Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Author Interview - Abyss of Chaos by David Beem

Describe your book in five words or less.

Cool/action/adventure/supernatural thriller.

How did the ideas for your books come to you?

It’s all the cool stuff I’ve read or watched in the movies or on TV that touched me. It’s like, “what’s cool about Raiders of the Lost Ark?” and “What’s cool about Fringe?” and “What’s cool about Dan Brown?” all wrapped into one big bag of cool. In fact, I have it on reliable authority that your life will be cooler just by owning the book. You don’t even have to read it; the cool will rub off on you just by owning it!

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Yes. Religious extremism is bad. Moderates are good. People start messing up the minute they start doing extreme things in the name of God.

What is the hardest part of writing for you? What's the easiest?

Learning the ropes with marketing the book is definitely the hardest. Actually writing the book came very easily. I should clarify on the writing part: Before Abyss of Chaos, the longest thing I’d ever written was a five page paper! My former career was as a concert cellist, but I became disabled and can no longer do it. So I turned to writing, and found out it was a total blast! Thing is, when you make a career switch like that, one tends to be very forgiving towards oneself. I learn easily when a more expert writer tells me that something I’ve done wasn’t perfect because I never pressured myself to be perfect. I have no reason to be able to write at all, so criticism was far easier to take, and learn from, than when I made my life as a cellist. A lot of concert cellists practice as much as eight hours a day. So there’s a lot of pressure to be perfect. It’s similar to what I see a lot of writer’s doing to themselves, and that’s a tough way to learn and improve. Learning is most easily done when one adopts the spirit of the fool, assume you know very little and listen critically to the advice you’re getting from others. Good advice can come from all sorts of places.

What's next for you? Are you currently working on or have plans for future projects?

Next is the sequel to Abyss of Chaos. I’ve got at least four more Max Sinclair books in me. Abyss of Chaos is the first in a trilogy, and I’ve got two definite ideas for a prequel. I’ve also got one other series idea and a few nonfiction ideas.

Why did you choose to write for specific genre?

Well, I’m a fan of the cool, and I consider my genre more “the cool genre” as opposed to “action/adventure/supernatural thriller genre,” but since most retail outlets won’t let you select “cool” as a genre, I’ve got to use what’s there.

What's it like hearing that readers are eagerly awaiting your book's release date?

Nothing is better than the idea that someone, anyone, will read this book and enjoy it. If I’ve got even one other person out there who loves this book as much as I do, I’ll be happy.

What is one question that you've always wanted to be asked in an interview? How would you answer that question?

I would love to be interviewed by a Star Wars fan site! The question would be: “Who shot first? Han Solo or Greedo?” Answer, “HAN SOLO!”

What was your road to publications like? I started playing cello when I was nine, and I knew I was going to be a cellist by 13. Concert cellists are made young. When I learned that I couldn’t do it anymore, it might have been very tragic if it weren’t for writing. When I started talking to my colleagues and friends about writing, everyone was expecting a “tell-all” or something about music. For me, that would have been a drag. It would have been a constant reminder of loss and I’d feel like a wounded animal waiting to die. Writing fiction, after making a career in what most consider “high art,” was liberating. Here was a professional opportunity to unbutton the vest, relax, and just write about stuff I thought was cool and fun. I think when you read the book you’ll agree that there’s a freshness and vitality that comes from an author who really loves what he is doing. So the road to publication was an unlikely one, in that three years ago I was still traveling the world with my cello, making recordings and that sort of thing. I never had the thought in my head that I’d be writing.

Author Bio

David Beem is the author of Abyss of Chaos, a forthcoming supernatural thriller which chronicles the adventures of the cellist, Maxwell Sinclair, and his aging archeologist godfather, Dr. Phineas Monroe. Formerly a professional cellist, David was a founding member of the Corigliano (1996-98) and Eykamp (2002-07) Quartets, Principal Cellist of the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra (2002-07) and member of the Euclid Quartet (2007-09).

His performances spanned three continents and his Corigliano Quartet Carnegie and Weill Hall debuts garnered critical acclaim from the New York Times and Strad Magazine. His relationship with the Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, John Corigliano, culminated in the South Korean premiere of the composer’s String Quartet No. 1. David has served on the faculties of Murray State University, University of Evansville, and Indiana University at South Bend.

David has recorded the string quartets of Bela Bartok, (2, 4 & 6) Frederick Fox’s Dawnen Gray, and Bernard Heiden’s Clarinet Quintet with James Campbell. Currently, David is hard at work promoting his first novel, Abyss of Chaos, even while producing its sequel, The Philosopher’s Game.

Please leave a comment on this post in appreciation of the author.


  1. Great interview David! Love your take on learning to be a better writer and handling critique. Good luck to you and can't wait to read the book!

  2. If you enjoy it even half as much as I enjoyed yours, I'll be delighted! Seriously, everyone should go read Vernon's "Slow Boat to Purgatory." It rocks.


Thank you for stopping by - please let me know what you think