Interview with Return To Exile Author, Eric Patten

I know what you’re thinking.  And yes, it’s another interview.  But it’s not just ANY interview.  This is a super-kewl-you-almost-forgot-it-was-an-interview interview.

Today I’ve captured, tied-up, and threatened with every inch of his life got Eric Patten, author of the majorly epic middle-grade novel, Return to Exile.

From EJ Patten’s blog:

Snare 1: Return to Exile


Eleven years ago, a shattered band of ancient monster hunters captured an unimaginable evil and Phineas T. Pimiscule rescued his nephew, Sky, from the wreckage of that great battle. For eleven years, Sky Weathers has studied traps, puzzles, science, and the secret lore of the Hunters of Legend believing it all a game. For eleven years, Sky and his family have hidden from dark enemies while, unbeknownst to Sky, his uncle Phineas sacrificed everything to protect them.
For eleven years, Sky Weathers has known nothing of that day.
But on the eve of Sky’s twelfth birthday and his family’s long-awaited return to the town of Exile, everything changes. Phineas has disappeared, and Sky finds himself forced to confront the mysterious secrets he’s denied for so long: why did his family leave Exile on that day so long ago? What, exactly, has Phineas been preparing him for? And, the biggest mystery of all, who is Sky really and why does everyone want to kill him?!
Featuring an action-packed plot that covers the gamut of every monster you’ve never heard of (not to mention weird powers and weapons made out of garbage), Return to Exile is brimming with boy and girl appeal and is a gem for reluctant young readers. And, with a diverse assortment of well-aged monster hunters in the cast, this series will be a hit with adults young and old as well.  Recommended for ages 9+.


So now that you know about his book, it’s time to get to know the author!  Eric’s been forced agreed to answer some questions for all of our Mixed-Up readers! 

Me:  Most authors come up with scenes for their books in various places….like stalking, watching people in the park. I prefer standing on my head and whistling Dixie while eating chocolate cupcakes with pink frosting and rainbow sprinkles. How about you?

Eric:  Hmm…nothing too odd. I usually just frequent the run-of-the-mill places writers often go: haunted basements, castle dungeons—our secret moon base in the fields of ruin.

Me:  *taps chin pensively*

Eric:  Though, for The Legend Thief (Hunter Chronicles, Book 2, which comes out December 4, 2012), I did spend a lot of time in the wilderness. My backyard goes right up into the mountains with their prairie grass and scrub oak forests, and occasionally, I would climb into the foothills with my laptop, take in the city below, and fight off bears with my bullwhip and unnatural good-looks and charm. Well, with a bullwhip, at any rate.

Me:  Ah yes, the good old, charm, good-looks and bullwhip technique.  Very effective.

Eric:  I also spent a few weeks at a ranch in the sandstone hoodoos of southern Utah. I’m actually allergic to just about everything outdoors—I get the sniffles something fierce—but I love looking at it through the window of an air-conditioned room while sitting in a hot tub and eating dark chocolate bars.

Me:  I think I’m in love.  He said CHOCOLATE.

*ignores awkward silence*

Me:  Anywho… I like talking to the voices in my head. They make great companions when I’m not eating cupcakes…or wearing a toga to go people stalking watching. Do you enjoy talking to your characters, too? And what, praytell, do they whisper back to you? Hmmm….??

Eric:  You wear a toga to go stalking? That sounds comfortable. I’ve always wondered, are those machine washable or dry clean only?

Me:  Wash-n-wear, baby!

Eric:  When I hear voices, I like to go to the secret moon base. The voices never bother me there. Apparently, they can’t breathe moon air. Stupid voices.

Me:  Stupid voices, indeed!  Personally, I favor chatting with these people in public, even if I do get strange looks. Do you prefer conversing in private or are you okay looking like the crazy bag lady – er, man – in public?

Eric:  Have you seen my goatee? I get crazy looks whether I’m talking to myself or not. I figure, why not get a cat, a hairnet, and a nice bag—maybe one from Target, or the Gap—and go for the whole shebang?

Me:  None of the above will be used as evidence against you in the court of law. Where were you Friday night, the 6th of October, 2011?

Eric:  Er…moon base?

Me:  Ah-ha!  Friday was actually the 7th!

*ignores chirping of crickets*

Me:  So…do you have children and do they enjoy reading your books?

Eric:  I have three kids, ages nine, seven, and five. Return to Exile is my debut and so far, only my nine-year-old daughter, Jordan, has read it. I think Return to Exile ranks third on her list, right behind Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven series, and Avi’s The Good Dog.

Yes, she gave me the bronze medal.

Me:  Huh.  Well, at least you placed.  So anything prophetic you’d like to share with us before we bid you adieu?

Eric:  An author is never an author in his or her own home. I have no idea what that means, but I wanted to end with something that sounded deep. So, there you are.

Me:  And there you have it folks!  Straight from the author’s handkerchief-stuffed mouth.

But seriously, I want to thank Eric for humoring me today.  He’s my kind of guy.  I think we’d get along just fine, if he’d ever stop running away from me.

Eric is so epic, he’s offering up a 10 page crit to one of our readers!  Yes, you heard me correctly – a TEN PAGE CRIT!  From one author to another, I know how generous this is.  So if you’re a writer and want to win a crit from an epic author, then you should leave a comment!  But seeing as I’ve already won the crit, it’s kind of pointless.  Seriously though I can’t win – I work here.   But if I don’t win, everyone’s fired!  Seriously, I don’t have the authority to do that.  But….so yeah….

I dare you to enter.  Triple dawg dare.

If you’d like to see other blogs that Eric will be visiting this month, be sure to check the calendar!

Amie Borst writes fairy tales with a twist.  She’d love for you to visit her at her blog and join her crazy corner of the cyberverse, complete with jokes and dancing skeletons.  But you won’t find any damsels in distress there – only butt-kicking, smart-talking girls with attitudes!