1. How do you feel about your role in the book?
Being in two novels is pretty exciting, actually. I'm an archaeology professor by trade, but my role as an operative in a United Nations task force affords me a pretty sweet opportunity to travel the world, whether it be by TF-18 helicopter or by sword portal. I guess by default I’m the leader, although we all play a pretty equal role. I think the others sometimes defer to me because I’m Apollo’s son, but I’d rather just be a regular guy. Well, a regular guy who just happens to be a demigod.
2. Did you have fun during the writing of your tale?Most times, yeah. Not everything has been fun, but it’s part of being a superhero of a sort, I suppose. Having superhuman strength and a healing factor does make some of the adventures better knowing I’m pretty invulnerable, but I've never really been brought to my limit, not yet anyway. What really makes the story enjoyable is the people. I get to go up against some of the ancient world’s most menacing monsters knowing my best friends have my back. Aleta’s sarcasm keeps me smiling, and it’s Sarah’s generosity that grounds me, especially when I’m at my wit’s end. But, the one person who seems to know me inside and out is my best buddy, Brandon. We're like brothers. Without these people in my life, I don’t think I could do what I’m doing.
3. What would you do with your own happy ending?I used to think I knew what a happy ending would look like for my story, but the more I do, the more I think that I’ll just be happy knowing that, whatever happens, I've done my best. I’m not really interested in money or fame. Sort of odd coming from a semi-Olympeian, eh? I look at my dad and how he grew from being a self-serving, impetuous son-of-a-gorgon into one of the most compassionate individuals I know. I guess my happy ending would be just knowing that those I care about are happy.
4. If you could have any animal for a pet, what would it be?Wow, that’s easy—one of my father’s horses. You know, the ones who drive the sun chariot? I got to meet them once, and I tell you, there’s nothing that gets your adrenaline pumping than being around a flaming stallion who breathes fire.
5. If you could be anyone else, would you? If so, who?Not really. I’m pretty happy being me. I do have some things to sort out. I mean, who doesn't? But, I've had a good life, and I have the things that make me smile: friends, family, and a sword that can open dimensions. Knowing who I am has always been something I've had to struggle with, especially in book 1, and working through all of my existential stuff has taught me a few important lessons, one of which being, it’s not who you are, but it’s what you do with your life.
6. What was the saddest moment of your life?I can’t really give details since that’ll spoil book 2, but I can say that one of the saddest moments in my life is being without someone I love. That pain rips me to the core more than any Hadean monster ever could. I’d rather have my heart literally ripped out by a Stymphalian bird or brass-clawed Gorgon than lose that which I love beyond all things. Like I said, I can’t elaborate, but you’ll see.
7. If you could tell the author anything, what would you say?Just keeping listening to all of us, and let us guide your storytelling. So far, we’re pretty pleased with how our lives are going, even with the obstacles. We’re growing into a formidable force for good in the world, and knowing there are more adventures planned over the course of five books in total, we’re ready to handle whatever you have for us. Just keep them coming. We’re good to go.
8. What is the one goal you hope to achieve in life before you die?Tough question. But, the one goal I have is twofold: love and be loved. As long as I have those around me who love me—my team, my family, and my beloved—I can also love them back. Without that, life has no real meaning. I don’t seek glory or fame. I've led a complicated life, if you haven’t already seen in both books, and the one thing that provides an anchor is the love people have for one another. That bond is stronger than any sorcery.
9. What do you wish to be remembered for?After I’m gone, I want people to remember that I cared. Having been tested by some of the most powerful beings in the cosmos, creature and god alike, I’m hoping that when people speak of Danelos Fairmont, son of Apollo, they will say that my compassion for those around me was one of my most memorable qualities. I don’t believe it’s hubris to say that.
During the age of Olympos, when a vengeful goddess shatters the Sacred Scales, both immortals and humans alike suffer. Apollo, the god of truth, goes from a glorious existence as The Shining One to a victim of Zeus’ wrath, and his journey makes him question his godhood, his role in the cosmos, and his views on humanity. Prophecy and the Fates direct his course, and he must make difficult, yet vital, choices. Millennia pass, and Dan, Aleta, Brandon, and Sarah—four reluctant modern-day heroes gifted by ancient civilizations born of the gods—bound by prophecy, have to choose whether or not to save their world when it could mean they never existed. They must master their new powers while battling against incomprehensible forces from the Underworld and repairing the Sacred Scales, destroyed long ago. With the equilibrium between Order and Chaos unhinged, and the Olympian gods struggling to exist, these four must ally themselves with the United Nations to protect an endangered world, becoming the only group who can fight against metaphysical threats to the Earth, forging Task Force: Gaea. Can mortals succeed where gods cannot go?
Boston born, I grew up on Long Island in New York, and have my B.A. in English with a Master's in Secondary Education. I currently teach AP English Literature, IB English, and Creative Writing in Land O' Lakes, FL. My avid appreciation for fantasy fiction came from a childhood love of Greek mythology and comic books, especially Wonder Woman. Stemming from this literary love affair, I published my first novel, Task Force: Gaea—Finding Balance, in February 2012.
In addition to my fantasy writing, I have written poetry, much of which was influenced by my travels abroad, namely to Ireland. My hibernophilia extends not only to a great love of the Emerald Isle itself, but also to the writers who hail from there, namely W. B. Yeats, and I studied this poet in a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship at the National University of Ireland in Galway in 2005.
Additionally, I have traveled to Spain, France, and England—all with trips I have led with students—and hope to show more of my students what the world beyond Florida looks like.
I'm "living the dream," as it were, and I love life—I just hope it loves me in return. I reside in Land O' Lakes, FL with my partner of 13 years, Gavi, and our two cats, Yankel and Shayna.