Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Girl in the Air: Interview with Tyler Pike



Tyler Pike is an up-and-coming voice in the thriller genre, earning many accolades for his newly launched thriller series. Before turning to novels, he was a sinologist, lived in China for many years, and eventually earned a PhD in Chinese poetry and lectured at the University of Sydney in Chinese. He and his wife also spent many years studying Hindu philosophy, traveling in India and running a yoga studio in Sydney, before it all came down on their heads.
        
When he is not writing, you’ll either find him down at the beach with his young family or out on the open road. He is an avid ocean swimmer and long distance runner.

Tyler Pike lives with his family in Australia and the US.

Tyler is different from most popular writers in that he endeavors to respond personally to every email and loves sharing his journey with his readers.

For updates on work in progress and free book offers, join Tyler’s “reading group” on his website:
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About the Book:

Title: Girl in the Air
Author: Tyler Pike
Publisher: Tyler Pike Books
Pages: 352
Genre:  Magical Realism Action Thriller / YA Paranormal Thriller

6'3" 200LBS, AIRBORNE AND ANGRY. ARE THEY SMART ENOUGH TO LEAVE HER ALONE?

A teenaged loner who sees more than she should, Alice Brickstone’s mission in life is to find out who or what killed her twin brother a decade earlier. All her parents will divulge is that he died on a family trip to an ashram in India, a place impossibly far from her remote ski town in Colorado. When she begins to see faces from her childhood nightmares, Alice buries her fear and pounces on the opportunity to hunt for information…and revenge. She works alone and observes no caution. Her simple mission is complicated when a strange Himalayan hermit shows up in the woods near her house telling her that she has paranormal abilities. Skeptical but determined to use any advantage to end the threat against her, she is shocked to suddenly become the hunted. There is only one way out—Alice must master her newfound skills and fly before tragedy takes over again.

GIRL IN THE AIR is the first book in a series of page-turning, fast-paced magical realism thrillers set in the Rocky Mountains. Be transported into Alice’s low-tech world of ancient yogic supernatural abilities, modern teenaged angst and post-modern world problems. Readers interested in Asian mythology will love discovering subtle allusions to the Mahabharata, and yoga practitioners will twist and writhe in their seats. If you like your heroes big like Jack Reacher, weird like Carrie, or scarred like Harry Potter, you’ll love Tyler Pike’s character, Alice Brickstone.

Buy GIRL IN THE AIR today and join Alice on her harrowing ride.

“It’s good, and wackily funny, and mostly ridiculously believable…An unstoppable magic realism action thriller.” – Tom Flood, Award-winning Author

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Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning?  Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

My wife Tamsin and I were in a Jacuzzi in the Rockies of Colorado, drinking a glass of wine (Tam claims we were drinking martinis—a point of great dispute). It was my parent’s Jacuzzi, an outdoor one with a view of the sun setting over the mountains. We were, as usual, discussing the meaning of our lives and enjoying the moment, when we came up with the character that would became Alice Brickstone, the heroine in my series. Alice is, in many ways, a combination of the best qualities of my wife and myself as we saw them in that moment. Alice was conceived to right wrongs that we saw in the world, and now we both love and are frustrated with her. Frustrated because Alice doesn’t listen, because she is stubborn, and she will do things her way no matter what. But we love that her inner strength of character drives her to get the job done anyway, and that she is more insightful than we are. Most importantly, she can literally fly. For us it’s a metaphor for rising above the mundane. It’s a dream. For Alice, however, it’s a literal means of escaping what she fears, and pursuing the truth, as well as getting to remote places of deep solitude, which is what she often needs.

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

I just published two books. In addition to Girl in the Air I also wrote and published a novella called The Feeling of Water. I intended both books to be easy and fun to read and easy/fun to write, but I soon realized that it is very hard to craft a good page-turning adventure. Both books turned out much better than I could have imagined, but were much harder to write than I imagined they would be. I had to dig deep to discover what really made the characters real and human, spent countless hours writing and deleting and writing and deleting and deleting, realized that I’m a perfectionist, tried not to be, wrote and deleted some more, had a lot of fun, then didn’t, then did again, and finally threw a huge party when the drafts were done and off to the editor. I was much gratified when he loved the manuscripts and even more so when they were finally proofed and published last month. And even more so now that the good reviews are coming in.
I feel that writing is both a calling and a muscle. I have to exercise that muscle everyday in order to give exorcise the calling. That sounds glib, but it’s true. It’s clichĂ© for an artist to say they “have to” create or they would perish. I think it’s true not only for those passionate artists, but also for all the rest of us. Those who don’t believe it is true are just too busy or too tired to scratch that natural creative itch within, and they will die a slow death by natural causes before living to a ripe old age, surrounded by family and friends. J

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

I always wanted full creative and marketing control of my work, so I never bothered to approach any traditional publishers. I’m very pleased with how things are working out for me as an indie author.

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

I anticipated warm support from my fantastic friends and family, but nothing can prepare an author for the rush of seeing his or her books sold to and appreciated by complete strangers (who then feel like best friends).

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

I’m currently in Colorado researching and writing book three in the Alice Brickstone series. It should be ready for launch by Christmas or sooner.

Q: What’s one fact about your book that would surprise people?

Girl in the Air features a set of very unique villains, including an enigmatic, sexually-abusive Indian guru and his entourage. Most of my readers are saying they have never encountered characters like this.

I think the real surprise would be if those readers were to hunt around the internet and discover certain individuals in my own past that resemble all of the villains I have drawn…

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?
  
It’s tempting to read Girl in the Air as a preachy book with messages like:

-- Be careful when listening to yoga gurus who claim to know the meaning of life and ask for your full devotion in order to unlock the mystery.
-- Be wary, especially if you are a young girl, of any “teacher” who requires any kind of service in order to grant you special blessings.
-- If you are around any such girls, keep your eyes open and speak out in their defense.
-- Like Alice, seek the truth behind/underneath halos worn by those teachers and speak the truth with no hesitation.

To be honest, however, I didn’t write Girl in the Air as a preachy, message oriented book. Many readers will find in the book (and in the world around them) solid counter-arguments against all of those stirring messages. Nothing is ever black and white. Things are always more complex than they seem. My character Alice learns this lesson the hard way.

Q: Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

If you have already picked up a copy of Girl in the Air and read it, I just want to let you know how grateful I am. It has always been my dream to reach readers with a fun novel like this. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading it and making my dream come true!