Welcome to very late edition of THE WRITER’S LOUNGE! Tonight we have a very talented Fantasy writer that has gained a rather nice following for his current series. But first. . .
Martin Page ~ “In The House of Stone and Light”
THE WRITER’S LOUNGE PRESENTS:
CHARLES E. YALLOWITZ
WRITER ~ AUTHOR
F. Kenneth/W.L: I like to start each interview with the readers getting to know you a little. I know you have a son that keeps you going, is there a “Mrs. Yallowitz”? What part of New York are you from?
Charles: I am married and coming up on the 10 year anniversary of us not killing each other. I’m originally from Long Island, which is that forked island that people keep thinking is part of New York City. . .I moved back to my hometown soon after my son was born to be closer to family, so it’s like I can’t get away.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Congrats on the upcoming anniversary! I share your feeling of not being able to get away – I feel like that quite a bit myself. In your bio, you mentioned your son keeps you busy with “adventures”, how old is he? Is he the only child?
Charles: He’s 5 and an only child. Right now that’s enough since he’s a handful. The adventures tend to be very loud and disruptive to those of us that work from home. As the stay-at-home parent, I’m not sure I could handle two rugrats rushing around.
F. Kenneth/W.L: I could relate, the littlest and youngest ones are often the loudest. So you like to cook when you’re not writing, what are some of your other hobbies outside of writing?
Charles: I don’t have as many hobbies as I used to. Video games got too expensive and fencing fell by the wayside due to being busy. I do want to get back into making jigsaw puzzles. . .for now, I just read or do whatever the kid wants to do, which lately is smacking a balloon back and forth. Guess you can say I’m boring outside of my imagination.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Fencing? Creating jigsaw puzzles? Those are pretty interesting hobbies. As a cook, what’s your favorite and/or best dish?
Charles: The first one I’ve ever been taught is definitely my best. It’s a homemade Vodka Sauce with store bought pasta. Tastes even better after a day of sitting in the fridge. Recently, I started making this dish and then adding it to a pizza crust. It’s definitely my ‘go to’ recipe when I want to impress somebody. My regular Lasagna, Taco Lasagna, and Bourbon Chicken recipes aren’t bad either. Though everything I get is from cookbooks, friends, and the internet so I can’t really say they’re mine.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Sounds like some pretty good dishes! Does your son have a favorite dish he loves for you to cook?
Charles: He’s currently in the finicky eater stage. Mac & Cheese and Pizza Sticks are his big meals with fast food chicken nuggets as a special treat. He’s always been a picky eater, so this is actually a step in the right direction.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Yeah, they can be like that at that age. You’ve also lived in Florida – then moved back to NY? Was it really because of alligators? Lol!
Charles: We lived there for 4.5 years and came back due to my wife having a post-partum breakdown. I was the stay-at-home and she was working, but her issues made it hard for her to function at the job. Because of her growing OCD and issues, I couldn’t leave her home all day with the baby either. So we moved back to NY while we had the money. . .and I had a better chance of finding something in NY than Florida. . .She’s back to working now though and I’m trying to make the writing a full-time career. . .As for the alligators, there are a lot of warning signs about them. Though I never saw one in the wild. To be honest, I never really wanted to. Prefer to have some type of barrier between us. Same goes for sharks.
F. Kenneth/W.L: You gotta do what’s best for the family, no matter how anyone else may look at things or perceive the situation – it’s not for them to assess.
Tell us how did you get into writing? Was it something that’s always been in you?
Charles: I have always loved writing and telling stories. It never came up as a career until high school when I’d given up on being a zoologist. People told me it can involve blood and that kind of turned me off to it. Anyway, I read ‘The Books of Lost Swords’ by Fred Saberhagen in high school and it sparked my desire to be an author. I’ve been forging my fantasy world ever since while submitting to publishers. Then I went into the world of indie authors, so now I’m finding out that there’s a lot more work to this than my teenage self realized.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Exactly, I didn’t realize how much work goes into writing until after I self-published my first book – Before that, I used to always think the hardest part was getting published – But the real work doesn’t start until after the book’s published.
Do you write in any other genres, or are you pretty set on Fantasy?
Charles: I write poetry from time to time and have dabbled in a few other genres. I put out a horror novella and a post-apocalyptic/fairytale novella as experiments. The second one did better than the first. I’m probably going to be staying in Fantasy for my entire career because it’s where I put the most amount of work. Most of my stories link to each other to give Windemere a thick net of mythology that really flushes the world out. So I have a lot invested in that one genre for now.
F. Kenneth/W.L: It’s hard to venture off some, when you have that ‘special’ project, I’m kinda like that about my Sci-Fi book. I follow you here on WP, and I’ve read quite a few of your posts for “Legends of Windemere”, where did the idea for the series come from?
Charles: The series was born from a Dungeons & Dragons game that I was in during my early college years. I played Luke Callindor and thought it was a fun story, so I asked if everyone would be okay with me writing books off the game. Everyone said yes and I became the group scribe, which wasn’t as easy as I thought. Reading back on my notes, I assumed my older self to understand my shorthand. To this day, I’m not sure how several of the traps in the later books were supposed to work.
Looking back, I can’t say the original idea went the way I expected since it was only going to be one of many worlds that I created. Windemere gradually rolled into the major epic that I’m doing now and eventually absorbed the other series I had at the time. It was when I started writing the first book, “Beginning Of A Hero”, that I realized the books couldn’t follow the game exactly, which caused a major change in focus.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Interesting. I think everyone knows about D&D. Dungeons & Dragons is an all-time classic! Now, “Curse of the Dark Wind” is the latest book in the series, right? Tell us a little about it.
Charles: This is the 6th book in the series and involves the heroes searching for the second champion temple. It returns the spotlight to Luke Callindor, who is the longest running hero out of the group. He gets infected by the Dark Wind, which is a sentient curse created by a sadistic villain that wants to use Luke as a hostage. The real target is, Nyx the Caster, who the villain wants to control as a weapon. So the others are struggling to keep Luke alive while protecting Nyx from an enemy that they have always barely survived. The story has a few old faces and mystery character show up too, which sets the groundwork for the upcoming release “Sleeper of the Wildwood Fugue”.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Sounds like a nice storyline. How many books do you anticipate for the series?
Charles: The series is slated for 15 books to give every character a chance to shine and evolve. One of the books focuses on a few villains too. This is the longest series I plan on writing and I’m using it to establish a lot of Windemere to help with future stories. I’ve been told that the series is too long, but I’ve chopped stuff down before and this is where it stopped. Every story helps evolve these heroes and bring the reader closer to understanding what makes them tick.
F. Kenneth/W.L: I admit, 15 books to a series is quiet lengthy, but I’m also a strong believer in writing until the story is done, whether that be 1 book or 20 books.
I’ve seen some of the character sketches for the “Legends of Windemere” Series – pretty cool. Who does the artwork?
Charles: My cover art is done by Jason Pedersen. Another artist offered to do character pictures for the major cast, which I use on my blog for character-specific posts. Her name is Kayla Matt. I’m always hoping to see fan art of my books, but haven’t received much. One of my favorite questions for readers is who their favorite character is and getting an idea of how the visual comes across.
F. Kenneth/W.L: Where can readers find books from the “Legends of Windemere” Series?
Charles: All of my books are on Amazon and can be found under KDP Unlimited as well.
F. Kenneth/W.L: I’d like to thank Charles E. Yallowitz for joining us today at THE WRITER’S LOUNGE! You’re always welcomed here!
Connect with Charles E. Yallowitz
Thank you all for coming in tonight, join us again next at THE WRITER’S LOUNGE! Taking us out tonight…
The Gap Band ~ “Outstanding”
COMING TO THE WRITER’S LOUNGE
Jason Davis ~ Apr. 10th
Lorene Stunson ~ Apr. 17th
Susan Parker Rosen ~ Apr. 24th