We are fortunate to have Lockie (Lockard) Young on 4Q this Friday. Lockie has written a YA novel, Ryan’s Legend, published by Morning Rain Publishers of Ontario and is happily working on the sequel. He is a familiar guest on the South Branch Scribbler with several of his entertaining short stories being featured. Lockie has been showcased on many blogs, recommended reading sites and most recently in the Times Transcript, Moncton’s major daily. You can find out more about Lockie, more of his poems and witty ramblings, by clicking his link below.
4Q: Thanks for being a part of the Scribbler, Lockie. Sometime ago you and your wife, Trish, visited South Africa. You brought back many great photos and as many memories I expect. Did this visit to a foreign country so far away, or the people, have any influence on your writing or inspirations?
LY: Africa was amazing. I can’t put my finger on it, and not to sound corny, but Africa had a profound effect on me, almost like a religious experience. When I stepped off the plane, it was like coming home, and I am not a person who likes the heat, so this was confusing for me. The people we met were so friendly, and it really felt like family when these strangers welcomed us into their homes and their lives. When I got back to Canada, and things settled down and my wife and I got back to work and a normal life again, I found I couldn’t stop writing about my other home, Africa. I have several poems inspired by the amazing animals we saw there. The traditional animals like Giraffe and Zebra, which to me were only pictures in National Geographic magazine before, had been right there, outside our car window. My wife and I toured South Africa and Swaziland with my father in law and mother in law. My short story and poem titled Diary of an Orphan was inspired by a visit to an orphanage in Swaziland.
4Q: What can you tell us about the sequel to Ryan’s Legend?
LY: The working title is Ryan’s Legend Returns, and picks up where the first story leaves off. It’s summer break, and the main character, Ryan, has a few adventures with his best friend Cory. Ryan teaches Cory, a city boy, about life along the sea shore, all the while anxiously awaiting the return of his other ‘Legendary’ friend Willie. Parts of the sequel were written at the same time as Ryan’s Legend, back in 1995, and were in fact all one book back then. On the advice of a self published Author and Publisher at the time, I split the original manuscript into two parts, as it was thought to be too long for a middle grade reader.
After my first book, was picked up by Morning Rain Publishing I worked on finishing and adding to the second half, which is more than twice as long as Ryan’s Legend. It is currently being considered, and I am waiting on word if Morning Rain wants to publish it. I hope it will get picked up, and maybe be published later this year.
4Q: Please share a childhood anecdote or memory.
LY: Some of my readers and fans may know that I am a Plumber by trade, but long before I became a Plumber, when I was just a boy of maybe seven or eight years of age, I went with my Mom and Dad to visit relatives in a small community not too far from Moncton, called Harcourt. While there I asked if I could go to the bathroom, and I was directed to a small out building in back of the house. I could tell as soon as I opened the door that I was in the right place. When I returned to where the adults had gathered in the parlor, I was asked what had taken me so long. And I answered that I was very sorry, but I had searched that darn building all over and I just couldn’t find the flush handle for the toilet.
4Q: Please tell us what’s in store for us in the future; what else you’re working on?
LY: As you know, Allan, I lost my right leg last year to arterial disease caused by smoking a pack a day for 30 some years, and during my recovery, and adjustment to a drastic lifestyle change, I’ve been writing as part of the healing process. I’ve written several short stories and a couple of, what I’ve discovered are called ‘personal essays’ and I am also working on a memoir of my personal journey on this new road as an amputee. The memoir is a step outside of the box for me as I’ve never written a nonfiction work, and I find it both challenging and therapeutic as I revisit the past 2 years of my life. So, when I get stuck with what to write in the next novel in the ‘Legend’ series, and I need a change of pace or scenery, I pick up where I left off in my memoir, or I change genres and try my hand at another short story. I may see if my publisher is interested in a compilation of my short stories. I haven’t written any poetry lately, but I have to be inspired for that too. The other day, when I was stuck on ‘The Legend Never Dies’ (working Title) I opened up a new word doc and I just wrote and wrote all day, missing lunch and almost missing supper, until I wrote The End at last. The word count on Paradise White is 8000 words, and I hope to whittle that short story down in edits. So that is how I roll. I took an early retirement because of my new physical limitations, and now I am fortunate that I can write whenever I want and I am enjoying the freedom to do what I really truly love to do.
You have been a tremendous supporter of your fellow authors, sharing, giving us a pat on the back, being a nice guy so thanks Lockie on behalf of us all. Keep those stories coming.
Please visit Lockie’s Lectern at www.lockardyoung.worpress.com
Next week I will offer 4 teasers of my short story compilation SHORTS Vol.1. As well as what inspired these stories. The SHORT series is dedicated to my grandchildren with Vol. 1 for my oldest grandson, Matthieu. Vol. 2 will be published in September, with Vol. 3 to follow in November.