Name: Ian Ségal
Age: As old as my tongue, and a few years older than my teeth.
Where are you from: From the suburbs northwest of New York City
Born in New York City, to a master jeweler and artisan (and former actor and model), and a homemaker (who was also a former jewelry and clothing designer). Ian’s parents emigrated to the United States from Europe, his father from Bucharest, Romania, and his mother from Lyon, France. His mother, had always tried to instill upon him her hopes that he would one day either become a doctor, preferably a plastic surgeon, or a corporate attorney for a Fortune 500 company. Neither profession seemed to cultivate the passion that was dormant within him. Ian was raised from childhood in a comfortable upper middle class suburb of New York City. He shared his mother’s affinity for reading, and was soon consumed by such authors as Leon Uris, James Michener, Sidney Sheldon, Jeffrey Archer, Piers Anthony, Douglas Adams, Ian Fleming, John Le Carré, Tom Clancy, Frederick Forsythe, Barbara Taylor Bradford (a somewhat forced suggestion by Ian’s mother, but a welcomed surprise), and ultimately J.R.R. Tolkien (again, the introduction made to him by his mother as she opened his eyes to what appeared to be a less than attractive, dusty and timeworn, hardbound book from the local library, The Hobbit).
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I anticipate releasing book one of my dark fantasy epic series, Castling the Crowns, later this year. The series will be comprised of eight books which will pull the reader into a non-typical fantasy world filled with drama, thrills, suspense, love, romance, betrayal, and plenty of nail-biting festooned in ribbons of wonderment.
In parallel, I will also be working on the delivery of a young adult dystopian series, title to be determined. This series is being written to not only capture the YA audience, but the adult market as well.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
Even as a child, my imagination had soared through the sky with the grace and boldness of an eagle in flight, always endeavoring to climb greater heights, and forever believing that I was destined for something beyond the cookie-cutter mold that society would shape me into. In my early days, those dreams escorted me to faraway kingdoms, swinging a sword of proven steel and courage. Other visions found me casting the utterance of a spell, all for the virtuous quest of rescuing a fair maiden of uncompromising beauty and splendor from an evil that was far greater than anyone could fathom. I carried, even at an early age into my teens, all of these visualizations onto the canvas of parchment, scribbling down the color of my mind into my earliest manifestation of the creation of prose. I found that I was always triumphant when battling my foes, and conquering their empires, on the landscapes of a world unlike the serene and tranquil suburban town I grew up in.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Very early on during my adolescent years when I found my writing implement running ahead in a race with my imagination.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
After reading a book that captured my senses, I too wanted to emulate the conjured allure of the author’s wand. The author was J.R.R. Tolkien. The book was The Hobbit. And I was 11 years old.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I am for the most part, a third person writer, quite the narrator, but a story teller who doesn’t share the tale from the outside, but invites the reader to step inside its pages, and live the tale with pulsating breaths and skips of the heart.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Castling the Crowns, the title of my epic series, is a play on a classic move in the game of chess, in which a strategic move is made to protect one’s king.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
No, I’m not a preacher of gospel, but I do subliminally try to push the reader’s mind to think beyond their noesis of their traditional thinking.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic ?
Are we measuring realism against what is in my mind? Then it’s all ‘spot on.’ <<Ian guffaws>>
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I am every character in my book, with slivers shaved off from life’s trials and tribulations that have weathered the face of who I am today.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Centennial, Master of the Game, Kane and Abel, The Jackal, Six Days of the Condor, The Stand, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Exodus, Windmills of the Gods, Smiley’s People, The Hunt for Red October
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Half a King by Joe Abercrombie
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Fiona: What are your current projects?
Completing book one (title undisclosed) of my Castling the Crowns epic series – will just call it ‘Crowns One’ for now, as well as a young adult dystopian series that I’m writing in parallel.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
My best friend of well over 30 years.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
It can be, but to quote George R.R. Martin, “Writing is a career for gamblers.”
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Haha, of course! Every time I revisit a page or a chapter, I find myself constantly changing the landscape of my writing – there’s always room for making a story more riveting than it was yesterday.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I was truly captivated by the raconteurs of our past. You and I know who they are I’ll simply refer to them as the artifacts of the literary world. To me, they’re wizards that cast spells with quills in place of wands.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
There’s a plethora of teasers plastering the Internet highway right now, but I will offer you this: the story can somehow be described as Raiders of the Lost Ark meets Stephen King’s, The Stand
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Not really. It’s quite simple. I open the veins of my emotions, and spill the inkwell of my imagination onto the parchment.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I can’t say I have a single favorite that stands out among the rest, but the authors that share my fondest memories were James Michener, Frederick Forsythe, Albert Camus, J.R.R. Tolkien, Leon Uris, Sidney Sheldon, Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft, John Le Carré, Umberto Eco, and Jeffrey Archer (no particular order here).
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Only inside the world of my unfolding imagination.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Still working with different graphic designers on this effort – TBD.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Escaping the realities of life that somehow always try to challenge a writer for a timeshare inside his or her thoughts.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Yes – there’s nothing more grand than twisting conventional thinking so tight, that traditional philosophy is challenged as authoritative.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Never be mechanical – writing is an art form. It’s how we paint with words. If a writer becomes mechanical with his or her prose, he or she might as well be painting by numbers.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Fasten your seatbelts, and when ‘that’ chapter nose dives you into what looks like an abyss, raise your hands in the air, scream and shout, and feel the gust of story thrills blow through your hair.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I think it may have been Frog and Toad, or something of the like. I know it wasn’t Goodnight Moon… maybe that was the second book?
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
My daughters make me laugh… I no longer cry – I’m all out of tears; my past drained my emotional cisterns.
Fiona: Is there one person past or present you would meet and why?
After reading his book, The World As I See It, I have to say that Albert Einstein is hands-down the person I would be excited to meet. This was a true in-depth look at a man beyond the genius caliber physicist he is more commonly known to be.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
“Do not follow the path, conquer the road.” It’s a powerful quote from my series, and instills upon all of us to lead our lives, and take on the life ahead of us with not just our legs, but with all our will, passion, and relentless pursuit of achieving successful outcomes.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I enjoy spending my leisure drawing, painting, cooking, and acting goofy with my Bichon Frise, Kenzie.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I’m a bit of a TV series junkie, and find myself following these shows religiously:
The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Orphan Black, and Once Upon a Time (influenced by my oldest daughter)
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
Food: Pan seared tuna encrusted in a wasabi sesame glaze
Music: I’m eclectic for the most part, and enjoy everything from classic/vintage rock to classical music, opera, and soundtracks to TV shows and films
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I began my career in the diamond jewelry industry, and later shifted into technology. I would probably revert back into technology.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
You can find me online at these sites:
- Website: IanSegal.com
- Facebook: https://Facebook.com/IanSegalAuthor
- Twitter: https://Twitter.com/INSegal
- Goodreads: https://Goodreads.com/iansegal
- Instagram: https://Instagram.com/segalian
- Blog: https://iansegal.blogspot.com