The Story Behind My Blog's Title

The Story Behind My Blog's Title
Why is my blog named "My Father's Oldsmobile"? Click on the car and find out.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Author Interview:Steve Rzasa

I'd like to welcome Steve Rzasa to my blog today. Steve has two Christian-Scifi books published through Marcher Lord Press, and he's here to tell us about those, and a little about himself.

SW. Welcome Steve, tell us about you.

SR. I was born and raised in South Jersey – an important fact. I earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University’s College of Communications in 2000, and then spent seven years as a reporter and assistant editor at weekly newspapers in Maine. In 2007 my family moved out to my wife Carrie’s home state of Wyoming so I could work as the editor of a weekly newspaper. Today I work at the local library in Buffalo, where we live with our two sons.

SW. When did you first become interested in writing?

SR. I’ve always loved writing, even in grade school. It wasn’t until high school and college I started writing for my own enjoyment. There are many notebooks full of ideas that sit gathering dust under my desk. Every so often, I pull them out for fresh inspiration.

SW. Can you tell us a little about the ups and downs on your journey to publication?
SR. It took me about six years to write the first one-third of a long manuscript entitled Commissioned. Then around 2008, I finished the remaining two-thirds. I was blessed with a very short wait after that – within about four months after I started submitting my manuscript, I received several rejections. However, Jeff Gerke of Marcher Lord Press decided to publish my work as two books – hence the birth of The Word Reclaimed and The Word Unleashed.
SW. That's wonderful! It's nice to meet someone else who's work took awhile to rippen. How do you approach a new project? Do you research and plot before you write? Or do you have a general idea and just go to it and see where it leads?

SR. I usually come up with a general idea, and then try to do a bare-bones outline. I also work on character profiles – though I’m not always consistent in how far I develop each one. With The Word Reclaimed and The Word Unleashed, I wanted the fictional galaxy to feel lived-in and realistic, so I did a lot of legwork on different languages to include. I also spent a lot of time reading up on futuristic spaceship engines, the physics of acceleration and future weapons, and the like. Plus, reading about history helped me develop a future society.

SW. Very interesting! Tell us about your latest release.

SR. In April, Marcher Lord Press, an independent publisher of Christian science-fiction and fantasy, published my second novel, The Word Unleashed. It’s the sequel to The Word Reclaimed (MLP, October 2009), and is an epic space opera tale of a young man who finds a book amidst the wreckage of a starship. It follows him on the adventure that ensues as he avoids the galactic religious police, who are adamant the book be destroyed. In The Word Unleashed, this young man must decide what he’s going to do with this book and teams up with a group of elite soldiers working to safeguard their king.

SW. What inspired you to write this story?

SR. It started with one idea: what happens if, in a future where Christianity is banned, a kid on a starship finds a Bible? Who would want him to succeed? And who would want him to fail? The idea of writing an epic space opera has always appealed to me, and the chance to do so in a way that would bring attention to the Christian message is a great opportunity.

SW. Can you give us a little history on the characters, including how you developed them , and what endears them to you?

SR. The characters developed over several years. Some of them – like the main character, Baden Haczyk – were simple to come up with. Others required more thought, more time figuring out how they would react, etc. I didn’t have a method, really. I just kind of daydreamed and took notes.
I’m particularly fond of Baden and his father, Simon, because their relationship is one of the key ones in the story. But I also thoroughly enjoyed writing the main villain, Detective Chief Inspector Nikolaas Ryke. His motivations and conflicting emotions were a treat to explore.

SW. What do you hope to be able to accomplish through your writing? Any long term goals?

SR. The Word of God is powerful – sharper than a sword, as the Scriptures say. Through my writing, I hope to show people how it impacts a person’s life, and how it can give rise to faith. Without it, Christianity is a drab shadow of the full glory of Christ.
I also hope to give people a great adventure.

SW. Any ideas for future projects?

SR. I am working on a third novel that involves a new main character plus some of the secondary characters from The Word Reclaimed and The Word Unleashed. I also have several short story ideas percolating. As always, the difficulty is finding time to write them down!

SW. Now for some fun, irrelevant stuff. What's your favorite movie, food, and place to vacation? Also, any other hobbies?

SR. My favorite movie is and always will be Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. Beautiful. As for food, well, I have many favorites, but the top ranked is the chicken-fried steak sandwich offered by the Hotel Wolf in Saratoga, Wyoming. If you haven’t eaten there, you haven’t eaten at all.
My other hobbies besides reading and writing include drawing/sketching, which I mostly do to illustrate my sci-fi worlds. I also enjoy playing with my grade school-age boys, and going on walks with my family.

SW. We love Star Wars! Every other year we have a family movie marathon. The off years we watch The Lord of the Rings.
Other than your book, do you have any recommendations you'd like to pass along?

SR. Lots! Try out any of the Marcher Lord Press titles – they are varied but very good! I personally enjoyed A Star Curiously Singing by Kerry Nietz and Eternity Falls by Kirk Outerbridge. I love Kathy Tyers’ excellent Firebird series that offers a different take on familiar Old Testament prophecies, and Chris Walley’s Lamb Among the Stars series that shows a distant future in which sin returns to a galaxy that has largely been at peace. But my all-time favorite sci-fi book is Merchanter’s Luck by C.H. Cherryh.

Steve, thank you so much! This has been a real pleasure. Just so you know, I have both your books on my Kindle, and plan to pass the word about them around. I come from a whole family of scifi-lovers, so it's my duty. There's so much to explore in the world of science fiction, and it's really exciting to see a Christian line of books in this genre.
Steve is giving away an autographed copy of The Word Reclaimed. Leave a comment with your email to enter.

For more about Steve Rzasa


  1. Steve, Enjoyed your interview. I love scifi books so I look forward to reading this book. Thanks for stopping by to chat.

    Shawna, thanks for inviting Steve today. Pls enter me in the draw.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

  2. It was fun reading the interview Steve, learned a few things about you :) Missing you and Carrie here and Maine! I wanted to get Dean a copy of the books - big sci-fi fan - but sadly haven't yet soon though! Keep writing!!!
    Heather Long

  3. Hi Steve! I bought a Kindle for PC version of your book and plan to read it in just a few days while on vacation. I love Marcher Lord Press and am thrilled to see the fantasy/sci-fi/spec genre territory being reclaimed for Christ.

  4. I had an interesting discussion about Christian science Fiction with a friend of mine at a homeschool function today. I told her about your books.

  5. Great to hear such good news about the books! Thanks to all for commenting. And nice to hear from Heather Long ... we miss Maine too!

  6. Hi Shawna and Steve -
    Great interview - and the books sound good, too! Please enter me in the draw.

    Blessings -

    Please come visit my blog for book reviews & giveaways -


  7. Great interview. I would love to read this one.


  8. Great interview! I love space opera, and have devoured every other Marcher Lord book so far, so please enter me in the draw, too!



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