Growing up, there was nothing I enjoyed more than turning on the television and slipping in one of my many VHS tapes for a couple hours of hard pounding action. I've always been fascinated by a good battle—preferably a battle between two monstrous powers (Luke Skywalker vs. Darth Vader, Bruce Lee vs. Chuck Norris, King Kong vs. Godzilla—Godzilla should have won that!). There was just something about that feeling of: ‘whoa, this adversary is bad arse! How on earth is the hero going to beat him?’ Or: ‘when they clash it’s going to be a great battle, because both of them are ridiculously powerful.’ Then, they’d meet, eye to eye, on the battle grounds, just like Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris met in ‘Way of the Dragon’, and the lightning-fast kicks to heavy pounding punches to a hundred graceful moves of the martial arts would begin. Oh yeah, that used to get my adrenaline pumping, it still does! …maybe it’s a guy thing.
Cartoons were big for me as well. He-Man and She-Ra (I must admit, She-Ra was the first woman who made me feel powerless, or ‘crushed’, if you know what I mean. I was head over heels in love with that Princess of Power!), Thundercats, Silverhawks, Mask, Gobots and Transformers. Anything that had something to do with a transformation of form or power really caught my attention.
Then, when I was twenty-one years old, I saw the greatest action cartoon in perhaps the entire universe, Dragonball Z! All right, I admit, it’s the easiest cartoon to poke fun at, especially whenever the warriors are ‘powering up’. It sounds like they’re constipated. But the flashy colors of their chaotic energies, and the thunderous battles (accompanied by an epic soundtrack) caught my attention immediately. It wasn’t long after I had wanted to write a novel that I imagined my own characters having battles of a similar setting: transformations, the raising of energy, flashy colors, chaotic explosions, feelings of desperation when the adversary has you beaten, etc. Of course, all of this means nothing if your characters are dull, but it set the stage for the way I would play out battle scenes in my ‘Guardian of the Seventh Realm’ series.
That’s where my Nasharin Race comes from. Akira Toriyama (creator of the DBZ Manga) is by far the biggest influence for me when it comes to battle scenes and warrior transformations. J.R.R. Tolkien, and my own personal beliefs on spirituality, is where the rest of my influences stem.
As for Nasharins, they are definitely the most interesting class of warrior in my series. Being half-wizard/half human, lusting after energy like a vampire thirsts for blood, and having the ability to evolve or transform into figures of extravagant power and beautified form, my hope is that many readers will find them exciting and colorful, enjoying the long journey I have paved ahead for them, right up until the end of book five “Rise of the Guardian”, where my series finally comes to a close. At least for now.