You may remember that a few months ago I reviewed an exciting new book titled The Holder’s Dominion. I’m excited to announce that we caught up with the author and she graciously agreed to be interviewed for GeekBeliever. So without further ado, here’s our interview with Genese Davis.
1) Tell us about your journey becoming a published author with The Holder’s Dominion. How did that come about and how would you describe the book?
Seeing this book come to life and witnessing its story shape video game perceptions is truly exciting. It all started when I wanted to describe how impactful MMOs can be, and wanted to create a basis for family and friends of gamers to understand them and their world. The Holder’s Dominion reveals the secret side to online games, and offers an avenue for different generations to understand one another. Even if a reader has never touched an MMO, he or she can read The Holder’s Dominion and find out why gamers game.
In addition, this book’s overarching concept and details within the story were composed to relate to the experience of a large and well-defined gaming community. The Holder’s Dominion is an epic journey that will bring validation to gamers while intriguing them with speculative technology and a new world to adventure. The story reveals the amazing experience of collaborative video games and the communities that grow up in and around them.
As I wrote page after page, the story took on a life of its own and became a fast-paced thriller! The publishing industry was immediately excited about the idea of an MMORPG novel that bridges the gap between gamers and non-gamers. Publisher’s Weekly featured a full-length article about Holder’s and how its story captured nuances in video game culture.
The reception for Holder’s has been incredible, and I’m honored to have endorsements from video game industry legends like Dr. Richard Bartle, Christie Golden, and Micky Neilson. Check out the Telly award winning movie preview for the novel here: The Holder’s Dominion Book Trailer
2) The characters in Holder’s Dominion really capture the reader because they are each so unique and yet authentic – they all seem like people you’d meet in real life. How did you develop your characters – were they based on people you know?
Thank you, I’m really glad you liked the characters in Holder’s. 🙂
I think all writers pull from personal experience, and the characters in Holder’s are no exception. Developing characters can be a lot of fun but can also be very taxing. For Holder’s I built out character bios for each, and would often go over character details when a chapter centered around one in particular. Especially, if it had been a while since I’d last worked on that character. Having a backbone for each character, remembering his/her likes, dislikes, or favorite/worst memory really helped inspire the dialogue.
3) The players refer to their in-game characters as “aliases” rather than the more classic “avatars” – was that done to make it easier for non-gamers to relate?
Maybe not consciously, but that’s a great point! I tried to make the entire book an easy read for anyone who has never before touched an online game. Plus, I really wanted to invent features for Edannair that set it apart from real, existing MMOs, yet kept it authentic. This way, avid MMO gamers could experience something new and exciting, too. Creating new vocabulary, species, zones, and AI abilities that can only be found in Edannair was a way to set this game apart.
4) The descriptions and worlds in Holder’s are so vivid it’s easy to imagine them on screen – as demonstrated by your fabulous book trailer. Do you see Holder’s Dominion becoming a movie someday or do you prefer to keep your stories on the page?
Oh my goodness, so glad you asked, Amy! A few producers are discussing my novel as we speak for several different feature film options. I love collaborating with others (my editors loved how much I loved editing, hehe), so I’m always open to hearing other’s interpretations for Holder’s, and all the characters and plot complexities extrapolated through even more mediums.
5) Your life motto is unique and sounds fun – just like you. Is there a story behind it?
Yes! “Lark Your Life” became my motto after I moved away for college. When I was a child my father always described a lark as a carefree, spirited or spontaneous adventure. He would come home from work and ask, “Who’s up for a lark?” Moments later we were off and on our way to a late night movie, or to get a late night treat. The fact that we were leaving the house unexpectedly and with optimism was what made it so special.
Today, I keep his tradition going by trying new things, even if at first they don’t seem to be my cup of tea. Being positive, open-minded, adventurous and spontaneous is what “Lark Your Life” means to me. Definitely try it out, and let me know if it works for you! When you Lark Your Life fun times always seem to manifest, hehe.
6) Tell us more about what it’s like writing and hosting in the video game industry, and where we can go to keep up with your future work.
In addition to writing novels and contributing to multiple transmedia projects, I’m also writing columns for MMORPG.com. In general, writing can be very challenging and lonely. Meeting constant deadlines or creating lengthy treatments can be very draining, but once you get it done you forget all the pain it took to get there. 😉
It’s been a blast hosting video game discussions like the web series, Pixel Vision by Pixel Legends. Their crew and I aim to provide a unique, insightful, and creative look into video games and the video game industry. The first episode, The Gamer In You, is an extrapolation from my website’s (TheGamerInYou.com) movement, and we discuss the importance of understanding what “gamer” really means and why we need to redefine this term. Episode 2, Interactive Storytelling, dives into how video games are the only form of entertainment that allows the player to influence the story and why that’s so important for the evolution of entertainment. Check them out here: Episode 1: The Gamer In You | Episode 2: Interactive Storytelling
Thank you so much for the feature, Amy. And fellow netizens, I hope we get the chance to meet up in person! I’ll be in San Antonio over Labor Day weekend for the World Science Fiction Convention (WorldCon). And if I don’t see you there, let’s meet up at BlizzCon this November!