Interview with novelist Linda Andrews


Today’s guest, Linda Andrews, is here to talk about her sci-fi novel The Syn-En Solution.
Bio:
Linda Andrews lives in Phoenix,
Arizona
with her husband, three
children and a menagerie of domesticated animals. While she started writing a
decade ago, she always used her stories to escape the redundancy of her day job
as a scientist and never thought to actually combine her love of fiction and
science. DOH! After that Homer Simpson moment, she allowed the two halves of
her brain to talk to each other. The journeys she’s embarked on since then are
dark, twisted and occasionally violent, but never predictable.
Welcome, Linda. Please
tell us about your current release, The Syn-En Solution.
I
think the book blurb tells it best:

A woman from the past. A
cyborg with no future. They have every reason to mistrust each other but one: survival.

When Nell Stafford passed out it was 2012. When she wakes up naked
aboard a starship it’s 2138, and she’s surrounded by the Syn-En: synthetically-enhanced soldiers with a grudge against humans like her. She doesn’t know where she is or what’s happened, only that her life has been destroyed and everyone she’s ever known is dead.

Their leader Beijing York has just discovered his
people’s creators–humans–have betrayed them. They were promised freedom
and equality in exchange for settling a newly discovered planet at the other side
of a wormhole. But the Syn-En have outlived their usefulness.

The offer was a trick.

The wormhole has collapsed, and now both Nell and the Syn-En are trapped far, far from Earth to face almost certain death.

Bei has lost his future, and Nell has lost her past.

But Nell gained something in her 120-year sleep; somehow, she knows everything the Syn-En need to survive. Now she must convince Bei and his people to trust her–as soon as she learns to trust the
mysterious intelligence.

What
inspired you to write this book?
I
read an article in US News and World Report about the next generation of
prostheses being tested on injured military personnel. These limbs would
incorporate sensors and a computer chip that would allow the brain to interact
with the next limb, giving a better range of mobility and finer motor skills
than current prostheses. From here, it was a matter of asking an author’s
favorite question: What if? And before I knew it I had created a group of
cyborgs that basically needed to save mankind. Then I drew upon the Knights
Templar history and had the humans they saved turn against them in a power
play.

Excerpt:
Nell is in for a culture
shock:


“Is that what you call it?” Nell planted two feet on his knees and
shoved away from him. His hold on her breasts remained strong and her action
tore at her chest. Pain overloaded her nervous system and static crackled
inside her head. The only way she could escape would be if she gave herself a
rather excruciating mastectomy. Panting through the sensation, Nell stopped
struggling and hung limply between her captors. “Cause from where I stand,
you’re copping a feel.”
Ignoring her sarcasm, the man focused on her chest. A burst of yellow light
filled the room, highlighting the caduceus tattooed on his forehead. “You
may feel a mild discomfort as the probes enter your skin.”
Nell struggled to reconcile the caduceus with her current treatment. Why would
a man with a medical insignia torture her? Unless he wasn’t out to harm her.
Hadn’t the Grace Jones wannabe said Nell would get along with a bang? A
stabbing pain flared up her chest, then a burning filled her veins like an IV running too fast. Cold air stung her teeth as she inhaled.
“Mild! That hurts like an infected hangnail. Why didn’t you give me some
sort of local anesthetic to numb the area?”
“It would have reacted with the peroxides.” His grip on her breasts
loosened, but his attention didn’t waver from the damaged skin. “I do not
believe you would survive the explosion. You are quite fragile.”
Nell snorted. Fragile people didn’t survive the pandemic of 2010 or the North
American invasion that followed. She was a survivor, yet somehow she sensed
that someone had changed the rules, if not the game entirely. “That woman
injected something in my breasts to make them explode?”
The doctor nodded. “A peroxide and a catalyst, that when mixed together
create a very powerful bomb.”

Nell pulled her legs closer to her body, wanting desperately to cover herself or to fall asleep and wake up safe in her bed. “That’s just wrong.”

What
exciting story are you working on next?
Currently
I’m working on a sequel to my apocalyptic book, Redaction called Melt Down. In
it, the people that we met in the first book are trying to make their way out
of Phoenix, Arizona
to the safety of some abandoned mines in Colorado
before the thousands of stored spent nuclear fuel rods begin their melt down,
basically sterilizing most of the Earth’s surface. If my sarcastic font was
working, I’d say the future was so bright it practically glowed. J
When
did you first consider yourself a writer?
I
still don’t really consider myself a writer. Probably because I can’t make a
living off of it, yet. I consider myself a storyteller because I really write
to tell the stories and I do it for the love, not the money. Although, I
wouldn’t be opposed to doing it for the money. I could buy a lot of books with
money.
Do
you write full-time?
Alas, no. But one day, I know I will.
If
not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I
work as an organic chemist for a water laboratory. I usually write at night
when I get off of work but I have an ipad so I can make notes during the day
and this helps me focus my hours at night. I used to use sticky notes but then
got lost, so the ipad works much better. I try to write on weekends but am not
always successful—family and hubby want their time too.
What
would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I
write extremely intricate plots but I can’t plot. If I do try to plot my brain
figures I already wrote the story so I can’t write the story. And while I have
lots of story ideas I can’t write until I get just the right characters to
bring those stories to life. Sometimes I’m waiting a very long time.
As
a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I
so wanted to be an Egyptologist, but then I learned I was extremely
claustrophobic and there went that. Then I wanted to be a nurse, but my family
told me I couldn’t because I was too smart. I never understood that comment, as
nurses are pretty smart people. In the end I just fell into science and was
planning to go into the Peace Corps but I met my husband, married and became
pregnant so then I switched to laboratory work. I love bench work and my husband
and I may still join the Peace Corps after we retire.
Anything
additional you want to share with the readers?
The
Syn-En Solution
is on sale for 99 cents for the length of the tour then it will
go up to 2.99, so please take advantage of the lower price. Also, I plan to
write more books in the series, but it’ll be next year until the third book
comes out. Until then, I have a question for you: Have you ever seen the future
in an invention?

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