Sunday, October 23, 2011

Who is Tom Averna? Another ATTMP Author for those of you like Wizards

Tom Averna, author of The Once and Future Wizard: The Awakening from All Things That Matter Press, is used to the weird and unusual in his life. At seven, he was saved from death by a Jacob’s Ladder type dream. By nine, he was being sought out by his mother’s friends for life advice. At 11, he had chosen to sleep outside in a nearby woods in a sleeping bag and woke up the next morning with a family of skunks resting comfortably near him. At 12, he was approached by one person who claimed to be a psychic and told that he was not from this planet. Shortly after that, another psychic told him he had been a great king in Ancient Greece discovering many secrets and also that he came back in this life for a special purpose. At 17 he was attacked by a possessed friend wielding a sword and saved himself and delivered his friend by semi-consciously speaking in a language unknown to him. Three times he was on the verge of drowning until he followed inner guidance to find his way to the surface and then safely to shore.

Averna’s life has also been filled with reading biographies, histories, classics but most of all sci fi and fantasies. Early on, he cut his reading teeth on Greek and Roman mythologies and then the entire Edgar Rice Burroughs series of Tarzan, John Carter of Mars, Pellucidar and the rest of the Martian sagas. He moved from these to sci fi devouring the classics from H.G. Wells and Jules Verne to the modern Asimov, Bradbury, Heinlein and Herbert. Two books and one series of books, though, truly changed his life in high school. Stranger in a Strange Land by Heinlein and Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda both awakened in Tom a desire to explore new ideas and spiritual philosophies. He became a seeker and a student of life. These avocations have remained a part of his life still four decades later. The series of books were written by J.R.R. Tolkein. This awakened in Tom a love of wizards, dragons, elves and anything Middle Earthish.  His spiritual quest would involve books about the weird and unusual like Van Daniken, Sitchin, Ralph Ellis and others.

But there was a third component to Averna’s life that dates back to the powerful dream he had at age 7. His life was filled with vivid and amazing dreams. Some prophetic, but most action and adventure dreams that almost felt like a double life for him. Some he wrote down as stories that would later be woven together as part of his first novel. Others were just a fascination. One in particular was an invention that might have made him rich had he chosen to follow through with it. Shortly after his 30th birthday in 1982 he had a particularly vivid dream set in the future, but it was an old west kind of town. In a saloon, some people were playing a card game and as an observer Tom realized that this was a way used in these times to settle differences. The winner of the game won the judgment of whatever was being contested. Upon a closer look at the cards on the table, it became apparent that this was no ordinary card deck. These cards contained images of fantasy characters and the players would role play with them using dice to allow an element of chance. Upon awakening Tom immediately began writing about the game and set up the rules and thought he should try to market the game. But instead, as many other dream opportunities presented to him, he kept them filed away. About eleven years later, he began to hear stories of a new role playing card game called Magic: The Gathering and it was very similar to what he had envisioned. He still has those scribbled sheets of the game as a reminder to believe in his dreams and be willing to take a chance.

The writing of The Once and Future Wizard series began, as mentioned, as a group of dreams, but really took form after reading Oedipus at Colonnus by Sophocles. In this account, Oedipus meets King Theseus in a cave just before death and there is some mystery surrounding it. This combined with dreams that Theseus and Merlin were one started him wondering if Oedipus had been the link to that transition. From there over several years, he began to craft the story. The veil between fiction and reality became blurred for Averna in the writing of it as at times it felt like recording a dream and at times it felt like taking dictation. So this novel became an accurate reflection of his life containing the three main parts of it. It is weird and unusual, it includes his dreams and it combines elements of his favorite books.

The Once and Future Wizard: The Awakening is the first of three books to come and it feels a bit like a roller coaster. The first book sets the stage and is like the climb up the tracks knowing the fall is coming. The second book will be like the first drop and the third will be a combination of the two. Join Tom on this journey and discover for yourself the truth and magic of who you are and the powerful being you were meant to be. Along the way you’ll also discover the truth about the ancient gods, the creation of the universe, what happened to the elves and the truth behind many other  mythologies.

The Once and Future Wizard: The Awakening from All Things That Matter Press is available in print at Amazon

1 comment:

  1. Tom Averna I predict will be a recognizable name in fantasy fiction one day soon!