- Released: June 3rd, 2017
- Pages: 285
This is the story of a true Viking hero you won’t learn in schools. Gustav the Great. Gustav the Powerful. Gustav the Dragon Slayer. A story so fantastic and shocking not even the History Channel would dare turn it into a TV series.
Every word of it is true. Totally true. How do I know? Because it’s all about me. Gustav Gustavson – Legendary Viking Warrior.
Experience the awesomeness of my unexpected voyage to an undiscovered land where I survive shipwrecks, arena death match spectacles, rampaging rhinoceraptors, naked and rather surly giants, and even dragons! Well, a dragon… all in my pursuit of fame and glory.
From the Author:
Gustav Gustavson, Legendary Viking Warrior, approached me in early 2017 to write his biography. I jumped at the chance, for how could I pass up such a fantastic opportunity?
Him being a large and intimidating Viking had little bearing on me readily agreeing to be the author of his tale. His entire life is one of awesome and wonder, inexplicably erased from history by jealous rivals.
This book will help set the record straight once and for all. What you’ll read here is his story in his own words. I was the mere conduit through which his fantastical words flowed.
It may read like a mash-up of Viking lore, comedic fantasy, and a little bit of Dungeons and Dragons, but he assures me every word of it is true.
This story took shape after I’d been reviewing many of the story ideas I’d written down over the years. There were a number that were half fleshed out, such as an idea for a comedic fantasy novel involving some of the main characters that made it into this book.
I was also watching Vikings (History Channel) at the time I was mulling over my story ideas when inspiration struck. Thus came the idea to mash-up my idea for a comedic fantasy with Vikings, and also to sprinkle some D&D inspired ideas into as well. After that I decided to write is a satirical fictional biography, so ultimately it’s a mash up of a number of different genres.
Once I got to work mapping out the entire novel and was surprised when I looked into it further just how much I had in the way of plot ideas. The end result is quite close to that initial idea. Changes in direction happened occasionally as will normally happen while writing a book. Sometimes it demands a certain direction and I can’t help but follow.
The idea for the rather long title came after I’d been thinking about how to make sure the book came across as comedic fantasy and not just straight-up fantasy.
Most of the main cast of characters came from the comedic fantasy idea. Laika, Tayden, Grogall, and Ounce were all part of that original idea. Laika for the entire first draft was called “Eliska”, a character name I’d already used in a short story.
When I’d thrown down my ideas for the fantasy novel I’d planned that for her name, but ultimately decided against reusing it. After stumbling across an article on Laika (one of the first animals sent into space) I borrowed the name.
Gustav was originally planned as Bjorg, but after a quick search Wikipedia told me it was a feminine name so I swapped it for Gustav.
His surname came about as I was building his origin. Raised on a diet of self-congratulatory bragging by his father, Gustav, it was a simple step to realise his father would have named his first-born after himself. Thus, Gustav Gustavson was born.
Many of the other characters I made up as I went, and most of them survived through to the released edition. A couple were tweaked slightly, but there aren’t any interesting stories about them.
I struggled quite a bit coming up with a cover I liked for this one. Below is a quick progression of how the cover art matured over time. The first (lame) attempt was mainly to get the bones of the idea in place (such as the Viking long boat at sea) and then go from there.
I had a brainwave late one night that the cover I’d settled on was a little too flat and it might look good if it was stacked-paper. So I got to work editing the artwork which resulted (after a few horrendous attempts) in the new cover design shown at the top of this page.