Author Spotlight – Greta van der Rol
Thanks so much for having me here, Susan. It was great to chat with you recently about the stars and astrophotography. And just that one sentence says a lot about me. Although I have a degree in history and I can’t add up to save my life, I love reading about astronomy, exoplanets, Pluto, Rosetta and all the fascinating things happening in the universe. And I love my camera.
I suppose one of the reasons I write space opera is because of my interest in space. Who wouldn’t want to hop around the star systems having adventures? I adore Star Wars, can’t wait until December when Star Wars VII will hit the screens. Way back in the seventies I enjoyed the original Star Wars (A New Hope) and ABSOLUTELY ADORED The Empire Strikes Back. Saw it four times in the first week, I did – and many, many times since. Mind you, in my books I try to make my science a bit more realistic than George Lucas did. You can’t just hop over to the next planet if the hyperdrive dies.
I’ve always read science fiction – Asimov, Heinlein, Clarke, McDevitt, Moon and the like. But I always felt that they glossed over, or ignored, the romance component of life as we know it, so my space opera includes a dollop of romance. My Iron Admiral books are set against the prospect of inter-species war (that’s the space opera bit) but they’re about two extraordinary people having to cope with each other, as well as the forces intent on causing a galactic catastrophe. They’re the first two of my Ptorix Empire series. My Morgan Selwood books are set in a universe where Humanity has faced the possibility of extinction at the hands of the machines, and rebuilt itself over thousands of years. That’s why Morgan is a very human cyborg. Nobody wants artificial intelligences to take over again. I introduced Morgan and her world in my novelette, Supertech. She goes on from there to star in a full length adventure, Morgan’s Choice, where she meets my favourite admiral, Ashkar Ravindra. I’m told I do hot admirals well. 🙂
My most recent publication, The Demon’s Eye, has joined A Matter of Trust in The Dryden Universe. I’m one of a number of writers who have set our stories in a shared universe under a collective commons copyright. That means while I retain copyright for my story, other writers can use my settings and my characters in their own stories, rather like fan fiction. It’s an experiment. It worked for Star Wars, Star Trek etc. Dryden has more alien species than my other two universes. But you’ll find another hot admiral in AMoT. I can’t help myself.
Back to that camera. Photography is what I do when I’m not writing or cooking. My subjects are almost always landscapes or animals. I have a particular passion for photographing movement, capturing that moment in time that’s often too fast for us humans to actually see. Flying birds and breaching whales are special favourites. And because I love animals, I’ve also written a couple of paranormal books about weretigers. I donate any profits from those to two charities – the David Shepherd conservation group that helps wild tigers, and Carolina Tiger, a shelter in the USA that aids some of the many thousands of tigers in the USA which are bought as domestic pets by deluded people who soon find they can’t cope with a five hundred pound wild beast in their backyard.
I’m always happy to connect with readers. You’ll find me at http://gretavanderrol.net. There are links to my books, my photos (I sell some on Dreamstime, Canstock and RedBubble) and my social media profiles.
Please – come and say hi.
**** I can’t help but note that I absolutely LOVE Greta’s books!!!