Our next interview is with Blaise Corvin. You may know him from the Delvers LLC series, but he’s also written other books. Let’s jump right in.
When did you first start writing?
I can first remember actually really getting into story after being introduced to creative writing in 3rd grade. I’d been reading from a young age, but when I actually started building my own story, I fell in love.
That first story I ever wrote was about an Earth boy who traded cheeseburgers to aliens for advanced technology before being embroiled in an intergalactic war.
What kind of books do you enjoy reading?
Portal fantasy is my favorite genre of all time. From A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (which is dark AF btw), The Architect of Sleep, The Soprano Sorceress, the Amber series…I love all of it.
I’m a fan of greater Fantasy and Science Fiction, too, of course. I’ve sampled a little something from just about every genre, but I tend to prefer the fantastic to the mundane.
Do you deal with writer’s block?
Everyone does, but writer’s block is also a myth. This is where discipline as a writer separates the hobbyists from the professionals. If you are depressed or feel like shit, that doesn’t mean you /can’t/ write, it means you don’t feel like it.
Well, I didn’t usually feel like working in most of my past jobs at some time or another…I still did it. The bills aren’t very forgiving.
So if you’ve got writer’s block, the only thing to do is either try something different, or put pen to paper and make words, even if you aren’t resonating with them or your work isn’t that great. You’ll work through it.\
Outliner or pantser?
I absolutely hate “pantser.” It sounds like cutesy baby talk. I prefer the term Brandon Sanderson uses, “Discovery writer.”
To actually answer the question instead of just being salty, I’d have to say I’m a mixture of the two with emphasis on discovery writing. I tend to establish important plot points in a story before ever actually writing it that will serve as guide posts. That way I won’t get lost in the weeds.
So I actually do create an outline, but it’s generally less than a page.
How many hours a day do you write?
I’m not sure. It varies. I work on writing stuff for an average of 15 hours a day, though.
Of your books, which is your personal favorite? Why?
Right now? Probably Mitigating Risk, Nora Hazard 1. This is my most technically competent novel so far and really shows how much I’ve learned, how far I’ve come in my craft.
Share a photo of your workspace?
Sure. I don’t work from just one place. If anything, I’m kind of a writing nomad with a laptop. I wrote part of Mitigating Risk, the first book of Nora Hazard from a hotel balcony. This is a pic of the view.
Who are some of your favorite authors of all time?
Brandon Sanderson, Robert Jordan, Deborah Chester, Jim Butcher, Larry Correia, Beverly Cleary, and Roger Zelazny.
Where do you get your ideas?
Dreams, driving, the shower…they’re always there. It’s actually not very difficult for me to come up with stuff at the drop of a hat. I have far more ideas than I will ever have time to flesh them all out.
How do you like being a full-time author?
I love it. This was what I was always meant to do, I think. However, this profession is hard as hell, and without thick skin and/or a certain level of self-confidence (or ability to disconnect), I think this career path could easily give someone an ulcer.
What is your writing process like?
It varies, but usually involves lots of procrastination, coupled with drinking too much rum and shitposting gamer memes.
Oh lawd. That’s a really difficult one to answer.
-Let’s keep this to production knives, not customs. Customs are a whole ‘nother subject.
-Only folding knives…
-How about mid-size, not large or small…
-Lastly, let’s keep it to EDCs, not defensive knives, multitools, or specialty knives.
I guess within those parameters, I can narrow it down to a top 5 that I really enjoy carrying:
- Kershaw Tilt
- Benchmade Axis-lock Stryker
- Spyderco Pacific Salt
- Masters of Defense Hornet
- Spyderco Manix II
Honorary mentions (sorry, can’t help myself):
- Spyderco Delica
- Benchmade 940
- Kershaw Junkyard Dog II
- SOG Trident
- Zero Tolerance 0452CF
What advice do you have for writers?
Be very honest with yourself—sometimes you can’t trust the advice or opinions of others. If you suck, admit it to yourself.
On the flip side, people believing that you’re great or that you suck don’t individually matter. The trick is to find the sweet spot where you have the skill necessary to reach the minimum number of readers you find acceptable to share your story with.
If you aren’t there yet, practice. Get off social media. Social media is the worst distraction and enabler around.
Last but not least, it’s possible that once you hit the number of readers you are trying to attain as an audience, an equal or greater number of people may hate your work. Ignore this (easier said than done). You are writing for your audience, not for people who dislike you or your stuff.
Whether the number you are trying to reach is 10 or 10 Million, find peace once you attain your goal. There is no such thing as objective quality.
What was the best money you ever spent as a writer?
New socks and underwear. Updating to new clothing after wearing worn out, damaged stuff (for longer than I care to admit) took my adulting to another level!
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I don’t worry about that stuff. My stories are the tales I want to tell. I /am/ a reader and a fan of the genres I write in, so reader expectations are never a concern for me.
What can fans expect from you next?
Probably Nora Hazard 2 and Secret of the Old Ones 2.
Anything else you would like to add?
If anyone would like to send me a custom Todd Begg knife, or a Rassenti Paysan, or a Zero Tolerance 0777 (with the damascus composite blade), I’d love that person forever (platonically).