Greg Spry Greg Spry was born in Green Bay, Wisconsin, in 1978. He majored in industrial engineering at the University of Wisconsin—Madison before earning a graduate degree in space systems from the Florida Institute of Technology. When he’s not writing the next epic sci-fi adventure, he enjoys playing kickball and cheering on the Wisconsin Badgers and Green Bay Packers. He currently resides in the United States.
Hi Greg, welcome to the Fantasy Sci-Fi Network. As a new member of our group, I’d like to extend a hearty hand-shake to you. I hope you’ll have a great time here. This is the perfect opportunity for us all to get to know you and your writing. So … make yourself comfortable and we’ll put this interview space shuttle into top gear …
Let’s go. Greg Spry, do you have a pen name and why?
Nope, I believe enough in myself and my writing to use my real name.
What was the defining event that made you start writing?
In late elementary school, I wrote my first novel, Crystalia, which filled 365 pages of two 5-subject notebooks (writing on physical paper really takes me back). I followed that up with another short novel, Bear Wars, in middle school, and wrote the very rough draft of Beyond Cloud Nine in high school. Further details about my early works can be found at https://www.gregspry.com/earlyworks.php.
That is an awesome beginning.
What other writing have you done?
I’m currently writing the third book of the Beyond Saga, Beyond Yesterday, in which Maya heads back in time to figure out how a piece of modern technology ended up 200,000 years in the past. Then the saga will conclude with book four, Beyond Existence, in which Maya must travel to alternate timelines and time periods to prevent powerful exobeings from wiping mankind out of existence. Learn more about the Beyond Saga at http://www.beyondsaga.com.
After the Beyond Saga, I’ll resume work on the first full-length manuscript I wrote as an adult, Destalis. Set several thousand years in the future, Destalis will be the unofficial sequel to the Beyond Saga and finish exploring the concepts introduced in Beyond Existence. I haven’t yet decided whether Destalis will be a single novel or multi-book series. Visit the Destalis official website at http://www.destalis.com to learn more about it. I also have plans to write a sci-fi comedy series of short stories entitled Bears in Space, the concept for which can be found at https://www.gregspry.com/bearsinspace.php.
What made you choose this genre?
I’ve loved science fiction from an early age. I don’t really know how my fandom started, although my dad did watch plenty of sci-fi when I was growing up. See the “Do you also write Fantasy?” section on my FAQ page at https://www.gregspry.com/faq.php for more details on why I write science fiction and not fantasy. Short version: real possibilities for the real future are what inspire me.
What’s the story behind your book title?
The title of Beyond the Horizon is more straightforward and lacks the multi-layered irony behind the title for Beyond Cloud Nine (read more about the title for BC9 at https://www.beyondcloudnine.com/Background.aspx). Traveling beyond the horizon is a fairly simple metaphor for traveling into the unexplored territory of, say, another star system. I knew I wanted to name my starship after the New Horizons probe NASA launched in 2007. I couldn’t have predicted back then that I’d be in position to publish BTH not long after the probe arrived at Pluto. Thus, BTH was the perfect double-whammy.
What’s the basic plot of your book or series?
Here’s the short description for Beyond the Horizon (Beyond Saga Book 2). It’s the story of a young ensign who must prevent the extermination of a benevolent alien race during humankind’s first interstellar mission. A more detailed description can be found at https://www.beyondthehorizonbook.com/Plot.aspx.
Have you used any real people in your characters?
Honestly, I don’t draw too many character traits from real people. I tend to combine traits from other fictional characters. But I’ve been known to work some of my own habits and viewpoints into characters or use a first name or last name from someone I know from time-to- time.
Have you used any real events or places as inspiration for your writing?
Since I write hard science fiction, most every location in my writing is a real place. Scenes of Beyond Cloud Nine take place near Jupiter, on Jupiter’s moon Callisto, on Saturn’s moon Titan, near Neptune, etc. Beyond the Horizon covers humankind’s first interstellar mission to the Gliese 581 system, which is a real star system. Even places I make up, such as the rogue planetar one light year from Earth’s solar system in Beyond the Horizon, could be a real place.
That sounds really interesting.
Do you have another job outside of writing?
Yes, I work for a company called Naviant that works with businesses to implement business process improvement with electronic document management systems. I’m an IT professional and computer programmer. Naviant is wonderful and very supportive of my outside writing career. That said, I’m working toward the day when I can quit the day job and write full time.
What music do you listen to when writing?
I love this question! To get me in the proper mindset, I often listen to electronic music that sounds like it could be from a sci-fi soundtrack. I often imagine my books on the big screen, and I’ve been told by more than one reader that they’d make great movies. There is a fave song I found randomly on SoundCloud entitled Twisted.
What are you working on now?
I’m currently writing the third book of the Beyond Saga, Beyond Yesterday, in which Maya heads back in time to figure out how a piece of modern technology ended up 200,000 years in the past. My plan is to complete the novel this year and be ready to publish in early-to- mid 2017. Learn more about the Beyond Saga at http://www.beyondsaga.com.
How did you go about developing your cover artwork?
In short, I found designers on DeviantArt.com, told them what I wanted, and coordinated the projects to completion. I wrote a detailed blog post on this subject. Check it out here: https://www.gregspry.com/blog.php?id=54.
Very good. It turned out nicely.
How do you handle marketing on social media?
In addition to my author accounts and sites, I maintain Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, other accounts, and websites for each of my books.
Do you have a blog?
Yes, find it at https://www.gregspry.com/blog.php. I post articles about the fictional technology or other aspects of my novels, reviews of other books, announcements, and more. I want to start posting movie and TV show reviews, but those haven’t happened yet because I don’t blog very often. Most of the time, I’d rather put my time into writing the next book.
Do you prefer e-book or hardcopy?
I typically read e-books on my phone, but having the hard copy in my hands is always nice.
Are there any writing styles or genres you dislike?
Regarding writing styles, I’m not a huge fan of info dumping or too much description. I like a quick pace and having the plot move forward towards a discernible goal.
What’s your experience of the Fantasy Sci-Fi Network?
It’s been good so far, although I’ve only been a member for a week or two. It would be wonderful if the group continued to gain recognition and exposure to the point that all fantasy and sci-fi fans knew it as the go-to place for that subject matter.
That would be fantastic. Let’s make it so.
Favorite food: Hot wings (which I don’t eat often because I’m watching my
Silliest saying: “There’s no sense in nonsense, especially when the heat’s hot.” –
Safety Not Guaranteed (movie about a guy building a time travel machine)
Best holiday spot: San Diego or any ancient ruins
Favorite song at the moment: Bow Down by CHVRCHES
Star Wars or Lord of the Rings: Neither. Star Trek. Although I do like the others.
Best superpower: Time travel or mind control.
Interviewed by Kasper Beaumont, author of the Hunters of Reloria fantasy series. www.huntersofreloria.weebly.com
Greg Spry’s Author Links
Beyond Saga Links
Beyond Cloud Nine (Beyond Saga Book 1) Links
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