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Monday, July 11, 2016

Authors to Watch: Tyler Pike, author of 'Girl in the Air'






Tyler Pike is an up-and-coming voice in the thriller genre, earning many accolades for his newly launched thriller series. Before turning to novels, he was a sinologist, lived in China for many years, and eventually earned a PhD in Chinese poetry and lectured at the University of Sydney in Chinese. He and his wife also spent many years studying Hindu philosophy, traveling in India and running a yoga studio in Sydney, before it all came down on their heads.
        
When he is not writing, you’ll either find him down at the beach with his young family or out on the open road. He is an avid ocean swimmer and long distance runner.

Tyler Pike lives with his family in Australia and the US.

Tyler is different from most popular writers in that he endeavors to respond personally to every email and loves sharing his journey with his readers.

For updates on work in progress and free book offers, join Tyler’s “reading group” on his website:
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Title: Girl in the Air
Author: Tyler Pike
Publisher: Tyler Pike Books
Pages: 352
Genre:  Magical Realism Action Thriller / YA Paranormal Thriller

6'3" 200LBS, AIRBORNE AND ANGRY. ARE THEY SMART ENOUGH TO LEAVE HER ALONE?

A teenaged loner who sees more than she should, Alice Brickstone’s mission in life is to find out who or what killed her twin brother a decade earlier. All her parents will divulge is that he died on a family trip to an ashram in India, a place impossibly far from her remote ski town in Colorado. When she begins to see faces from her childhood nightmares, Alice buries her fear and pounces on the opportunity to hunt for information…and revenge. She works alone and observes no caution. Her simple mission is complicated when a strange Himalayan hermit shows up in the woods near her house telling her that she has paranormal abilities. Skeptical but determined to use any advantage to end the threat against her, she is shocked to suddenly become the hunted. There is only one way out—Alice must master her newfound skills and fly before tragedy takes over again.

GIRL IN THE AIR is the first book in a series of page-turning, fast-paced magical realism thrillers set in the Rocky Mountains. Be transported into Alice’s low-tech world of ancient yogic supernatural abilities, modern teenaged angst and post-modern world problems. Readers interested in Asian mythology will love discovering subtle allusions to the Mahabharata, and yoga practitioners will twist and writhe in their seats. If you like your heroes big like Jack Reacher, weird like Carrie, or scarred like Harry Potter, you’ll love Tyler Pike’s character, Alice Brickstone.

Buy GIRL IN THE AIR today and join Alice on her harrowing ride.

“It’s good, and wackily funny, and mostly ridiculously believable…An unstoppable magic realism action thriller.” – Tom Flood, Award-winning Author

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Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m in love with my wife and 2yo daughter. Before realizing that this love is the meaning of life, I did all kinds of things, searching in all the furthest corners of the world for “my calling.” The most interesting period of my life was when I lived and worked in China for six years and travelled extensively all over Asia. They were interesting times, full of stories that I want to write someday. I was somewhat lost until I met the love of my life, Tamsin, in Shanghai, at the “grape” restaurant, or Putao yuan, which is still there. The ceiling was covered in dusty plastic grapes, and the food was fatty and sweet. Perfect. Tamsin was an Australian diplomat at the time and we lived the lives of mad sinophile expats for a few years, making art, hosting gallery parties, getting lost in the countryside, and generally making nuisances of ourselves with our Chinese friends. When we finally decided we had to leave China for greener pastures, we moved to Australia, I did a PhD in Chinese, we both got into yoga and healthy living, did lots of surfing, got into India and Hindu philosophy, met a guru, joined a cult, discovered he was a fake, left the cult, and eventually kind of settled down and had our gorgeous daughter, Pippi.

When did you begin writing?

I started writing when I was a kid, and more prolifically at University (Berkeley), imagining myself a beat poet and short story writer, but only four years ago did I start writing with the idea that I wanted to publish and reach readers with adventure novels. 

Describe your writing process. Do you plot or write by the seat of your pants? When and where do you write?

I feel that writing is both a calling and a muscle. I have to exercise that muscle everyday in order to give exorcise the calling. That sounds glib, but it’s true. It’s cliché for an artist to say they “have to” create or they would perish or whatever. I think it’s true for all of us. Those who don’t believe it is true are just too busy or too tired to scratch that natural creative itch within.

Can you tell us about your most recent release?

I just published two books, a novel called Girl in the Air, and a novella called The Feeling of Water. I intended both books to be easy and fun to read and easy/fun to write, but I soon realized that it is very hard to craft a good page-turning adventure. Both books turned out much better than I could have imagined, but were much harder to write than I imagined they would be. I had to dig deep to discover what really made the characters real and human, spent countless hours writing and deleting and writing and deleting and deleting, realized that I’m a perfectionist, tried not to be, wrote and deleted some more, had a lot of fun, then didn’t, then did again, and finally threw a huge party when the drafts were done and off to the editor. I was much gratified when he loved the manuscripts and even more so when they were finally proofed and published last month. And even more so now that the good reviews are coming in. 

How did you get the idea for the book?

My wife Tamsin and I were in a Jacuzzi in the Rockies of Colorado, drinking a glass of wine (Tam claims it they were martinis. It’s a point of great dispute). It was my parent’s Jacuzzi, an outdoor one with a view of the sun setting over the mountains. We were, as usual, discussing the meaning of our lives and enjoying the moment, when we together came up with the character who became Alice Brickstone, the heroine in my series. She is, in many ways, a combination of the best parts of my wife and myself as we saw them in that moment. Alice was conceived to right wrongs that we saw in the world, and now we both love and are frustrated with Alice. Frustrated because she doesn’t listen, because she is stubborn, and she will do things her way no matter what. But we love that her inner strength of character drives her to get the job done anyway. And she is more insightful than we are. Most importantly, she can literally fly. For us it’s a metaphor for rising above the mundane. It’s a dream. For Alice, however, it’s a literal means of escaping what she hates and pursuing those she wants to punish and getting to remote places of solitude.

What was the most challenging aspect of writing your book?

Deleting overimaginative chapters and overenthusiastic descriptions.

Which authors have inspired your writing?

I can only relate the influences on my recent life and writing (I change my reading interests all the time). I currently love the best modern popular storytellers like J.K. Rowling, Lee Child, and those of yesterday like CS Lewis. I also read popular contemporary Western novelists like Tony HIllerman and CJ Box. I have always been interested in all the beat writers (I once spent an afternoon hanging out with my hero Allen Ginsberg). I think I love their energy and lateral thinking, as well as elements of their style that was influenced by Whitman and other American free spirits. I love American writing of the “open road” and always aspire to contribute something to that tradition. 

What projects are you currently working on?

Alice book 3, of course. I’m currently in Colorado writing and researching. 

What advice would you offer to new or aspiring authors?

Read and write everyday. Always keep up with your readers and their interests. Think from their collective point of view. Have fun. Try new things. Seek good advice and let yourself be influenced by it.



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