Axe of Iron: The Settlers by J.A. Hunsinger


About the Author:

J. A. Hunsinger lives in Colorado, USA, with his wife Phyllis. The first novel of his character-driven, historical fiction series, Axe of Iron: The Settlers, represents his first serious effort to craft the story of a lifelong interest in the Viking Age—especially as it pertains to Norse exploration west of Iceland—and extensive research and archaeological site visitations as an amateur historian. He has tied the discovery of many of the Norse artifacts found on this continent to places and events portrayed in his novels.

Much of his adult life has been associated with commercial aviation, both in and out of the cockpit. As an Engineering Technical Writer for Honeywell Commercial Flight Systems Group, Phoenix, AZ, he authored two comprehensive pilots’ manuals on aircraft computer guidance systems and several supplemental aircraft radar manuals. His manuals were published and distributed worldwide to airline operators by Honeywell Engineering, Phoenix, AZ. He also published an article, Flight Into Danger, in Flying Magazine, (August 2002).Historical Novel Society, American Institute of Archaeology, Canadian Archaeology Association, and IBPA-Independent Book Publishers Association, are among the fraternal and trade organizations in which he holds membership.

You can visit his website at http://www.vinlandpublishing.com/.

About the Book:

The first novel of a continuing character-driven tale of a medieval people whose wanderlust and yearning for adventure cause them to leave the two established settlements on Greenland and sail west, to the unexplored land later referred to as Vinland.Eirik the Red established Eiriksfjord in 986 and later Lysufjord, 400-miles to the north. Just 22-years later, new settlers from the homelands found all the best land already occupied, the fragile Arctic environment strained by too many people and animals on too little arable land.Under the capable leadership of Halfdan Ingolfsson and his lieutenant, Gudbjartur Einarsson, 315 men, women, and children set sail from Greenland in the spring of 1008, bound for the unexplored continent across the western ocean.Standing in their way are uncounted numbers of indigenous people, the pre-historical ancestors of the Cree (Naskapi), Ojibwa (Anishinabeg), and Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) Indians. From the outset, these native people strenuously resist the incursion of these tall, pale-skinned invaders.

Two calamitous events occur that pave the way for the hostile beginnings of an assimilation process to occur between these disparate peoples. The way is rocky and fraught with danger at every turn, but the acceptance and friendship that develops between the Northmen and the Naskapi over an affair of honor, the eventual acceptance of a young boy of the Northmen by his Haudenosaunee captors, and a scenario that seems ordained by the will of the gods, makes it all begin to fall into place, as it must for the Northmen to survive.See the saga unfold, in this first book of the Axe of Iron series, through the eyes of the characters as each day brings a continuation of the toil, love, hardship, and danger that they come to expect in this unforgiving new land.

I was lucky enough to be able to ask the author some questions. Here is what he had to say:
Could you please tell us a little about your book?

Axe of Iron: The Settlers is the first novel of a continuing character-driven tale of a medieval people whose wanderlust and yearning for adventure cause them to leave the two established settlements on Greenland and sail west, to the unexplored land later referred to as Vinland.
Eirik the Red established Eiriksfjord in 986 and later Lysufjord, 400-miles to the north. Just 22-years later, new settlers from the homelands found all the best land already occupied, the fragile Arctic environment strained by too many people and animals on too little arable land.
Under the capable leadership of Halfdan Ingolfsson and his lieutenant, Gudbjartur Einarsson, 315 men, women, and children set sail from Greenland in the spring of 1008, bound for the unexplored continent across the western ocean.

Standing in their way are uncounted numbers of indigenous people, the pre-historical ancestors of the Cree (Naskapi), Ojibwa (Anishinabeg), and Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) Indians. From the outset, these native people strenuously resist the incursion of these tall, pale-skinned invaders.
Two calamitous events occur that pave the way for the hostile beginnings of an assimilation process to occur between these disparate peoples. The way is rocky and fraught with danger at every turn, but the acceptance and friendship that develops between the Northmen and the Naskapi over an affair of honor, the eventual acceptance of a young boy of the Northmen by his Haudenosaunee captors, and a scenario that seems ordained by the will of the gods, makes it all begin to fall into place, as it must for the Northmen to survive.

See the saga unfold, in this first book of the Axe of Iron series, through the eyes of the characters as each day brings a continuation of the toil, love, hardship, and danger that they come to expect in this unforgiving new land.

Did something specific happen to prompt you to write this book?

There are those of us who contend that the settlers of Norse Greenland assimilated with the pre-historical natives of North America. My novels are dedicated, in part, to them, the four thousand settlers who disappeared. I believe that they did not disappear; rather they assimilated over the course of the five hundred year history of the Norse Greenland settlements. I show this assimilation process, in my five book Axe of Iron series, through the eyes of my characters, from both a Norse and pre-historical native perspective. You will note that I do not refer to them as Indians, for the time that I depict is five hundred years before Columbus erroneously called the natives of the islands of Hispaniola, Indians.

Who or what is the inspiration behind this book?

My Swedish/German heritage gave me a lifelong interest in the Vikings. My studies and research on the subject opened a window to the many opportunities for a writer to craft a story using fiction to convey topics of a historical nature. My writing focus is exclusively on the Norse people who voyaged west of Iceland in 986, settling Greenland and portions of North America in the tenth and eleventh centuries. In my character-driven novels, I combine the scant history of the medieval Greenland Norse people that we have, along with my own imagination, to craft a plausible story about their still unexplained disappearance.

Who is your biggest supporter?

My wife, Phyllis. Without her love and advocacy, I never would have finished the first book, Axe of Iron: The Settlers.

Your biggest critic?

Myself! It is difficult to remain positive. Writing and publication are the most difficult undertakings of my life.

What cause are you most passionate about and why?

I am most passionate about telling the story of the disappearance of Greenland Norse people. Nobody knows what happened to them. I try to tell their story from my own perspective, as my research has indicated.

In the last year have you learned or improved on any skills?

I have learned the publishing business and my writing continues to improve because of daily exposure.

Do you have any rituals you follow when finishing a piece of work?

For success, everything must be ritualistic. I read the manuscript through for content, making certain there are no anomalies. If you are talking about the first draft, I then transmit the ms to my editor. I do all editing online. When the manuscript is as good as it can be I send it electronically to my printer for the composition/format phase of the publication process. This phase is backed up with a hardcopy and disk of the ms, a hardcopy and disk of the graphics, and a complete hardcopy of the order of the book’s contents, all FedEx’d to my account executive at BookMasters

What is the most important thing in your life right now?

I want to finish the task of telling my tale as I have always believed it happened.

What are you currently working on?

The second book of the continuing series, Axe of Iron: Confrontation is in the edit process.

Do you have any advice for writers or readers?

Do your homework on the submission guidelines for any query. All will have their own guidelines; adhere to them absolutely. Do not ever send a manuscript unless it is requested. Hire professional editors to edit everything that another person will read, especially the final draft of your manuscript. An English teacher is not an editor and you cannot edit your own work, so hire someone. Your professionalism will determine whether you ever make the grade. A shabby cover letter on your submission packet will guarantee its demise. Agents and publishers are busy people and they have no time to waste on people who do not follow the submission guidelines.

What do you feel sets this book apart from others in the same genre?

I tell the story of the Greenland Norse people, in a fictional sense, through their eyes, to give their individual lives, their very existence, a meaning in a manner that no novelist has ever undertaken.

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Of course, I am a writer. J
Axe of Iron: The Settlers is available on my website:
http://www.vinlandpublishing.com/
from my distributor: http://www.atlasbooks.com/marktplc/02175.htm, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, Books-a-Million, and other major booksellers nationwide and in Canada at: chapters.indigo.ca
e-Books are available at http://theebooksale.com/, The-Plot-Thickens, Amazon Kindle, and several other outlets nationwide.

Thank you.
Best Regards,
Jerry

WIN PRIZES!!!

AXE OF IRON VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR '09 will officially begin on March 2 and end on April 30. You can visit J.A's blog stops at http://www.virtualbooktours.wordpress.com/ in March and April to find out more about this talented author!As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors' blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available.




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1 comments:

J. A. Hunsinger said...

Good Morning, Tracee,

What a terrific post, thank you so much.

Have a great day!

Jerry