Matthew Laver: In His Own Words

Matthew Lavar

Images courtesy of Matthew Laver

Matthew Laver is a proud father, avid Dragonage and Dungeons and Dragons fan, an author of three books and … a dragon. Don’t judge. He’s a dragon. If I can identify as a double cheeseburger, he can identify as a dragon. I am totally fine with this self-identification especially when I know he’s doing good in the world.

“I donate my royalties to adoptions.”

Matthew Laver has written three books; A Tale of Mist and Shadow, A Tale of Mist and Shadow: Garden of Lilith and A Tale of Mist and Shadow: The Land of Desolation. A story can grasp an author and compel them to immerse themselves into a story they cannot nor wish to escape, and that is certainly where the strength of Laver’s convictions lie.  What fascinates me is how he has turned his passion for dragons into a vehicle to make change in the real world, where his fantasy novels can bring hope to a child in need of a family.

When did you first know you would become an author?

“About four years ago when I started writing A Tale of Mist and Shadow. I never saw myself as a writer before that, but the story has taken hold of my heart, brain, and won’t let go. It has to get out and I have a lot more to go!”

“But seriously, you should buy it and read it because my story ends by us actually saving a child. I donate my royalties to adoptions. You might find a bit of your own story woven into mine, and I want to see our stories of struggle, tragedy, sacrifice, and beauty end with an actual child finding a loving family. Oh, and dragons. Did I mention dragons? Lots of them :)”

Are there any challenges you have overcome that you would like to elaborate on (in relation to your writing career)?

“I just want to write, talk to people, escape into the woods, play Dragonage, D&D, and go to conventions, oh yeah and be a dad! Time, haha, time is the hardest. Thank god I’m a dragon and live forever. The whole query thing is frustrating, and time consuming. Necessary? Debatable. It’s also been really challenging for me to figure out how to authentically “market” my book. It feels weird trying to “get” people to read my story, get myself out there. One of the major reasons I so appreciate you and your site Chaospirations!” [oh, please… do go on.  ~chaospirations]

Laver continues to discuss how the story itself is a motivational force, and how he steps into his character of a dragon to tell his tales.

“I’ve struggled with self worth, and whether I should write at all, but every time I get there the story builds and builds, swelling until it finally bursts out like something out of an Aliens movie, then I edit and beg someone to help me. What really helps me is soaring on my identity as a ransomed dragon. My freedom came at a price I couldn’t pay. That means I have worth, and so do you. Our stories of “we’re found” overcome the enemy’s lies, that’s worth writing about and that’s where my hoard is found.”

Do you have a favorite writer?

Favorite writer yikes, no because I can NOT choose one. Tolkien. C.S. Lewis. Anne McCaffrey. Orson Scott Card.

How about a favorite quote?

“Fantasy is escapist, and that is its glory. If a soldier is imprisoned by the enemy, don’t we consider it his duty to escape?. . .If we value the freedom of mind and soul, if we’re partisans of liberty, then it’s our plain duty to escape, and to take as many people with us as we can!”

“Tolkien didn’t ACTUALLY say this, but it’s a fantastic paraphrase and has always inspired me.”

What advice would you give to a beginning author?

“Be intentional. Write. Write. Keep writing. Write what scares you, but write what inspires you also. That dance is where magic happens.”

Any other information you would like to share with the public?

“This story is where fantasy and reality meet in a surprising dance of brutality and compassion. I hope you’ll step into the fog and come soar with me. May our black and white vision of law be washed away in cascading colors of Grace. Be blessed!”

Samwise Gamgee said it best! “I know. It’s all wrong. By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are. It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something.

Frodo: What are we holding onto, Sam?

Sam: That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”

“…and the pen” Laver concludes, “is mightier than the sword, claw, and bow.”

Matthew Laver can be found on Facebook and Twitter, and his books can be found on AMAZON. A Tale of Mist and Shadow can also be downloaded in audiobook form from Audible.


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