family coach (www.ChristianHomeandFamily.com), a podcast producer (www.PodcastFastTrack.com) and an online course creator (www.PassTheSafeExam.com), as well as a mortgage loan broker in the state of Colorado. I'm self-employed for the most part so I do my best to schedule writing into my work schedule every day.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
A quirk… hmmmm. Let me see. I often type exactly what I'm thinking when asked questions like this one. I think it's an example of what Dawson Trotman once said, "Thoughts disentangle themselves when they flow from the lips or the fingertips." I guess for me it's the fingertips.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A professional baseball player. But by the time I was 15 I realized that I didn't have the raw talent to accomplish it, which was OK. Really, it was.
Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I love to interact with my readers. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or by commenting on my Facebook page or website or Google+ (I really, REALLY love Google+).