I have a new writing mentor now: my favorite author, Christopher Paolini, author of the Eragon books. I asked him for some pointers on how to improve my future writing and this was our conversation:
Me: “May I ask you for some author advice? I am in the middle of writing my own fantasy book, but there is a bump in the road. There are some characters that I plan to introduce as companions for the main characters, but I cannot decide how best to introduce them. What would you recommend regarding this?”
Paolini: “It depends. Are they a group who travels together? Or do they each join the hero separately? Whatever you do, make the initial meetings interesting and entertaining, and try not to drown the reader in tons of exposition. We don’t need to know everything about these new characters’ backstories. Not right away. It’s good to keep a few secrets. And good luck with the writing!”
I hope this will be the first of many lessons I will receive from Mr. Paolini. It is not every day you receive training and advice from your favorite author! Paolini has become the Master and I have become the Apprentice. A dream come true!