Steven Rudy lives in Colorado with his wife and three kids. After almost two decades in the field of architecture working on historical projects and designing buildings, Steven chose to finally pen his debut epic fantasy novel. The Binding Tempest is a lifetime’s creation finally come to fruition.
CONNECT WITH STEVEN
Welcome to SPFM, Steven! Since we already have your bio, describe yourself in three words.
Thoughtful, Quiet, Creative
Summarize your book, The Binding Tempest, using one gif.
If you could recommend three self-published books, which would you choose and why?
I wish I had the time to read more, but living in the circus I call home, with three children under the age of 10 running around. Finding time to read is very difficult.
PATERNUS: RISE OF GODS BY DYRK ASHTON. It creates an intriguing reality that’s familiar and new at the same time. It’s well-crafted and delivers a story that has action but also depth.
NEVER DIE BY ROB J HAYES. This thing beats and swirls with an effortless world building and characters that are fun to read.
BLOOD SONG BY ANTHONY RYAN Obviously it was fairly quickly picked up by an imprint, but this book made me realize self-publishing something great was possible. I was going through every fantasy book I could find at the time. The entire series is fantastic, but I was blown away by the structure of the novel. It invests the reader so much and delivers one of the best last quarters of a book. It also felt very cinematic.
What is your favorite part, and your least favorite part of self-publishing?
The way I work and create, If I’m working on something from conception to finished product. I have to finish, before I can move on. For a book that meant publishing it. Essentially, I couldn’t move on to the next book until I had completed the first one and self-publishing provided that.
There are a seemingly endless number of things to do for your book and self-publishing can make you feel like you’re juggling flaming daggers, but my least favorite thing is the marketing. I’m quiet, introverted and private by nature, so social media is uncomfortable to me, as is self-promotion.
What’s the first story you ever wrote?
The first thing of any substance that I remember writing was non-fiction. When I was 9, I wrote a story for school about my great grandfather’s death and traveling out of state to the funeral. It was the moment when I realized the power of expression and the power of words. I remember my teacher being really taken by it and asking if she could share it with the class. I don’t remember my parent’s reaction, but as a father myself I can imagine it must have been a shock to them.
Who inspires you?
My children inspire me. Their enthusiasm for life, art and science and all things fantastical and mysterious is a wonder to behold. They’re energy is endlessly inspiring.
Beyond them I would say Bob Dylan. His music and words, his life’s story and art, but also his unflinching drive to live a life of expression and his ability to change and adapt and not compromise. Everything about him inspires me creatively and professionally.
Tell us about the hardest scene you’ve written. What made it so difficult?
There is a chapter at almost the three-quarter mark in my book; Chapter 29 called, “Rogues of the Apparatus”. The scene is a major changing point in the story. It is a meeting scene with all of the main characters coming together for the first time to figure out how to proceed with their quest. There was a lot of plot that was needed to be expressed in what amounts to a dialogue heavy scene with seven people in a room talking. For it to work and not drag, I figured out there had to be an equal amount of seriousness and light heartedness. Sustaining the flow of information required balancing which characters spoke when and why. It was a challenge I hope to avoid in the future. In the end, my wife did a read-aloud with me, to get it right.
How did you know you wanted to write this genre?
Science Fiction and Fantasy is predominantly the genre I read, and outside of documentaries and comedies, Sci-Fi and Fantasy is also the genre I watch on tv. So when I started writing, I was determined to write a book I wanted to read. I’m not sure how else to approach such an endeavor. That’s why the book is a genre blend and probably also why the story has a foundation of familiar tropes. I wanted to write a classic epic fantasy adventure, but one with more heart and charm than scourge and blood. I wanted the magic, mysteries and scale of fantasy, but also the gadgets and machines of Sci-fi, while also telling a story about trust, friendship and philosophies on life.
What was the best money you ever spent as a writer?
I found two great beta readers to help me. They were given the first draft. I paid each of them a little bit for their time and work. After traversing that murky, indecipherable jumble of a manuscript, they both provided invaluable feedback. I reshaped a lot of the plot and even completely rewrote a character based on their input. They also helped me have the confidence to move forward.
If The Binding Tempest were made into a movie, which actors would play your MC(s)?
This is a sneaky hard question to answer. Book one, has six MCs. Three in their 50s and three around 20 years old. The only actor that was in my mind while writing was Kurt Russell for Kovan. Kurt Russell is my all-time favorite actor, though he may be too old to play Kovan now. Below is my quick casting, but one could easily obsess over such things.
Ellaria 56: Salma Hayek
Kovan 58: Jeffery Dean Morgan
Elias 58: Keanu Reeves
Tali 20: Isabela Merced
Wade 21: Alex Saxson
Learon 20: Noah Centineo
Do you ever take random writing breaks to dance or sing? If so, when do these breaks generally occur?
As my children can attest to, I am constantly singing around the house or in the car. I am sure they find it incredibly annoying, but that’s part of the fun. I also have a guitar handy almost everywhere in the house, so I can play whenever the mood strikes me. I read somewhere that acts of random short free-form creativity can activate your brain to be more creative. So, I will make up songs on the guitar for 10 minutes; just whatever I can improvise and then I go back to writing.
About The Binding Tempest (The Luminance Saga #1)
A fallen empire, a failed republic, and a frontier of alchemy, magic and machines…
…From the ashes of the defeated Sagean Empire, a new era of advancing science has emerged, but in the war-torn cities, where the glow of gas lamps burn, evil stirs in the shadows.
Forty years after the Great War, Ellaria, a former war hero, discovers the Coalition of Nations has fallen under the control of a new Dark Lord. A Luminary with the power to control energy, has emerged to reclaim the vacated throne. With no one left to trust, Ellaria sends for help from old allies scattered across the chaotic frontier.
Now three aging veterans and a band of young rogues, are all that can protect the failing republic from the return of an evil empire. Together, their only hope lies buried with the mysteries of the past and an ancient relic called the Tempest Stone.
Immerse yourself in an epic Steampunk Saga; of magic, alchemy, airships, and ancient mysteries. The Binding Tempest is the beginning of a new Epic Sci-Fi Fantasy Series. A Classic High Fantasy Adventure injected with elements of Science Fiction and steampunk.