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Trajan's Arch by Michael Williams - Book Tour

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Get ready for an immersive and enthralling experience in
magical realism and mythic fiction as we celebrate the release of Trajan's
Arch, by Michael Williams! 

Part of Michael's visionary City Quartet, this stand-alone
novel flows with literary grace telling the story of Gabriel Rackett and his
possession of a manuscript that will take him on a journey both profound and
deeply personal as he confronts old ghosts and his own coming of age.

A great story that is part
of a broader, visionary literary project from Michael Williams, Trajan's Arch
will bring you a unique and enjoyable reading experience!

The Trajan’s Arch Blog Tour features guest posts, interviews, and reviews!

About the author:  Over the past 25 years,
Michael Williams has written a number of strange novels, from the early
Weasel’s Luck and Galen Beknighted in the best-selling DRAGONLANCE series to
the more recent lyrical and experimental Arcady, singled out for praise by Locus
and Asimov’s magazines. In Trajan’s Arch, his eleventh novel, stories fold into
stories and a boy grows up with ghostly mentors, and the recently published
Vine mingles Greek tragedy and urban legend, as a local dramatic production in
a small city goes humorously, then horrifically, awry.

Trajan’s Arch and Vine are two of the books in
Williams’s highly anticipated City Quartet, to be joined in 2018 by Dominic’s
Ghosts and Tattered Men.

Williams was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and spent
much of his childhood in the south central part of the state, the red-dirt
gothic home of Appalachian foothills and stories of Confederate guerrillas.
Through good luck and a roundabout journey he made his way through through New
England, New York, Wisconsin, Britain and Ireland, and has ended up less than
thirty miles from where he began. He has a Ph.D. in Humanities, and teaches at
the University of Louisville, where he focuses on the he Modern Fantastic in
fiction and film. He is married, and has two grown sons.

Book Synopsis for Trajan’s Arch:   
Gabriel Rackett stands at the threshold of middle age. He lives north of Chicago and teaches at a small community college.
He has written one novel and has no prospects of writing another, his powers stagnated by drink and loss. Into his possession comes a manuscript, written by a childhood friend and neighbor, which ignites his memory and takes him back to his mysterious mentor and the ghosts that haunted his own coming of age. 
Now, at the ebb of his resources, Gabriel returns to his old haunts through a series of fantastic stories spilling dangerously off the page--tales that will preoccupy and pursue him back to their dark and secret sources.

Author Links:

Author Interview

  1. What would you consider to be your Kryptonite as an author?To have a Kryptonite would mean that I had super powers, right?  I feel anything but super-powerful in the presence of the blank page, but once I am there, I can do certain things better than others.  I would love to write a tightly constructed plot—something characteristic of the best detective fiction, or one of those Shakespearian comedies replete with mistaken identities and shipwrecks, all tied up in a perfect, well-wrapped package as each plot strand falls into a neat order, that perfect combination of surprise and inevitability that is plotting at its best.  My fiction is plotted capably, but its best qualities, I’ve been told, lie in characterization, language, and atmosphere.  For once in my life, I’d like for plot to catch up.

2. If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
You may not believe in yourself, but you need to believe in your work.  The process is everything. And that entails preparation, revision, a constant focus on doing the best possible writing, letting desire for publication and fame wait until another time, because they may not happen.  The only thing about being a writer you can control is the writing of the book.

3. What book do you feel is under-appreciated? How about overrated?
My own books?  Or someone else’s?  My Arcady went out of print, and though revived in e-book form by Margaret Weis Productions, I think it was one of my best books.  As to overrated, I’d rather not say: if people like the one I would choose, it says to them that their judgment is misplaced, and making that kind of call understandably wins no friends among prospective readers.

4. Favorite childhood memory involving books?
Fourteen years old, reading Lord of the Rings for the first time.  Well into The Fellowship of the Ring—chapter 3, if I recall—when the hobbits hide at the side of the road and the Black Rider sniffs for them before moving on in his search.  I remember clearly looking up from the page in astonishment, realizing that the book had taken a sudden, more serious widening, and what was more, I had been completely immersed in Tolkien’s world for about half an hour.  It was then I decided that I wanted to make stories that would draw people in like that.  Though I am sure that immersion had taken place before in my reading life, it was the first time I was conscious of it, could put words around it.

5. If you could dine with any literary character, who would it be and why?
Prospero, in Shakespeare’s Tempest.  He’s the patron saint of benign older men, packs serious, benign magic, and though he’d make a shifty dinner host, I trust I would learn something from the evening.

6. What fantastical fictional world would you want to live in (if any) given the chance?
Middle Earth, no question.  I believe it is still the most thoroughly and brilliantly realized fantastic world, and that all the worlds that have followed it—great or not-so-great—owe being the way they are to the genius of Tolkien’s world-building. That will never change for me: the trilogy is too important to my soul.

7. Did you want to be an author when you grew up?
I did, but as I have grown up, I’ve decided to be a writer instead.  “Author” always implied a public figure to me, but at this stage (perhaps because celebrity is less likely when you’re my age), I have fully embraced the process of making books, and struggle with the public face of the job.

8. If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?
Piece of work.

9. What is your most unusual writing quirk?
My habits are mundane.  I rise at 4 am, so that my most fresh and hallucinatory imagining is devoted to my writing.  I spend the rest of the day on my second job, so the early hours attend to the heart’s calling.

10. What’s one movie you like recommending to others?
Goodfellas.  The best Mafia movie ever, with all deference to Godfather I and II.  Goodfellas also has, in my humble opinion, the best voice-over ever.

11. If you could own any animal as a pet, what would it be?
The three cats who already live with us.

12. Have you ever met anyone famous?
I don’t know.  I think Margaret Weis is famous.  I was guided around Canterbury by David Mitchell when he was a yet-to-be-famous student at the University of Kent, and I have also known John Gardner and Anthony Hecht.  I met Tony Kubek at O’Hare Airport, and parked Paul Hornung’s S.U.V. for him.  But the best was when I met Muhammad Ali—a story in itself, which you have to buy me a drink to hear.

Tour Schedule and Activities

8/14     Armed with a Book  Review

8/14     I Smell Sheep  Guest Post

8/15     Horror Tree  Guest Post

8/16     The Seventh Star Blog     Top 10

8/17     The Literary Underworld   Guest post

8/18     Jazzy Book Reviews   Author Interview

8/19     Sheila's guests and reviews   Guest Post

8/19     Armed with a Book     Interview

8/20 Stuart Conover's Homepage Guest Post

8/21 The Sinister Scribblings of Sarah E. Glenn Author Interview and possible review

Links for Trajan’s Arch

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  1. Thanks for a thoughtful interview! I enjoyed the conversation.

    1. You're very welcome! :) Thanks so much for doing the interview. Much appreciated!


Please try not to spam posts with the same comments over and over again. Authors like seeing thoughtful comments about their books, not the same old, "I like the cover" or "sounds good" comments. While that is nice, putting some real thought and effort in is appreciated. Thank you.