Mastodon The Writing Desk: Special Guest Interview with Eric Schumacher, Author of Sigurd’s Swords (Olaf’s Saga, Book 2)

9 July 2021

Special Guest Interview with Eric Schumacher, Author of Sigurd’s Swords (Olaf’s Saga, Book 2)

Available on Amazon UK and Amazon US

AD 968. It has been ten summers since the noble sons of the North, Olaf and Torgil, were driven from their homeland by the treachery of the Norse king, Harald Eriksson. Having then escaped the horrors of slavery in Estland, they now fight among the Rus in the company of Olaf’s uncle, Sigurd.

I'm pleased to welcome author Eric Schumacher to The Writing Desk:

Tell us about your latest book.

Thank you for having me on your blog! The latest book is the second book in my series about Olaf Tryggvason, who is one of the more colourful Vikings of the 10th century. The first book, Forged by Iron, tells the story of how Olaf was driven from his home in Norway by the treachery of his kinsman. Sigurd’s Swords recounts Olaf’s time fighting by his uncle’s side in the kingdom of the Rus (which we know today as Russia, Belarus and Ukraine). It is a tumultuous time in that area of the world and Olaf and his oath-sworn friend, Torgil, must use all of their cunning and all of their skill to stay alive.

What is your preferred writing routine?

Ah, I wish I had a daily routine. I have a day job, so my writing happens when I can find the time. Usually at night or on the weekends. I suppose the common thread, though, is that I need about two to three hours of quiet, uninterrupted time. Any longer and I find my writing starts to go stale. Any shorter than an hour and I feel like I haven’t had time to get into a groove.

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Keep writing! Writing is a craft, and the only way you improve is by writing more. Oh, and find a good editor.

What have you found to be the best way to raise awareness of your books?

I’ve found blog tours like this one to be great ways to raise early awareness. After that initial boost, I’ve found a combination of advertising, promotions, and give-aways to work well. My publisher has historically taken care of the advertising and promotions, but I know it’s kept my books consistently visible on Amazon, which is my main retailer.

Tell us something unexpected you discovered during your research.

The one that stands out most is from an eyewitness account of a battle fought on the Danube in AD 971. It is a battle in which my characters find themselves toward the end of the book. In the historical account, written by a Byzantine eyewitness to the battle, the Greeks find female warriors among the dead Rus/Vikings. The existence of female Viking warriors is an ongoing debate among historians, but apparently, in this battle, they were there, at least according to this one eyewitness.

What was the hardest scene you remember writing?

One of the book’s main characters, a female named Turid, is torn between her desire to follow her dream and the pressure she feels to do what society demands of her. The main character, Torgil, has difficulty understanding her dilemma and has his own personal feelings, too. All of this comes to a head in one particular scene in the book. I really wanted to get it right because it was so important for each character’s development and also for the plot, and so I laboured over each word, each body movement, and each expression. I must have written that scene ten different times.

What are you planning to write next?

Next up for me is book 3 in Olaf’s Saga, which will place Olaf in Northern Germany fighting for the German king, Otto II. I’ve already begun the writing and hope to release it late next year (2022).

Eric Schumacher
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About the Author

Eric Schumacher is an American historical novelist who currently resides in Santa Barbara, California, with his wife and two children. He was born and raised in Los Angeles and attended college at the University of San Diego. At a very early age, Eric discovered his love for writing and medieval European history, as well as authors like J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. Those discoveries continue to fuel his imagination and influence the stories he tells. His first novel, God's Hammer, was published in 2005. Find out more at Eric's website: and find him on Facebook and Twitter @DarkAgeScribe

1 comment:

  1. A really interesting interview.
    Thank you so much for hosting the blog tour for Sigurd’s Swords (Olaf’s Saga, Book 2).


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