This week’s interview is with J.F. Holmes. He is a really talented military science fiction author and editor. He’s just released the first of a large shared project called JTF 13. I’m really looking forward to seeing how that universe evolves. I especially love its tagline: “They hold the line… between heaven and hell.
Interview: J.F. Holmes
Rob Howell’s Interview Questions
What is your quest?
My quest is to tell the story. I have a boundless imagination, fueled by Tolkien and Asimov, and there are dozens of stories running through my head at any time. Show me an object and I will, on the spot, make up a story about it. So I guess you can say that I need to get it all out.
What is your favorite color?
1968 Ford Green, as painted on a Mustang. I like to tell a story by character interaction and character action. I hate information dumps; I’d rather know by what a person does or says.
What is the average flying speed of an unladen paint brush?
Well, one thing I’ve learned is to follow the Soviet Army doctrine. Reward success, starve failure. If I write a book that maybe I loved but didn’t do well in the market place, then I doubt I’ll ever do a follow up.
What are the powers of your personal Holy Hand Grenade?
Small unit interaction and combat. Both of which are about the people involved in them, nothing else. How do they feel? What emotions are driving their actions? When people ask me about Irregular Scout Team One, I tell them that it’s not about the post apocalyptic world, it’s about the Team.
- Favorite Muppet? Kermit. Deep down he’s a smart ass.
- Your Wrestler Name? Couch Potato
- And Signature Wrestling Move? Intellectual bafflement. (Rob’s Note: “From the top rope!!!”)
- Favorite Weird Color? 1968 Ford Green
- How Will You Conquer the World? I already have, by bringing the world down to my size.
- What Cartoon Character Are You? Bugs Bunny.
- Best Present You’ve Ever Received? My Executive Vice President of Happiness for my company, AKA my significant other, Karen. And my two sons, who are good, decent men.
- What Do You Secretly Plot? Novels. Many Novels.
- Favorite Sports Team? NY Yankees. Since I was small kid growing up in Long Island.
- Cake or Pie? Cake.
- Lime or Lemon? Chocolate
- Favorite Chip Dip? Buffalo Ranch
- Favorite Musical Performer We’ve Never Heard Of? Count Hans Von Haffenpepper, who invented the electric glockenspiel in 1734. A man way ahead of his time.
- Whisky or Whiskey? I gave up drinking at aged 21 when I realized it made me do really stupid stuff.
- Favorite Superhero? Superman
- Favorite Weird Color? 1968 Ford Green
- Steak Temperature? Well.
- Favorite 1970s TV show? Battlestar Galactica
- Best Thing From the 80s? EVERYTHING. You children do not know what the awesomeness of the 1980’s was. And Madonna.
- Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall? Thanks, now that song is stuck in my head. (Rob’s Note: You’re welcome)
- Favorite Pet? My neighbor’s dog.
- Best Game Ever? D & D, Axis & Allies, Red Storm Rising, TACOPS
- Coffee or Tea? Tea
- Sci-Fi or Fantasy? Sci-Fi
- Brought to you by the letter ___? Q, because Q invents all kinds of cool stuff
What question(s) would you like to ask me?
What is best in life?
Rob’s Answer: To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women!
Second best: Being paid to write stories in the tradition of Robert E. Howard, J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert Heinlein, and so many others.
Tell me again where we can find your stuff?
And where can we find you?
So far only Libertycon this year.
Do you have a creator biography?
J.F. Holmes is a retired Army Senior Noncommissioned Officer, having served for 22 years in both the Regular Army and Army National Guard. During that time, he served as everything from an artillery section leader to a member of a Division level planning staff, with tours in Cuba and Iraq, as well as responding to the terrorists attacks in NYC on 9-11.
From 2010 to 2014 he wrote the immensely popular military cartoon strip, “Power Point Ranger”, poking fun at military life in the tradition of Beetle Bailey and Willy & Joe.
His books range from Military Sci-Fi to Space Opera to Detective to Fantasy, with a lot in between, and in 2017 two are finalists for the prestigious Dragon Awards. As of August 2017, Mr. Holmes has eighteen books and two novellas published.
In 2018, he launched Cannon Publishing, www.cannonpublishing.us specializing in anthologies and works from up and coming authors.
Final question for you: What should I have asked but did not?
You should have asked if I had any any idea what I was getting into? My answer: No.
Thanks to John for taking the time to answer my questions.
If you have any suggestions or comments about this interview format, let me know so I can keep tweaking it.
Also, thanks to you for reading. If you’re interested in any of the other interviews I’ve done, you can find them all here: https://robhowell.org/blog/?cat=326. If you are a creator, especially an independent creator, and you want to be spotlighted in a future interview, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, if you want to join my mailing list, where I’ll announce every interview, as well as what’s going on in my life, go to www.robhowell.org and fill out the form (Name and Email Address) or drop me an email and I’ll add you.
Have a great day.
Author of the Shijuren-series of novels
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