Author Interview

Author Interview | Jerell Conner | Frederick Price | Jeroll Rodgers | The Trials Of The Samson: Bloodlines

The Trials of the Samson: Bloodlines is a fan-fiction cum fantasy novel set around a ‘what-if’ based on true events of history. Written by three authors, Jerrell Conner, Frederick Price and Jeroll Rodgers, this book touches upon the life of its protagonist Samson, a prominent historic figure.

In a conversation with Bookish Fame, Jerrell Conner, Frederick Price and Jeroll Rodgers talked about their book, their writing journey, and what to expect next. Read on!

  • Please introduce yourself to our readers.

Hello Jerrell, Frederick, and Jeroll here. We are founders and authors of Eggizō Entertainment. We also have a few others that contribute as writers and editors. So the three of us will be chiming in on the various questions in this interview, sharing our own unique point of views and experiences in this process of writing, creating, and illustrating “The Trials of Samson: Bloodlines.”

  • When did it dawn upon you that you wanted to be a writer?

-Jerrell: I’ve always known I would grow up to be an artist. My earliest memories are from drawing Star Wars space battles (back in the Return of the Jedi era). Writing and publishing came much later with my first book, a post-apocalyptic graphic novel series called The Revelations, back in 2003.

-Jeroll: I never thought I’d be a part of a company that publishes sci/fi, Christian fantasy type of content. But when we all came together and began brainstorming these ideas, it all just worked out. 

EE_BIO-VID_Thumb1(FP)(s)

-Frederick: I did. It began with my comics and the book clubs my mother placed me in as a young child. My imagination and creativity were then unleashed. 

  • What inspires you to write books? What are the things which catch your attention?

-Jerrell: I pull inspiration from just about everywhere; movies from childhood, music from my college days, a commercial I see in passing. Literally the world is my inspiration. Sometimes it comes in small things. In terms of authors, I’m a big fan of CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien, but it was mostly artists and comic book series that propelled me into literature. I was a fan of X-men (Jim Lee), and a lot of Dark Horse comics, and later I was really into Popbot and most things from Ashley Wood.

  • Tell something in brief about your latest book, The Trials of Samson Bloodlines?

The Trials of the Samson: Bloodlines, Book Review, Book Blogging

Both Jeroll and Jerrell got together on an idea for bringing historical characters to life in a new way for a modern audience. As we developed the concept over the course of a few months, we spoke with Frederick and interestingly enough, he had his own story with Samson that was similar to ours. So we ended up joining forces and merging those two projects.

This book series “The Trials of Samson: Bloodlines” is the culmination of about five years of work to build to this point. Our goal with this series was to tell a compelling story of figures throughout history and weave in a few threads of the fantastic to play with the notion of “what ifs”. Here we do just that with the historical figure of Samson, as we weave him throughout twelve major historical eras from ancient Rome through ancient China in this first Volume. Showing him fight everything from giants and fallen angels to dragons!

  • How do you organize yourself, as a writer, to keep track of the world you’re writing about?

-Jerrell: One thing I would say about writing is that it’s important to just get your ideas out. When writing I jot notes down on my phone or outlines and character ideas so that I don’t forget them later. Prayer is also a vital part of my creative process; praying for inspiration and guidance always helps me. There are a million different places you can take a story or a character, but not all of them are good. Sometimes guidance comes divinely, other times practically… I welcome them both!

  • When you were young, did you ever see writing as a career or full-time profession?

-Jerrell: I’ve always known I would grow up to be an artist. My earliest memories are from drawing Star Wars space battles (back in the Return of the Jedi era). Writing and publishing came much later with my first book, a post-apocalyptic graphic novel series called The Revelations, back in 2003.

-Jeroll: I never thought I’d be a part of a company that publishes sci/fi, Christian fantasy type of content. But when we all came together and began brainstorming these ideas, it all just worked out. 

-Frederick: I did. It began with my comics and the book clubs my mother placed me in as a young child. My imagination and creativity were then unleashed. 

  • How did you approach the writing process this time around? Do you have a set routine, or does it vary? And how do you manage it with your full-time work?

-Jerrell: when I write, I use a lot of quick/rough outlines. Really just to get the ideas out there. I come back later after a time to flesh out the story and give it more structure. For two reasons, I don’t want to forget anything, so I jot it down quickly, and find that having a structure and direction first keeps the main thing the main thing, and carries a common focus throughout the story. If something doesn’t hold up when I revisit the draft outline later, it is easy to spot and remove. 

EE_BIO-VID_Thumb3(JC)

With this series, it does vary because we have so many talented writers. One chapter I may be responsible for drafting up an outline for the direction of the story, or that may come from another writer and I’m more responsible for editing down or directing a further along state of the manuscript.

This is my full-time work. Illustrating and writing… and managing some of the ins and outs of running a new exciting business.

  • How would you describe the contemporary scenario of writing and reading around the world?

-Jerrell: I feel that people still read and love to read. You don’t hear much about it, and it seems like most people are checked out on social media or on online gaming, but once you get plugged in with people who are avid readers, you see there is a huge community of readers still out there, reading traditional paperbacks, and e-books… but mostly paperbacks. Surprisingly, people still love the smell and feel of a good book in their hands! 

  • How crucial is marketing and promotions when it comes to selling a book?

-Jerrell; It’s pretty vital. I mean, you pour your heart and soul into creating a book that you want people to enjoy and go on the journey with, but if you don’t get it into people’s hands, how can they? Honestly, in my experience, this has been the biggest hurdle; being an indie creator and getting your artwork into as many people’s hands as possible.

  • Do you read much, and if so who are your favorite authors?

-Frederick: Edward Stratemeyer, who created Tom Swift and Stan Lee of Marvel along with the authors they worked with.

  • Any advice you would like to give to aspiring writers.

EE_BIO-VID_Thumb2(JR)

-Jeroll: don’t stop pursuing your goals. We’ve been at this for years now with our company and getting our content together for people to enjoy. And there have been many of times where things didn’t look like we’d ever complete anything. But thankfully working with someone like Jerrell it’s like an iron sharpening iron type of relationship and partnership. So in the moments I may have been discouraged about something regarding the business I knew Jerrell wasn’t going to give up so I had to make sure I was doing my part. And only God knows where we’re headed but I know that we’re headed in the right direction. So if I could tell anyone anything, it would be to keep writing and keep chasing after the dream and if you ever get discouraged surround yourself with people that don’t know what ‘give up’ means.

-Jerrell: I would say assembling the right team is so vital. As any geek who’s seen or read about the Avengers knows, the right or wrong mix of team members can make or break any operation. I was blessed to be a part of such an amazing team creatives at Eggizō. And also, put in the work. I’ve seen so many of my colleagues and classmates give up on their dreams or just let them sit there and collect dust. If you have a dream or a vision, I believe it’s there for a reason. Pray about it, and act on it. No one else is going to be as passionate about your idea than you are, and you can’t depend on anyone else to push you to write it. So, the good and maybe the bad news is; it’s all up to you.

-Frederick: Jot your thoughts down, don’t give up on your dreams, surround yourself with the right people, know your strengths and weaknesses, and make sure God is preeminent in your life.

  • Are we going to hear more from you in the future?

YES ABSOLUTELY! We already have Volumes II and III in the works! Readers should expect to see the next book in a couple of months. All three books in this series are slated to be released this year (2020)!

*We wish Authors Jerrell Conner, Frederick Price and Jeroll Rodgers all the best for their future endeavors.*

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s