Interview with Kirsten Nimwey

What is The Explorers?
The Explorers is the first novel manuscript I wrote in fantasy and adventure genre. This is the story of 14 chosen men entrusted to become the possessors of 14 long-lost elements of the great king and god to save the world from tribulation, disorder, and chaos.
How long did you write The Explorers?
It took me five (5) long years to finish the novel. Though I was a student when I started to write the novel, time management played an important part to study and to focus on the story behind the novel.
What/Who inspires you to write The Explorers?
The novel was inspired by J. R. R. Tolkien's novel and Peter Jackson, the man behind the trilogy and the blockbuster movie "The Lord of the Rings". The twist and turns of the story and the cinematography of the movie added up and gave me an idea to write a novel with almost the same twist but different concept.

The other fantasy video games series that inspires me too is the "Final Fantasy series". The genre of this game series got my attention and interest to write my own fantasy novel.
When did The Explorers start and end?
I started to write The Explorers, Volume One (1) on December 2006 and finished the whole six (6) volumes in 2011.
How did "The Explorers" came up and got its name?
This is an unforgettable memory of mine because even the title itself came from an unforgettable history in an unexpected events.

I was in third grade back then when my Science teacher gave our class a simple group activity that each group should have their own group names. Our group leader (I still remember her name) named our group as "Explorers", because our group activity was about searching common living things by exploring the school yard and we had to discuss it in front of the class. That group name never went off in my mind until I reached my teenager life. Then, I decided to use this name as the title of my novel when I began to write it for the first time!

I began to write the first volume last December 2006 in a composition notebook. That time, I was only 16 years old. But before I wrote the manuscript, I made a short comic version of The Explorers that I'd been working on for almost two months. The comic was illustrated by only pen and paper, and with 20-sheets of drawing book. For me, making comic strips were only my fun thing to do because while I write the dialogues, I also illustrate. This is what I enjoyed most especially when I had some free time at home except my college days, until I finished the first comic. It was supposed to be in the series too, but I decided not to continue my comic works anymore and began to write novel version of it instead. Then, I wrote the first volume of the same title in my first composition notebook. Still, writing stories was also my fun thing to do, like writing a diary day by day... What everything appeared in my mind was translated to the story. Before, I intended to keep it secret and for my eyes only. I didn't have any plan to show it to everyone because I was so much worried that my readers might laugh at my works as well as my drawings (that's why no one knew I'd been writing the story all the time, even my own family as well). But everything changed when I once tried to bring my notebook and showed it to some of my classmates in college and they read it. Unexpectedly, they gave me positive feedbacks and they loved the story. They kept on asking the other volumes of my novel. That was also the same thing I heard from my younger sister's high school classmates when she tried to bring my Volume One notebook without my knowledge. I was very grateful by their very nice comments, until one of my younger sister's classmate sent me a surprise letter with his illustration of The Explorers' main protagonist, telling me that I was his inspiration to write his own story works too. I was really happy that time... though the acceptance was good and bring forth high hopes, still the manuscript was kept in my book shelves.

But days, weeks, and months passed by as I still continued to write down the manuscript, I was working on with my fourth volume (that is the fourth notebook). I realized that I have been writing the novel for a very long time and I'd also been put lots of efforts to it. I sometimes asked myself, where would my novel be heading? Why would not show my creativity to everyone and let the general public judge my creations? If I continued to keep hiding all of my manuscripts even if I write over a hundred volumes, then everything will be useless and my efforts will be in vain... And I don't want that to happen!

That's why I decided not to keep the story anymore and I want the whole world reads it. I finally finished the story in 2011 into separate 6 volumes, and I re-typed the volumes in preparation for publication. This time, I am never ashamed with my works and also don't want to be a pessimist anymore. I want to let the world sees my works. At least, I let them see the best thing I can do. Because I have BIG dreams... And that's it!

I still have my six (6) composition notebooks of The Explorers in my possesion and they are in my study desk with my original handwriting. Those are the best souvenirs I have in my whole life!
How did The Explorers characters form? How did you design the characters?
Another unforgettable memory of mine. I was only ten (10) when I drew my first cartoon character. I think you might know who is the first The Explorer character I designed...

I was in fifth grade when I became a video game enthusiast. My father bought me a Playstation console as a gift for my 10th birthday. I became very much interested in games and I loved the game characters that were designed by the professional video game designers. That time, I was a Bloody Roar 2 fan (and I played that game all the time!). Bakuryu, one of the characters of that game caught my attention and became interested in him... He became my first inspiration to design a character. The first character designed was very similar to him and I named him as "Kenji". Kenji's name also came from Bakuryu's nickname from Bloody Roar 2, and this made Kenji became my first ever designed character. As years passed by, my Kenji's design was improving, until he's no longer Bakuryu look-alike anymore unlike my first designs. Finally, I gave him his own full name as Kenji Foster.

Claude's history is also the same to Kenji's and he is the second character I designed. Claude's design was inspired by Ryu from Street Fighter, which was also one of my favorite game. If you see my portrait illustration of Claude, you might notice his resemblance to Ryu. Well, his design is improving too and he changed a lot, but I retained his red headband as an inspiration of Ryu.

Shingue is my third character, but he doesn't have any inspirations so I designed him by my own. These three were my first characters, then I named their group as The Explorers. After Kenji, Claude, and Shingue, more characters were designed later on and were also added to their group.

Like Shingue, the rest of the main characters were also designed by my own that popped up in my mind.
In what ways did you write The Explorers in the first place?
The six volumes were originally written in six separate composition notebooks in Filipino language. The notebooks were in my own personal handwriting by both black and red ink ballpens. Each chapter has its freehand illustrations (2-3 illustrations) by pencil only.

The novel was first written in Filipino, few Japanese, and few English. Some part of the novel had Japanese dialogues because that time I was studying Japanese language and I applied the Japanese words I learned while writing the novel. But as I revised the whole story, I removed all Japanese phrases and words to my novel that are not relevant in the story.
What is the genre/theme of The Explorers novel?
The novel is an anime-themed manuscript, meaning that the characters are in anime style. The genre of the novel is purely fictional and fantasy.
Published 2018-03-01.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Bullet With A Name (Tagalog Edition)
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 66,030. Language: Tagalog (Filipino). Published: April 15, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Action, Fiction » Adventure » General
Paghihiganti. Kapootan. Tiwala. "Hinding-hindi siya titigil hanggang sa matagpuan na niya ang mamamatay-tao..." Ang Bullet With A Name ay ang bagong action-adventure na nobela ni Kirsten Nimwey. Ito ang kuwento ng isang Mafia Soldier na si El Sicario, na naghahangad ng hustisya matapos patayin ng isang misteryosong mamamatay-tao ang kanyang mga magulang noong 1990.
Silent Shadows (Tagalog Edition)
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 69,570. Language: Tagalog (Filipino). Published: January 1, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Dark, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Ang Silent Shadows ay ang bagong dark fantasy na libro ni Kirsten Nimwey. Ito ang spin-off ng kanyang nobelang serye, The Explorers na kung saan ay kabilang dito si Reinhardt Foster na isang Darkness Wielder. Sa nobelang ito ay may espesyal siyang pagganap bilang isang shadowless Grim Reaper na nagngangalang Rei.
The Explorers Series Box Set (Tagalog Edition)
Series: The Explorers (Tagalog Edition). Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 360,240. Language: Tagalog (Filipino). Published: September 7, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Adventure » Action
"Kapag ang tadhana ng mundo ay nakataya... may isang bagong lahi ng mga mandirigma ang darating..." Ang The Explorers Series (Tagalog Edition) Box Set ni Kirsten Nimwey ay ang koleksyon ng mga libro ng The Explorers series. Kasama rito ang: 1. The Explorers 2. The Explorers: King Maximillian Ang box set na ito ay mayroon lamang sa wikang Filipino. Wala itong print edition.
The Explorers: King Maximillian (Tagalog Edition)
Series: The Explorers (Tagalog Edition), Book 2. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 164,760. Language: Tagalog (Filipino). Published: March 23, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Ang The Explorers: King Maximillian ay kasunod ng The Explorers ni Kirsten Nimwey. Ang kuwento ay nangyari pagkalipas ng pitong taon nang matapos ang unang libro, kung saan nalaman ng mga Wielders na may isang maalamat na mandirigma ang mapapalaya at muling isisilang pagkatapos ng 25 taon nitong pagkakabilanggo sa ilalim ng kapangyarihan ng Great Seal.
The Explorers (English Edition)
Series: The Explorers (English Edition), Book 1. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 218,210. Language: English. Published: November 3, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Adventure » Action
"When the world's fate is at stake… a new breed of warriors will come…" Note: This book is the English Edition. Read the long description for more details.
The Explorers (Tagalog Edition)
Series: The Explorers (Tagalog Edition), Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 198,320. Language: Tagalog (Filipino). Published: September 6, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Adventure » Action
"Kapag ang tadhana ng mundo ay nakataya... may isang bagong lahi ng mga mandirigma ang darating..." Tandaan: Ang aklat na ito ay ang orihinal na Tagalog Edition. Basahin ang mahabang deskripsyon para sa higit pang mga detalye.