Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Midnight's Cloak: An Interview with Author Justin Geary

Joining us today with his Epic Fantasy, Midnight's Cloak, is author Justin E. Geary. On tour now with Virtual Book Tour Cafe, please join me in welcoming Justin!

When did you decide to take that step that made you a published author?

I first started taking writing seriously when I’d written the rough draft for Midnight’s Cloak. I saw that it was decent and had the potential to be a good novel. It wouldn’t be until years later that I finally had my novel edited, which is and always should be the first step you’d take in becoming a published author.

What has been your greatest challenge as a writer? Have you been able to overcome it?

There have been so many challenges for me; therefore it’s hard to pick just one. Having Midnight’s Cloak edited was a challenge because it was hard for me to accept that my original work was less than perfect. Proofing was hard because I am a perfectionist and I had to go through it three times, twice because I’m obsessive compulsive, and once because my computer wasn’t saving the proofs properly. The latest challenge though is trying to market my work, which has been difficult and a learning experience. I hope I never stop learning about it. Because when you stop learning about something, you stop growing.

If you had to sum it up Midnight’s Cloak in 30 or less words, what would you say?

Midnight’s Cloak is world building epic fantasy about a group of heroes struggling to survive the beginning of a world war.

What message do you hope readers take away from Midnight’s Cloak?

My goal in writing these novels is what I think most Epic Fantasy writers strive to do, and that’s to help the reader forget about the problems and stress of their day and immerse themselves in a world that they’ll hopefully find compelling. So I guess the message is read, enjoy, and lose yourself in the story.

What is your favorite scene in the book?

My favorite scene in Midnight’s Cloak is in the third chapter when two of the main characters, Clophues and Aramina, meet for the first time. Ironically, it was one of the last parts of the novel that I’d written.

Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

Lot’s training in the first chapter is based on some true experiences I had in my life when I practiced at the Western Maryland Hapkido academy years ago.

What has been your greatest pleasure in writing this book?

My greatest pleasure was when I started getting reviews from readers about how much they enjoyed Midnight’s Cloak. It almost made the blood, sweat, and tears I put into the work worth it. Few had read my novel prior to its publication and those that did were editors helping me to shape the rough draft so their opinions were more about how I could make the work better.

What kind of research was involved for the series? Did you find it became easier with each book? 

I didn’t research Midnight’s Cloak very much because it wasn’t really required. If you have a good editor, it isn’t really necessary to research Epic Fantasy fiction, because that is what you pay them for. Though in the future, I would like to read more about the middle ages to better understand the technology they would have.

I would read these books simply because of the covers – all in the series are beautiful! Did you have a part in their design?

No, I didn’t have anything to do with its design. However I plan on using the same artist for the future volumes.

Do you have plans for a new book?  Is this book part of a series?

I’ve already started on Shadowlance, the second novel which takes place after the first novel. The rough draft is being written now.

What do you have in store next for your readers?

The next novel, Shadowlance, will be character driven like the first but will be primarily about the staff and the character’s quest to possess it.

What has been your greatest pleasure or personal success as an author?

Being able to write a good novel and knowing that it is good, both from feedback and the actual amount of work I put into its creation.

What type of hero do you like best?

I like a brave hero or heroine who is not afraid to stand their ground against impossible odds. It says a lot about a person’s character, whether it be fact or fiction.

How do you unwind after a long writing session?

I watch a good sitcom, play a video game, or shoot a couple games of pool.

Is there a genre you wish you could write, but haven’t made the plunge? Which one and what appeals to you about it?

I wanted to write some historical fiction but it’s probably the most difficult type of fiction to write because it requires a lot of research. There was a World War 2 novel that I had started working on called The Good War. I stopped working on because of the amount of research required to create such a novel.

What appeals to you most about your chosen genre?

Epic Fantasy doesn’t really have the limits that other genre’s have because it is something that was created totally from your own mind. You still have to follow certain rules at times, but for the most part you can just write what you want.

The Book

Dark blood of the evil ten; drank by a son of the same brood. Possessed by the taint, he marches to different sections of the world, conquering and destroying everything in his path as a cloak of midnight pulls itself over all things. The great foretelling of LaStaudd the Wise, the age of the Rising Flame.

An Excerpt

A little over a month ago Lot had had a dream. He was standing in a field with a forest to one side of him and a cabin to the other. The samurai had dreamt before, but none were as detailed as the one he’d witnessed that night. In the yard, a girl was digging a grave. Lot walked down an embankment and watched her for a moment. There were tears in her eyes and dirt on her gown. In the graves were the bodies of a man and a woman.
The girl digging the grave looked up at him. She had the most beautiful brown eyes he’d ever seen. They were bewitching and yet soft.
Could you please help me?” she asked. The samurai sensed danger around him.
This is just a dream,” Lot said.
She dropped her shovel, squatted to the earth and came up with a handful of soil that she put in his hand.
I’m in Terrid,” she said, “six hundred fifty miles northeast of Andalar.” Eyes opening, Lot found himself in his sleeping quarters. He had a handful of dirt clutched in his palm. This girl was real. The place that she had spoken of he had never heard of. But the dirt Lot brought back with him and his instincts were all that the man needed. Quietly, Lot put on his sandals, slid the door to his room open and went down the hall, where he slid another door open into the dojo. Then he went outside. How Lot had managed to leave without waking Ogami he did not know; the man’s ears were sharp. Crossing the yard he entered the stable, threw a saddle on tracker his master’s quickest horse, and rode for Andalar.
On Lot’s way north he’d stopped at an inn close to Andalar. The samurai was exhausted. He’d ridden for nine hours, and Tracker needed a good rest. After paying the stable boy to feed and rub down Tracker, he went to the inn where he’d chosen a round table in the far corner of the room. Shortly after Lot had ordered his first drink, a stranger burst into the room, raving like a lunatic about Prince Raziel drinking from the blood of the ten Clonan after poisoning and killing his father, king Tarnoll. The man claimed that a civil war had broken out between the king’s loyalists and Raziel’s men. As quickly as he had entered the inn, the stranger left as if on an important mission. Lot approached the innkeeper and asked if the stranger was one to spread rumors. The innkeeper had told him that he had known the man his whole life and he was as honest as they came. Lot tossed a few coins on the table and retired for the evening.

The Author

Justin E. Geary lives in western Maryland where he spends his time reading various authors and exploring different subjects. In addition to fiction he enjoys history and some science. He is the nephew of 1942 Pulitzer Prize winner Laurence Edmond Allen. Justin’s hobbies are chess, pool and writing epic fantasy. He started reading Edgar Allen Poe with interest at the age of sixteen and started writing screenplays at the age of nineteen. Screenplays were unfulfilling for Justin because they lacked depth. Later on he wrote his first novel at twenty-one and Midnight’s Cloak his second at twenty-four. After finishing the rough draft Justin decided that Fantasy was his escape from the world. 


Genre - Epic Fantasy
Publisher - Outskirts Press
Release Date - May 30, 2012

Purchase Link -



  1. Seems as though Justin is heading on the path as his uncle. Best wishes.

    Editing, I find, is the hardest thing to do after writing the draft. What to cut, what not to....

    McClintock, I'm nominating you for the Liebster Blog Award. Please see my blog if you decide to accept it.

  2. Enjoyed reading this interview. It looks like a good book!

  3. Great interview. Sounds like an awesome read. Thanks for bringing it to our attention.

  4. Thank you so much for joining us on your tour Justin!

  5. Thanks for hosting me MK. Thanks for the compliments Peaches, Sherry and Kathi. I saw your book trailer MK. It's Cool. The area you live in sounds like paradise. Are you a horse lover. My dad had a few horses. We used to haul hey several times a year. Horses are great. I had a fascination for them growing up. I do the robot on the dance floor but other than that I'm a hundred percent human.