Archive for May, 2012


Park Day in Nashua!

   Posted by: Dan    in Events

On (hopefully) sunny Sunday May 20th – just hours before our fundraising event in Hudson, Massachusetts – we will be visiting Greeley Park in Nashua, New Hampshire with our friends Ways to Fall to put on a concert and meet some of the fine people of New Hampshire.

From 10am to 3pm, Paul and I will be joining our wonderful NPC Jenn and providing some games for children (complete with some fantastic prizes!); the local chapter of Amtgard will be helping out with some boffer demonstrations as well for people of all ages.

We are not able to collect physical money at the site due to local regulations, but a quick visit to our donations page will help turn this into a great fundraising event! We will be available to help you find it, even right there at the park.

Can’t wait to see you there!

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Interview: Bernard Cornwell

   Posted by: Dan    in Interview

This week we continue our series on the ‘blog: interviews with speculative fiction authors and illustrators about things that matter to them and to us here in the Wayfarers. Our first interviews (with J.M. Frey and Tim Marquitz and the legendary R.A. Salvatore) were very well received and we’re ecstatic to have bestseller Bernard Cornwell with us today. If you’re new to the site, please take a moment to check out our home page and read what the Quest for the Cure is all about – raising $100,000 for cancer research and support worldwide, by doing a 500-mile trip from Belfast to Edinburgh this October using only medieval gear.

Bernard CornwellKnown best for his Sharpe series, historical writer Bernard Cornwell has been writing for more than thirty years and has produced countless bestsellers. Both his Warlord Chronicles and his Saxon Stories books are set in Medieval Europe and served as a big part of the inspiration for the Wayfarers.

Find him on Amazon, Chapters and Goodreads.

1. In your opinion, is fantasy inherently about the hero’s journey – literal or rhetorical – or about something else? How does this play out in your work?

I honestly have no idea – I mean, it’s fantasy!  And fantasy, surely, is about the imagination loosening its bonds with reality. It can take many forms; inspirational, horror-ridden and everything in between. Inasmuch that most written or filmed fantasy needs the framework of a story then it might be compared to a journey.  How does it play out in my work? Again, I have no idea! Truly. I don’t analyse my work at all. I would say I write earthbound stories and rather shy away from fantasy, but I imagine others would disagree!

2. How does your work involve people, events, or actions that change the world?

Only in passing and by accident. Most of my books are set against a military-historical background and, inevitably, some of them are concerned with world-changing events, but that’s not a sine qua non.  I think they’re about men and women under severe pressure, especially moral pressure.

3. Who inspired you to write? Not your writing style specifically, or characters, setting, etc.; who inspired you to put pen to paper in the first place?

I was a journalist for many years, so I lost the fear of the empty page. Then I fell in love with an American, couldn’t get a Green Card (work permit) so idiotically told her I’d make some money by writing a book. That was it! The inspiration (or necessity). I look back on it and think we must have been crazy (and in love), but it worked. We’ve been married 32 years and I just finished the fiftieth novel.

4. We’ll be walking for four weeks, and our average day is going to see 17 miles of walking done. Motivation has always been a key part of our training. When the going gets tough – in your writing or your life – what do you do to keep going?

Irish whiskey is an enormous help.  Usually there isn’t an alternative except to keep going??  I suppose people could just give-in and give-up, but those people wouldn’t have started the walk in the first place?  Still, a bottle of Jameson might be a great walking companion.

5. Arthur was my hero growing up, and remains so to this day; without my vision of him being tempered by works like your Warlord Chronicles this Quest may never have come to fruition. What do you think Arthur’s place – and the place of the Matter of Britain in general – is in the literary world?

Arthur is a completely malleable hero!  He began, in the Celtic saints’ lives, as a villain.  He became a warlord. Chretien de Troyes, and others, made him into the exemplar of chivalry (and added adultery). Tennyson turned him into a muscular Christian hero. T.H.White invested him with literary magic. Every age writes the Arthur they want and he becomes that. He long lost any touch with reality. He’s the true hero for all ages and I suspect that a thousand years from now they’ll still be writing Arthurian epics in a form we would find unrecognisable, yet inspirational.


Reading Too Much: The 48-Hour Reading Challenge

   Posted by: Dan    in Events

Have you ever gotten so lost in a book that you stay up until 2am on a work night, just to get to that last page and find out what happened?

How would you like to spend a whole weekend with your nose buried in the pages?

For forty-eight hours, friend of the Wayfarers (and Dan’s girlfriend) Victoria will be reading as many books as she can. The rules are simple: she starts at 5pm Friday. She reads in any spare moment she has until 5pm Sunday, writing a ‘blog post or review about each book as she finishes them.

Victoria is doing this as a fundraiser for us, and has a unique way of structuring it: you can sponsor her by the book, by the hour (she’ll be keeping close track of how many hours she spends reading), by the page, or as a flat dollar amount.

I suggested she accept donations by the word, but she just looked at me funny.

You decide which of our charities receives your money; whatever way you want to sponsor her, you can just donate it online as per our usual methods. She is also accepting cheques or cash if you’re not comfortable with using your credit card online.

Check out her ‘blog entry about the challenge and leave a comment about what books you think she should read!

Want to do the challenge yourself? Let us know how it goes! If you want to do a challenge like Victoria’s – accepting sponsorship for the Wayfarers as you go, from people at your school, work, or in your family – let us know by dropping us a line at readingchallenge@wayfarerquest.com and we’ll talk prizes!

I’ll be away for the weekend on a training camp with the rest of the guys, but I’m thinking about joining in on my own, even if it’s just for one book. What would you read if you had 48 hours to devote to it?

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