An interview with Writer Des Pensable About his Divinity Seeds Trilogy


copyright Des Pensable 2017

Since everyone can’t attend the book release here’s what you might expect if you were there.

Interviewer: Des Pensable has just published the third and final book of his Divinity Seeds trilogy, Edge of Chaos. We’re going to find out a little about him and his story.

Interviewer: Is Des Pensable your real name?

Des Pensable: No. I learnt many years ago that people judge others by the origin of their name. I wanted people to judge me only on the quality of what I write. So I chose a pen name.

The word pensable comes from the French meaning thoughtful. The word dispensable generally is taken to mean something that can be discarded. So Des Pensable is a play on thoughts and concepts that can be used or discarded if you don’t like them.

Interviewer: Can you tell us a little about yourself.

Des Pensable: I was born in Sydney Australia and have lived there for most of my life. I was married and have two children and four grandchildren. I went to a public high school; I am a scientist. I’ve worked in a range of science jobs in private enterprise and government; I’ve travelled extensively around the world and spent considerable time camping and walking in wilderness areas.

Interviewer: You write on a wide range of topics. What is your favourite?

Des Pensable: I have written a lot on the issues surrounding Global Warming lately as I see it as the largest and most serious threat that our civilisation has ever faced. I have researched the data thoroughly and believe the science is correct. I’m convinced that if we continue as normal our civilisation will collapse and the survivors will live in a very inhospitable world for centuries to come.

I was pretty fired up on the subject a couple of years ago so I went to Canada and did one of Al Gore’s Climate Change leadership courses. It was a lot of fun and I met some great people. Since then I’ve concentrated on writing short stories, poems and satire about fracking, coal mining, climate change activism, protests and of course global warming politics.

However, my favorite project has been my epic fantasy trilogy Divinity Seeds which has been an epic journey in itself. It’s about half a million words long and was written over several years. The third part of the story has just been published.

Interviewer: What inspired you to write an epic fantasy?

Des Pensable: I got addicted to science fiction stories in high school. I read all the old classics from H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Isaac Asimov, Arthur C Clark, Frank Herbert, Robert Heinlein, John Wyndham etc. Then in 1975, my wife and I visited her grandparents in the UK and we heard about this story called Lord of the Rings. On my return I got a copy of it and The Hobbit and both my wife and I fell in love with that style of epic fantasy.

From then on I think we just about read every epic fantasy that we could get out hands on.  When my kids were old enough we started playing Dungeons and Dragons and built up a group of friends that played each week for years. During that period we often talked about writing stories but of course nobody got around to do it.

A few years ago, I had a bit of spare time and decided to write a novel size story based upon one of my Dungeon and Dragons characters who used psionics, a form of magic derived from the power of the mind. I was inspired here by the fantastic Golden Torque series by Julian May.

I was also interested in my character being able to shape change as it offered a lot of possibilities to discuss philosophical, ethical and moral issues within a fantasy story setting. I was inspired here by Mavin the Many Shaped by Sheri Tepper.

My first effort was a bit of a flop. Being a scientist my writing style was quite technical. I had to relearn how to write in a more interesting fantasy style. For this story, I decided to first write a concept story about the world, the creatures and characters in it and the basic plot line and subplots. That story was about 100 A4 pages long.

I then wrote the story in book 1 which grew larger and went through eight versions. Ideas flowed as I understood my characters better.  Eventually,  the story grew long enough for 3 books.  After book 3, I moved some of the chapters around, chopped out some chapters and wrote some more to flesh out the story to make it flow more naturally. I published the first part two years ago; the second part last year and now the third part of the story is available.

Interviewer: Can you tell us a bit about the characters in the story.

Des Pensable: My main characters are Aquitain, a roughly 20 year old male wizard. He’s a sort of magic technician whose job is the make and fix magic items in his grandfather’s shop in a city called Panmagica.  His world gets torn apart when he starts showing signs of becoming a shape changer. He runs foul of the law and is quickly shipped off to a remote planet called Mudrun to hide for a while.

Not long after arriving on the planet he runs into Miranda, a female druid about his age inflicted with a magic tattoo supposedly to protect her chastity and so starts an incredible journey of chaotic adventures together through three worlds, where they both grow from friends to frustrated lovers and from novices to dangerous masters of their magical art.

Interviewer: Can you tell us a little about the plot.

Des Pensable: The story starts in the city state of Panmagica and quickly moves to Mudrun a wilderness planet recovering from an apocalyptic magic storm called the Great Storm a few hundred years earlier. Aquitain gets a job with the local wizard and not long after, he starts getting drawn into strange happenings. He discovers a prophesy of a Time of Troubles which could create another apocalyptic storm and it seems he is somehow unwittingly involved.

I have discarded the good vs evil plot for the rarer chaos vs order plot. This allows my characters much more freedom when dealing with issues of morality which often vary owing to religious and cultural differences.

Aquitain discovers he is different to others. He is actually half newman / half dragon. He has been created to be an Agent of Chaos. He is told that no rules apply to him. In books 1 and 2 he is bound by his cultural upbringing as a Newman but later in book 3, when he accepts his true nature, he starts making his own rules. That’s when things get really interesting. We also discover that Miranda his partner in chaos has a carefully hidden past redefining her role.

The story ventures into spiritual areas when it explores what might be possible if his soul/ spirit could move out of his body and what sort of possibilities and problems that could cause.

Finally, both Aquitain and Miranda, his lover can shape change. This can create some real problems for a writer that most writers try to avoid. We are moving into a taboo area. People have dirty minds. How did I balance the possibilities that they could get into culturally unacceptable situations. You’ll have to read the story to find out.

I hope that I’ve steered a careful course through this potential minefield. There are, however, some passionate situations in this story that you won’t normally read in the classic epic fantasy story. The story was written for adults not children. I hope you enjoy it.

Sorry you missed out on the free wine and beer.

You can get a FREE ebook copy of the Book 3 Edge of Chaos until 31st December, 2017 here.

You can find out more about the story on the Divinity Seeds website.

Visit Des Pensible’s Graphiti web site for a wide variety of stories.

Join the Des Pensable Facebook site @despensablestories