Interview with T.L. Blankenburg

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the small Michigan village of New Lothrop. New Lothrop is also the setting for my first novel, Loper. It was a wonderful and safe community filled with great people and, most importantly, excellent teachers that gave me the gift of an education.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Loper is an adventure novel wrapped around a coming-of-age story. It is the story of Will Warren, a 17-year-old growing up in a post-depression era in which the world has made great advances in technology, mainly alternative fuels. As Will works to find his way in this world, he has a chance meeting with a reclusive uncle which sends them both on an adventure.

There are several primary ideas behind the story. The first idea is that we, as human beings, have an obligation to make this world a better place for having lived in it. This is an idea I think we all need to ponder as we look at the state of the world in which we live.

The second idea is that of power, the power humans can obtain through their achievements and the responsibility that comes with those achievements.

The third idea is that of gratitude. We are not just raised by our parents, but also by our family, neighbors, teachers, and others within the community in which we live.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I had an idea. An idea that I thought would make a good novel, and I did not want to be influenced by publishers.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords offers indie authors a great opportunity to distribute their stories to readers in an industry that is more and more controlled by large publishers. Thanks to Smashwords for all their work!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love those moments when you have been working for hours and hours and then you come up with that one great sentence or paragraph that is beautiful and expresses your idea in a unique and fresh way, propelling your story forward.
What are you working on next?
I'm working on a historical fiction novel. The main character is actually my great-great-great grandfather who was a veteran of the War of 1812 and a circuit riding preacher. I am creating a fictional story around the real events of his exceptional life.
Who are your favorite authors?
Kurt Vonnegut is my favorite. I'm also a fan of Ayn Rand, Neal Stephenson, Shakespeare, Ernest Hemingway, Dan Brown, and Ray Bradbury.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Everyday we step out into a brave new world and we have a choice to make it either better, or worse.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I spend time with my lovely wife biking, running, and enjoying all the beauty this world has to offer.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I remember reading "Harrison Bergeron" by Kurt Vonnegut at a very young age. This greatly influenced my reading of dystopian stories and the influence of government on society.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I love reading on my iPad. I have the iReader app as well as Kobo, Kindle, and Nook apps.
Published 2013-08-31.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Loper
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 77,160. Language: English. Published: July 22, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Action, Fiction » Coming of age
An adventure novel wrapped around a coming-of-age story. Young Will Warren seeks adventure and struggles to find his way in the small town of New Lothrop, Michigan.