Brendan and Lori O’Gara write in the fantasy, contemporary fiction and nonfiction genres. They have published novels together and individually. The O’Garas reside just a few miles from where they grew up on Perdido Key, Florida.
When not at the beach, writing or reading, they can be found wandering the stacks in a library, perusing antique stores and thrift shops, playing tabletop role playing games, or spending time with their family. A large blended family that consists of six children, seven grandchildren and one dog named Harley Quinn.
To make this easy, Lori will answer the questions.
Share a little bit about your book, The Travelers’ Song.
The title of our book is The Travelers’ Song. It is about a group of travelers on a mission of the Seven Kingdoms in search of the greatest food of the lands. It is a covert mission. They are spies searching out the remnants of technology for the self-proclaimed Emperor who is a necromancer.
How many books have you written together? Talk about the process of collaborating. Do you do share responsibilities or split them?
Between the two of us we currently have twelve books published. I have a contemporary fiction series titled, The Perdido Key Novels. Brendan wrote and published a fantasy themed cookbook before themed cookbooks tied to fiction were cool called Gadlin O’Hale’s Fantastic Recipes: From the Seven Kingdoms taken from the greatest Pubs, Taverns, and Inns”.
After about a hundred readers saying, “The recipes are great but what happens to the characters?” Brendan asked me if I wanted to write a fantasy novel series with him. I agreed and that is where our fantasy books started. Our fantasy series is called The Necromancer’s Song the first book is titled The Travelers’ Song. We have three compendium books in the series as well that includes a cookbook.
Has writing together improved or challenged your relationship?
We have known each other since we were 12 years old. We have always been writing or adventuring together, so it is just how we operate. It hasn’t challenged or improved our relationship.
You have several other fantasy books published as well. Tell us briefly about those.
Our fantasy series is called The Necromancer’s Song the first book is titled The Travelers’ Song. We have three compendium books in the series as well that includes a cookbook.
The Dark Beginning is a brief look into the personality of our Necromancer. The Extant is a look into why evolution is a promenade theme in our story. The Two is about golems who are actually very old souls. They will play a pivotal part in the Necromancer’s Song storyline in book two (The Music of the Bones) and book three (The Serpent and the Six)
You also have some contemporary fiction novels, all with “There” in the title? Are they related to each other? What are they about?
I have a contemporary fiction series titled, The Perdido Key Novels. They are connected to each other and are about Native American lore, magic, romance and drama.
You have three titles under the banner of No B.S. Christianity. What does B.S. stand for and what can readers expect to experience from those books?
My mission is to share my non B.S. (Brutally Suffocating) approach to Christianity through my writing by building a platform that attracts the derelicts and outliers in this world. I look to find the humans who traditional Christianity or religion has broken. Humans who know that there must be more to life than this and more to God than we have been lead to believe. Those humans are my tribe. My book titled Believe is basically my manifesto. The other two titles, Breath by Breath and Prayer after Prayer are guides to connect to the Divine. https://loriogara.com
Do you have any odd writing habits?
We will rehearse dialogue. Brendan takes on a character and I take on another. Then we verbally act out the scene. We are constantly talking about our work as if the characters are real people.
What is the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever received?
Write from what you know. In our fiction, we have created characters based loosely on people we know or a composite of traits from several people. The old adage is true, it is easy to write from what you know. That changes depending where you are in your own life story though. The other best advice is, SAVE EVERYTHING you write! Save it in multiple formats.
What is the hardest aspect of writing for you?
Stopping. We have a difficult time knowing when a project is finished. We get so attached to our characters that we want to see them continue.
What does success look like for you as an author?
We love when a reader says that they read one of our books, even if they hated it. The best part is that our characters got a chance to live in someone’s imagination for a while or one of our ideas sparked something in another person. Success for us is when readers know our work and ask, “When is the next book coming out?”
Anything additional you want to share with readers?
Magic is real. There is a constant theme in all our fantasy writings that life is the most powerful of all forces in the universe and it is also fragile, taken for granted. Most of us only get one shot at life, but what if there was more to life than what we know? Live like there is always more to the story.
Life is the most powerful of all forces in the universe. It will survive any obliteration. Life on Earth, unforgiving and beautifully dangerous, is not the same as it was four thousand years ago. Technology dependent humans lost control and as a result, almost destroyed themselves. In this age, knowledge is currency. Technology is magic. Evolution prevails.