Interview with Jon Foyt

How might a Novel start?
A Sense of Place

By Jon Foyt
Just as in any movie or play, the stage needs to be set in order for the story to begin. Writing a novel is no different. The reader needs to see in words the sense of the place where the story is to start. That way, when the characters enter, the reader has a feeling for what they are seeing and experiencing as they react and bring the reader along with them.
Almost every location has a history, short or long, surface or depth. The characters will be aware of such background, even if the place information appears as brief as when a car or train passes by—for something is there and it is being passed by. Here is where the story line (and nascent plot) get underway, as the characters, existing in their environment, unfold.
For history references in America, local—that is specific to the stage setting—is best, but often the writer needs to paint a more historical picture, perhaps back to the Civil War, or even American independence. But only through the eyes and the mind of the main character in the process of setting the tone for his or her mood or mind set. How the character thinks of this bit of history—favorable or critical—becomes a trait of that character as he or she approaches the story line.
For examples, I cite the openings of two of my novels, The Landscape of Time and Marcel Proust in Taos. But you may differ and want to argue with me, your opinions I would welcome. jonfoyt@mac.com
Published 2013-10-04.
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Books by This Author

Time to Retire
By
Price: $3.95 USD. Words: 51,840. Language: English. Published: October 14, 2013. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Mystery and Romance abound in this novel set in an active adult retirement community. Follow local reporters, Willy (himself nearing retirement) and Sally, as they investigate the suicide of a prominent resident and the lifestyles of aging retirees.
Marcel Proust in Taos
By
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 43,960. Language: English. Published: June 25, 2013. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
A Los Alamos physicist, Christopher, retires to Taos, New Mexico to write a novel about nuclear terrorism. There he meets aspiring artist Marlene, and the two fall in love. Together they open a microbrewery and find themselves confronting terrorism of a new sort—in unmapped emotional territory
The Sculpture of Time
By
Price: $3.95 USD. Words: 49,680. Language: English. Published: July 22, 2011. Category: Fiction » Literature » Literary
Our ninth novel is a 21st century adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Winters Tale set in present-day Northern California, specifically in the exclusive Bohemian Club in San Francisco and in the equally exclusive Bohemian Grove in Monte Rio 70 miles to the north on the banks of the Russian River.
The Times of Your Life
By
Price: Free! Words: 14,400. Language: English. Published: July 3, 2011. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Short stories from a married couple who are veteran published novelists, some fiction, some non-fiction, some...well, you decide.
The Portrait of Time
By
Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 52,360. Language: English. Published: September 17, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Come to Trinidad, Colorado to witness the triptych of Natural Law, Religion and Eternal Love as a Zuni Pueblo artist vies with a cyberspace evangelist for one woman’s womb. Whose 2018 manifesto decreed the Indian War of Words? Who masterminded the Indian Casino Massacre of 2048? Who will take command in 2084?
Painted Waters—an Original Screenplay
By
Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 21,170. Language: English. Published: August 9, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
In the year 2084, Native American artist Joseph Rhodes portrays a man with vision, drive and humility. Pulitzer Prize winner Katherine Reilly likes what she sees. Cyberspace evangelist Reverend Reginald Reichard offers an unsettling apparition. Bring on the popcorn!
A Nuclear Tide—The Screenplay
By
Price: Free! Words: 17,880. Language: English. Published: July 25, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Lead character Lawrence Masterson, his career path aborted in an IBM downsizing, bounces back from despair with a grand plan to solve society's much-debated dilemma as to where to put the country’s nuclear waste. He’ll create an autonomous city-state out of the ghost town of Marathon, Texas to store the radioactive stuff. Out of site, out of mind ’til the mushroom cloud appears.
Romancing the Ruins, a Film Treatment
By
Price: Free! Words: 9,620. Language: English. Published: July 18, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Get Ready for a dramatic visual. Get Set for the authors’ film treatment based on their novel, The Architecture of Time. Go for this rollercoaster read.
Ocotillo Omen
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Price: Free! Words: 3,140. Language: English. Published: July 17, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
This short story will give you the talking points, so that on your next museum visit you can pose perceptive questions to the Curator about provenance and authenticity of the artworks. Lee Roberts will also instruct how to deal with the FBI.
The Architecture of Time
By
Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 66,980. Language: English. Published: July 14, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Worthington Rhodes, the powerful man behind the 21st century trans-continental bullet train, competes with equally-strong and charismatic woman archaeologist, Anna Ardmore, who strives to save her Southwest prehistoric Anasazi Pueblo ruins that lie in the train’s wide right-of-way
The Landscape of Time
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Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 42,990. Language: English. Published: July 11, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
You’ll cheer Millennials Josh Foreman and Maggie Sullivan as they put their heads together with African-American Ollie Davis—a protégé of the Civil Rights Movement—to remedy a modern malfeasance by staging a cooked poker game with the wrongdoer, who was bent on tarnishing the reputation of Josh’s grandfather along with the family’s legacy dating back to the early days of the Erie Canal
The Test of Time
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Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 66,400. Language: English. Published: July 6, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Feels like you’re landing on a Normandy beach in ’44 with heroine WAC Captain Betty Tillerman, US Army. Advance with her and her father, a WW I legatee, through the civilian Eisenhower military-industrial complex of the ‘50s to witness her consumer disposition that manifests into her business prowess and escape with her into the sexual revolution of the ‘60s as she reconnoiters a full life
Postage Due
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Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 65,280. Language: English. Published: June 30, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Thirty-something Toledo Squires, having made all that money, wants to do a “Bill Gates” for a little Mediterranean country emerging from the yoke of communism in 1991. Octogenarian Grace Templeton, dreaming of a royal adventure, wants to play a mean ”Mimi Rogers” Texas hold ’em in her Santa Fe retirement home. Altruism wins the day in a surprising dénouement.
Marathon, My Marathon
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Price: $2.95 USD. Words: 35,790. Language: English. Published: June 18, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Come run with these ancient, present-day and prophetic characters in an emotionally gripping race with nuclear proportions. Albion E. Shepard, an old sea captain, will oversee the tides of time for your mental critique.
Last Train from Mendrisio
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Price: $3.95 USD. Words: 78,070. Language: English. Published: June 13, 2010. Category: Fiction » Drama » American
Are Caribbean offshore trusts hiding U.S. wealth? Was billionaire Trevor Thomson killed in a mysterious fall from a Swiss train, did he jump, did he suffer a heart attack…or was he pushed? The answer is critical for Trevor’s stepson, Sam, a history professor in New Mexico and high-powered, beautiful Felicia, allegedly fathered by Trevor. Enter attorneys, bankers, trustees and even the Mafia.