Wednesday, January 30, 2013

J. A. Bennett - Knight of the Cosmic Table!

Our first selection is someone many of you know and love, and really, how can you not? Jennie may not know this - maybe she does, she's psychic like that - but it was her influence two years ago that helped me capture the vision of social media and what I could do with it, and she gave me the final push to get on Twitter, something I never thought I'd do. And so, because of her stalwart support, encouraging enthusiasm and her stellar writing, I hereby dub thee, J. A.Bennett - Knight of the Cosmic Table! 

(The actual table is under construction - don't mind our mess)

JAB: I feel totally honored! I had no idea that I helped you that way!

*blushes* Do I get to be called Lady Bennett now?

DPK: We'll call you anything you'd like - Lady Bennett it is! :)

You are a well-known throughout the Blogosphere. You have an awesome blog to prove it. What led you to be a writer? What circumstances happened in your life that led to this decision? 

JAB: I've always enjoyed writing, it's been my preferred creative outlet for as long as I can remember. But it wasn't until I was a senior in high school that I thought I might actually have some talent to back it up. I had an amazing AP English teacher who believed and encouraged me. Through that class, I discovered a love for creating stories. For the next eight years I started nine novels, but never finished any of them. Then one day, I had the best idea, I was certain it would be bestseller! I reached 40,000 words. I figured out that I might be able to finish it for real so I started blogging. That's when I realized the book was crap and now resides in my don't-ever-touch-this-again pile. It's been almost two years since that fateful day and I feel like I'm finally getting closer to writing something that might be marketable by an agent. All I know for sure is, I'm never giving up.

DPK: I have a pile like that - different name, though. Which reminds me - I need to pull out the duster. Kudos to amazing teachers!

I'm glad you brought up "never give up," because that tells us a lot about your personality. A tenacious and vigilant spirit is an added plus among this table of knights. How else would you describe yourself?

JAB: When I find something I'm interested in I get really passionate about it. Which is perhaps just a nice way of saying that I'm a nerd. I always have a million thoughts and ideas floating around my head. Which is really just a nice a way of saying I'm a day dreamer. Above all, I'm a believer in people. I think everyone has the potential for greatness in their lives. Which is maybe just a nice way of saying that I'm naïve. But I'd rather be all of those things then be someone who isn't true to themselves.

DPK: People expect characters to be true to themselves, and I'd like to extend that to real characters. Nicely put, Lady Bennett!

Tell us a little about your current work in progress. When do you plan to have a working draft finished?

JAB: Right now I'm working on a YA Romance that I hope to have polished before the Storymakers conference in may. Here's a brief premise -

Seventeen-year-old Sterling Wilde has been accepted to the prestigious Manning School for the Gifted located in the British countryside. As a talented artist, she is the first to receive a scholarship to the school. All the other students come from wealthy families who want their children to have a leg up in the world of the arts or athletics.

Ignoring Harrison’s rudeness isn’t an option if she wants to be respected by her fellow students. Filling his shoes with shaving cream and mailing him underwear is only the beginning of how she plans to get her revenge.

What she doesn’t expect is for him to fall in love with her.

DPK: Now, I'm not big on Romances (I've pick one up to shake things up, from time to time), but your story sounds like something I could dive into without regrets. Can't wait for you to finish it!

Now that you are a Cosmic Knight, I'd like to know what it means, for you, to be a knight. How do you apply this principle to your writing, as a blogger, and in your real life? 

JAB: I'm so glad to hear that David! I hate to only write for one gender. Hopefully a couple of guys will get a kick out of it as well :)

When I think of knights, the word chivalry pops into my head. It almost makes me want to repeat the scout law. You know, trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, etc. Which is probably a good law for life and blogging. The best blogger's and writers I've met are all of the above, and more.

DPK: Cool! I was in the scout program - that rings true to me (oh, the stories I could tell you ... ;). Couldn't have said it better myself.

My favorite confection is crullers. Never mind the waistline or the calories - which one is your favorite and why?

JAB: ... *google's crullers*

Oh! Those look yummy! You're bringing a box to storymakers, right? I'm a total sweet junkie, especially for chocolate. I'd probably say my favorite dessert is chocolate fondue because you can add chocolate to anything you want, the possibilities are endless!

DPK: Mmmmmm ... Cho-co-late ...

Yes, I will bring a box to Storymakers - how did you know (see - psychic - what did I tell ya?)? I just need to figure out a reason to bring a box - like an unofficial, off-the-program gathering of some sort ... 

Anyways! One more question - do you have curious or interesting habits that manifest themselves when you write? Got to have the music on? A candle lit? Anything at all, and how does it help you?

JAB: Sounds like you already have something in the works, whatever it is, I'll be there!

As for my writing habits, the only quirk I have is that I can't be distracted by anything. I have to zone out and be completely into the story. Which usually means headphones and 5 AM writing when I KNOW my kids won't be awake. Lucky for me, I have a few people who also get up at that insane hour and chat with me on iwrite network. Really motivates me to get out of bed! There's something about the stillness of the morning that really helps me create, to each their own :)

DPK: See, I keep learning new things about you all the time! I should look into this iwrite network doohickey.

It is an honor and a privilege, Lady Bennett, and now, I present to you a custom badge that you may display wherever you'd like (or not, if you're of the "secret order" persuasion), and as proof that you are indeed a Knight of my Cosmic Table. Congratulations!

JAB: Holy, awesome, space man! Thank you so much for knighting me. It's been a joy. You can bet this will be displayed proudly on my sidebar :)

*     *     *

What an awesome first round of Knighting that was, amiright? Let's give it up for Lady Bennett for stepping up to the Cosmic Table!

Also, thank you Tara for making such an awesome badge!

Who will be our next cosmic knight? We'll wait until next month to find out. Until then, keep it real, and may the cruller be with you!

I'm David, and I need to find another chair ...


  1. JA rocks! And look at her - she can eat all the crullers she wants. Good luck at Storytellers.

  2. Ha ha Alex! I wish I could!

    David, Thanks so much for having me. It's a real honor to be your friend :)

  3. Great interview to you both. And congrats David. I saw your book on Kindle yesterday.

  4. Aw! Jennie is awesome! And woohoo on becoming a Knight of the Cosmic Table Jennie! So cool.

  5. I love Jennie!!! This was an awesome interview. Congrats on being knighted, Jennie. And save me a cruller, David. :)

  6. She is totally knighted....and yes us girls can claim it, too!

  7. I love Jennie. Very appropriate first knighting!

  8. Woohoo! Congrats to Lady Knight JAB. Good pick. And what a fun idea, DPK.

  9. Lady Bennett is such an AWESOME person!! Thank you both for this interview. I agree that bloggers = knights... and that mention of crullers made me super duper hungry.

  10. Alright, go Jennie! I love her blog:) Great interview:)

  11. Knights of the Cosmic Table?! What a fantastic idea! You make life fun at the same time as gifting us with great info! And I enjoyed discovering more about JA—she's a gem! It'll be awesome to see you both at Storymakers!

  12. Awesome interview with m'lady. :) Those Knights sound like quite the group.

  13. Wonderful interview. I love how she has gotten you to come out and join us all on twitter. Without that, I wouldn't be able to converse with you regarding The Walking Dead (which is starting up again soon!).

    I'm so thankful for the opportunity to get to know Jennie better. I think that we all have those manuscripts that will never see the light of day. I do love revisiting mine though (sometimes) to see how far I've come as a writer.

  14. Awesome guys. I'm excited to see you both here in a few weeks. I'm glad we're comrades on this blogosphere.

    Can I get in on the crullers party at LDStorymakers? Because I like confections AND you guys. I'll bring the crullers...#patheticselfinvite

  15. Thank you everyone for the kind comments. I'm trying not to let my head get too big ;)

    Shelly, you're always welcome! Invite yourself anytime :)

  16. I love Jennie! Awesome interview David! Congratulations Jennie on you being knighted! And what a celebration! *claps for David and Jennie* Great job, guys! :)

  17. Nerdiness is awesome, and never let anyone tell you otherwise :)

    Allison (Geek Banter)

  18. Awesome! JA is amazing! She's one of the first people I found when I joined the writing community. She is definitely knight worthy. ;)

  19. Great interview. Congrats to Lady Bennett for the knighthood, and a belated congrats to you, David, on Woven. Awesomesauce. The premise of JA's book is really sweet and I am a total romance junkie, so I hope to read it when it's published (as I know it will be). And a big hug to the writing community for being so cool.

  20. Nice to get to know a little more about you Lady Bennett! Love the sound of your story--totally sounds like something I'd love to read!

  21. Your passion shines through. I think nerdy is important for successful authors. Enjoy the journey and good luck with the MS.

  22. Nice to meet you, J.A. And it is a very cool Knighthood badge. :)

  23. Great interview, and good luck with writing! This post was very inspirational. I love to read what other writers have to say about their work and interests. :)