Interview with Steve Benton

When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Usually working or flying one of my drones. I'm an FAA-certified UAS pilot, so I can charge money for aerial photography and filmography. I'll also sometimes play video games, but not so much anymore.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, it was in second grade. It was about evil "knotsy" ghosts in a submarine. You see, my father had a book, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, in his library. Being an advanced reader (but apparently not an advanced speller) I got the idea for evil knotsy ghosts, and wrote it, along with an illustration of a submarine (with a swastika) and ghosts swimming around it for a class assignment. I believe the story ended with the ghosts drowning.
Describe your desk
Hmm, let's see. It's a frost-green glass top, six feet wide, with three 24" monitors for my main computer (an Alienware Win 10 machine). I also have a MacBook Pro off to the left. Each computer has its own speaker system, so I have four speakers on the desk, and two subwoofers below. Right now the desktop is littered with various cables from peripheral devices, GoPros and other assorted crap. There's also some mail I should open. Oh, and there's a Logitech G13 gaming pad on the left - you know, one of those things where you can program macros and make your gaming more efficient...
What's the story behind your latest book?
LILI G MUST DIE, targeted toward all readers twelve and up, is the first in a series that chronicles the school adventures of the Gunnarssons' daughter, Liliana, as she navigates through homework, friendships, betrayals, crushes and a vampire infestation in her town. Later volumes will have her tackling the complexities of time travel, alternate universes and the fact that she is destined to perish and probably take billions of people with her.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
My younger daughter, actually. I used to play in an MMORPG and write little short chapter blog entries on my fictitious adventures, partially basing them on the personalities of my online friends (but mostly my imagination). My friends enjoyed reading my exploits, and then I left it alone for a while. My daughter was graduating from college and suggested I recompile my stuff into a novel, as there were a lot of places where I could self-publish my works. I've worked online since the late 90's, so it was a cinch to get everything set up. It was a lot of work, but once I made my outline I started shredding.
What do your fans mean to you?
Anyone who reads any of my books is doing something very personal - they are touching a part of my soul. That's how much I put into my writing. I feel my stories. I hear music when I read them. And I hope that they are touched, shocked, mortified, repulsed and overjoyed just like I am.
What are you working on next?
This is the cool part. Whenever I write a real world location in my books, I have to have been there; I have to know the town. I am writing a completely new novel, which I call AUgmenTISM (take out the lower case letters and do the math). it's a medical/political conspiracy thriller which ends in St. Petersburg, Russia. SO.... I'm going to Russia this summer for the 2018 World Cup Soccer tournament.
Who are your favorite authors?
Arthur C. Clarke, Michael Crichton, Ray Bradbury, Larry Niven, Ayn Rand, Isaac Asimov, George Orwell and Aldous Huxley
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Ringworld, by Larry Niven - Because it's epic! the Ringworld is unstable!
Sphere, by Michael Crichton - Suspense! And I love the time travel twist.
3001, by Arthur C. Clarke - it goes way beyond the first two books and explains the origin of the monoliths
The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury - I like how Bradbury uses a thin frame to link various unrelated short stories
Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand - Heavy duty freedom with a dose of reality, all wrapped up into a fictional setting. If the creators leave, where do we get our "stuff" from?
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I like to check the snow report for the local mountains. I also like to fly my drone around and freak people out. That's a lot of fun.
Can we ask some specific questions about LIVES OF FUTURE-PAST?
Sure, go ahead.
Why does Max build his own ship and escape Azul?
Max is totally dissatisfied with military and political leadership on his world, being smarter than most everyone else. He also has an uneasy feeling about the impending arrival of the Artusian fleet - he believes that something sinister is going to happen.
What is Max’s fascination with Machu Picchu? It’s what he names his ship, and he even goes there to hide.
Max’s nanny, Mrs. Wong, is a descendant of Chinese-Peruvians, and used to tell Max family stories passed down through the generations. His favorite was “The Adventures of Juan Carlos Wong in Machu Picchu”. He subsequently studied up on Peru, and the mythical Machu Picchu and decided that, if he ever went to Earth, Machu Picchu would be his first destination.
Max seems so good-natured. Why does Jennie want to kill him when they first meet?
Jennie’s entire existence is Azul military. She really knows nothing else, so when given orders she follows them without hesitation or compunction. She believes Max is a traitor to Azul and has gone to Earth to possibly sell SSCC technology to Earth military.
How old is King Krynos?
Krynos was born after Earth’s restoration, which occurred in the 32nd century CE. This makes him around one thousand years old.
How old is Liliana?
Not even she knows her birth date, but her age is estimated at ten years old when she first meets Jennie and Max. However, she has the mental sophistication of an adult in many ways. In LILI G MUST DIE she is listed as twelve-years old
At what age do lycans begin to suffer the change on the full moon?
There is no age in particular – it is when the youth goes through puberty, and varies for each individual.
In Max's universe, where is God?
Published 2018-03-05.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Prīmulī Prophecies Collection
Series: The Prīmulī Prophecies. Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 450,760. Language: English. Published: April 22, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Apocalyptic, Fiction » Fantasy » General
The epic saga of Max and Jennie Gunnarsson is now in one complete edition - The Prīmulī Prophecies Collection. Included are LIVES OF FUTURE-PAST, LIVES OF LOST ANGELS, LIVES OF THE PROVECTUS and an all-new bonus novella, HOW TO NOT DIE IN POST-APOCALYPTIC HOLLYWOOD.
How to Not Die in Post-Apocalyptic Hollywood
Series: The Prīmulī Prophecies. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 49,970. Language: English. Published: April 3, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Apocalyptic, Fiction » Fantasy » Urban
Kam Andreessen just got his dream job - working on the archeological dig in Machu Picchu, Peru. There he finds a special object by the river, and once he touches it he's whisked away to an apocalyptic Hollywood hell-hole. And he's stuck. Kam must earn a living and stay alive while he awaits rescue. And everyone else must stay alive when Kam finds out he is a bit more than a normal human being.
The Compendium of Imaginary Stars
Price: Free! Words: 19,400. Language: English. Published: January 9, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Military, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
Steve Benton, author of The Prīmulī Prophecies, presents a collection of his short stories previously published by OMNI Magazine: Bits 'N Pieces, Nothing but Stars in the Sky, Colorful, Slaves, Present Rewritten and Past Retold.
Lives of the Provectus
Series: The Prīmulī Prophecies. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 132,470. Language: English. Published: September 14, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Urban, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
(4.00 from 1 review)
Azul, the new home to Mankind, is on the brink. The Vrol are on their way to cleanse the galaxy of humanity, and all faster-than-light travel machinery has been deactivated. Max Gunnarsson has to somehow unite lycan forces from past, present and future and prepare to fight the insect invaders. Can they succeed in time to save their own species, as well as defeat renegade gods of the universe
Lives of Lost Angels
Series: The Prīmulī Prophecies. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 172,460. Language: English. Published: March 16, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Urban, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
(4.00 from 2 reviews)
In book #2 of The Prīmulī Prophecies, Commander Max Gunnarsson is lost in an alternate, post-apocalyptic, 29th century Los Angeles. Although there is a combination of magic and technology where he is, everything is a bit off. Draagh feels the key to finding Max might reside within the DNA of the young commander's father. But first they need to find the missing Archangel in order to even be sure
Lives of Future-Past
Series: The Prīmulī Prophecies. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 100,760. Language: English. Published: March 11, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Science fiction » Military
(3.80 from 5 reviews)
Commander Max Gunnarsson. Lieutenant Jennifer Escalante: two very similar people with very different ideas of what's right and what's wrong. When Max appropriates military technology for his own use, Jennie is part of a team of naval officers sent to bring him back to face charges of treason. And that's where it all begins.