Jason Wylie is an Australian author who lives in the semi-rural town of Dayboro in Queensland, Australia. Jason is a qualified process and project engineer whose hobbies include writing, reading, fabrication and working on cars in the shed.
Jason has a beautiful wife, Abbi, and two gorgeous children named Aria and Noah.
Q1: What is the name of your latest book and what is it about?
The Oracle of Malcontent is a Fantasy novel that follows the adventure of a young man “chosen” to be an apprentice of sorts to the Order-Master of Death. You join him as he explores the world of Azarth, learns about the four clandestine orders which secretly impose their will upon the world, and makes an unlikely companionship with an acid-spraying dragon! His journey also involves a little bit of well-intentioned necromancy, which might cause a bit of a headache for him. The book is set in a new world with fantastic beasts and more than a few species of poisonous flora.
Q2: How long does it take you to write a book? How long does each stage of the process usually take?
The Oracle of Malcontent is my debut novel, but I do have others completed/in the works. This one took me about three months to write the first draft (125k words), and then almost three years to get it completed. Part of the delay was waiting for a development edit to be completed. After my experience with getting this book to the printers, I think I can bring it down closer to a 12 month cycle for writing and publishing.
Q3: What is your favourite type of character to write?
Being a reasonably sarcastic person myself, I find great pleasure in writing a smart arse. The problem with writing a character like that is they tend to get themselves into trouble, and then it is up to me to work out how to get them out of their situation.
Q4: Do you mine your own life for ideas, settings and/or characters?
I have an example of this in The Oracle of Malcontent where my character arrives in a new location and finds a vendor selling a very simple meal, the equivalent of chicken and rice. The main character, Pthorn, believes he may have just stumbled upon the greatest meal of all time and thinks he could make a career out of selling it back home. I had a similar experience when I visited Turkey many years ago at a market stall in Kalkan. While I had certainly had chicken, rice and salad before many times, there was something amazing about whatever they had done to prepare it.
Q5: What is something you wish you had known earlier on it your writing career?
I have been writing for a long time, but this is my first published book. I wish that I had known earlier that I could do it and not to give up on that first draft. Whenever you get an idea for a book, write it down; do not delete it! The Oracle of Malcontent was started, with just three random chapters written, while I was on leave when my daughter was born, and it was months later that I picked it back up and kept writing.
Q6: What do you do when you find yourself in a bit of a writing rut? Is there any strategy you find works for you to help the words start flowing again?
I have recently joined a writing group where we are set a homework task. I intentionally try to write something different to my usual genre or perspective. I write in the third person, past tense in The Oracle of Malcontent, but to give my most recent writing task a more personal feel, I switched to first person and set it in a contemporary, real-world situation. This change in thinking helped me get out of the rut and keep writing, even if it wasn’t on my main project (Book 2 of the series).
Q7: It looked like you had a really successful pre-order campaign for The Oracle of Malcontent. Do you have any tips for anyone wanting to organise a pre-order campaign for their own books?
I created three versions of my book to appeal to a variety of readers. Most people who don’t know me from a bar of soap would probably go for my e-book. I ran an ad that marketed the e-book front and centre, with Kobo and Amazon prominently displayed.
I also created a paperback and a hardcover edition, each with a different cover and the hardcover features art from a local artist, Riss Gibson. These were marketed through my own channels, for sale through my website, and at local bookshops (www.blacklabelbooks and available to Australia). I purchased 36 paperbacks and 32 hardcovers and it looks like I am up for another order very soon.
Q8: How would you describe your book’s ideal reader?
The ideal reader for The Oracle of Malcontent is probably someone like me. Someone who loves the creativity and lack of real-world boundaries that comes with a fantasy world. They would also be someone with a sense of humour who doesn’t take themselves too seriously; you may find some relatable characters in this sense. Someone who also has an interest in science, as a process (chemical) engineer, I couldn’t help but throw in some scientific world-building just for fun – Don’t worry, I don’t write novels the same way that I write technical reports.
Q9: What authors or books inspire you the most?
I am an avid Sanderson fan, and I love the world-building from his Cosmere. I was undoubtedly inspired by the elegant prose of Patrick Rothfuss, although I write in a far more clear-view fashion than he does. Of all the books I have read, The Oracle of Malcontent is probably most similar to the Lightbringer series by Brent Weeks, although I must admit that the last two books of that series are still awaiting patiently for their turn in my TBR. In the last few years, I have turned my attention to indie authors; I have really enjoyed the works of Logan Leshane with her Into Ebanmoor series and I have recently discovered JA Andrews’ Keeper Chronicles. These are just two examples of the many great indie authors out there inspiring both myself and many others.
Q10: What are you currently reading?
I am on the final few chapters of Book 3 of the Keeper Chronicles by JA Andrews and will be returning to my Kindle momentarily to continue.
The Oracle of Malcontent is now available in ebook, paperback and hardback.
"You will be the balance to life, the bringer of difficult times to those who require strengthening, the final word in relieving the world of the pain of life and failure"
It's been forty years since the last Choosing in the world of Azarth. After years living as a poor farmer's son, Pthorn leaves his home, destined to be one of Assier's Chosen Four to cross the seas and discover the truth known only to a select few.
The truth is far different than that believed by the rest of Azarth and, under the guidance of the Oracle of Malcontent, Pthorn leaves as a boy and becomes an unlikely scholar. He emerges as one of the most powerful figures in Azarth with abilities and knowledge beyond his wildest imagination.
Will he use this power for good when he ventures out into the world, or will good intentions and poor decisions lead to devastating consequences?
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