Paul Mouchet - A Coming-of-Age Tale of Growth and Courage
Paul Mouchet hails from a small town, just outside of Ottawa, Ontario where he lives with his lovely wife Candice and his rambunctious golden retriever Gizmo. He is a retired IT consultant, turned computer game developer and novelist. When he's not in front of his computer, he enjoys the outdoors, movies, books and all things fantastical. As our Author of the Day, he tells us all about his book, Call of Titan.
Please give us a short introduction to what Call of Titan is about.
A young adult, epic fantasy, Call of Titan is a coming-of-age tale of growth and courage. Set on the mythical world of Orth, this action-packed adventure unfolds at a rapid pace, introducing the reader to magic, dire wolves, the god Fenrir, and a nefarious plot to rid the kingdom of its entire wolf population.
What inspired you to write this story? Was there something that made you want to tackle this?
I’ve had this story in my head for years, too many years. I recently retired from my IT career and decided it was time to put the story down on digital paper.
Tell us more about Kit. What makes her so special?
Kit’s a fighter, and not just in a combat sort of way. Her entire life was an uphill battle to fit in and to survive. Over the course of the novel, she discovers just how powerful her inner strength really is. Over the course of the series, she learns more about who she is and where her fortitude comes from. But despite her strength and willingness to fight, she is tender-hearted and ultimately ready to put everyone else ahead of herself.
Why did you decide to involve an imprisoned god in this story?
Titan, the imprisoned god Kit worships, provides the main quest for Kit’s journey to discovery. He is the brass ring that people would strive for. Over the course of Kit’s adventures, she discovers that freeing him is not the penultimate goal she thought it was.
Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?
I was an IT specialist for most of my adult life, but I’ve also got a knack for drawing and music. At some point, I hope to find the time to explore those two underdeveloped talents – especially drawing. When I was young, I really wanted to be a cartoonist, but life went in a different direction for me.
In which way is this a coming-of-age story?
The story opens with Kit growing up in a village where she is hated because of her race. As such, all she wanted was to fit in, to be accepted by those around her. After she joins the Temple of the Fist, she learns that caring about the wellbeing of others is far more important than other people’s perception of her. It’s only when she opens herself up that she discovers who she truly is.
Cool cover! Tell us more about how it came about.
My cover was created by Frina Art. I basically told her that I was looking for a young, strong teen and an oversized black dire wolf with a white star on his head. From there, she shared some ideas with me of what she thought would look good – and I loved it. She has created the covers for the first five books in the series and I’m working with her now to create the last four.
This is the first book in the 9-book Priest of Titan series. Can it be read as a standalone? How do the other books in the series tie in with this one?
I don’t think the books could easily be read as standalone novels. Even though each book has a specific story to tell, there is so much world-building that goes on over the course of the series that it would likely be confusing to pick it up in the middle. I do try to provide a certain level of synopsis with each book, but it’s done through the story and not in a “previously on …” sort of way.
Are you a plotter or a pantser? Do you plot out your stories before you start writing?
When I started writing, I was a pure pantser. I had only a vague notion of where the story was supposed to end up, but I knew how I wanted Kit to grow over time. I also had a good sense of what challenges I wanted her to face over the course of the story. As the series progressed, my vision for the whole story started to take shape and I began plotting how I’d get there. Unfortunately, the characters rarely wanted the story to go in the intended direction and I had to keep going back and revising my plot. I’m now midway through writing book 5 in the series and I’m still revising my plot.
When starting on a new book, what is the first thing you do?
First, I try to decide how the book will end. After that, I break the book up into three acts and try to envision (in broad terms) what will take place in each act so that I can get the ending I’m looking for. Once those items are in place, I start writing and hoping that the characters will let me continue in the direction I want.
What are you working on right now?
I’m actually working on four books right now. I’m finishing up the final editing on Hammer of Titan, book 3 in the series. I’m finishing adding in the Danny Fox-dancing’s PoV to Eyes of Titan, book 4 in the series. I’m also finishing up Kit’s arc in Daemon of Titan, book 5 in the series. And, last but not least, I’m writing a Halloween short that features a darker tale about Silverleaf and Amara, two of Kit’s best friends at the Temple. I don’t know if I’ll get the short story finished and edited in time for a Halloween freebie for my newsletter subscribers – but I’m going to do my best to make it happen.
Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?
I do my best to make myself available to my readers. If anybody sends me an email, I will personally respond, typically within 24 hours.
I also have a website that features links to my social media accounts plus a free short story called Wolf Spirit. To get the short story, you need to sign up for my newsletter “Marvelous Mondays” which I send out every two weeks. My newsletters are typically a mix of updates on my book releases, small stories about what’s going on in my life, pics of my golden retriever Gizmo, and some promotions about authors I enjoy reading. I really like the promo part of my newsletter because it gives my readers an easy way to get access to other indie authors they might not have heard about. Sometimes there are free book giveaways thrown into the mix.
If anybody just wants the free book, Wolf Spirit, they can find the link to my website below. If they don’t want to receive the newsletters after getting their book, they can unsubscribe at any time.