"My breakthrough as a reader was when I discovered the European adventure story writers - Alexander Dumas, Robert Louis Stevenson, Sir Walter Scott, to name a few." -- Terry Brooks
Terence Dean "Terry" Brooks (born January 8, 1944) is an American writer of fantasy fiction. He writes mainly epic fantasy, and has also written two movie novelizations. He has written 22 New York Times bestsellers during his writing career, and has over 21 million copies of his books in print. He is one of the biggest-selling living fantasy writers.
"A world in which elves exist and magic works offers greater opportunities to digress and explore.""After all, you put a lot into creating a universe and everything that goes with it, and it seems a shame to use it only once.""Anyway, several rewrites later, Del Rey Books did publish my first novel, and it did become the first work of fiction on the New York Times trade paperback bestseller list.""Even after Sword was published, I was still only thinking about the next book, Elfstones.""Fantasy is the only canvas large enough for me to paint on.""For a writer, its very attractive to stay in one world for a time.""Growing up, I didn't have a lot of toys, and personal entertainment depended on individual ingenuity and imagination - think up a story and go live it for an afternoon.""Hurt leads to bitterness, bitterness to anger, travel too far that road and the way is lost.""I didn't want readers to have to make allowances for what they couldn't see, but to be able to say to themselves that the fabric of the magic detailed was perfectly believable.""I have learned to do more with less, so you don't see the big books anymore.""I haven't made up my mind about doing anymore Landover books.""I might add that you change as a person as you grow older, so you change as a writer, too.""I remember one winter, when I was about five or six, I spent three days with another boy, tracking a bobcat that had been sighted in another county fifty miles away, but which I was sure had come into our neighborhood.""I think I make better use of language and imagery than when I started out.""I want to kick-start your imagination and let you discover the places it can take you.""I want you, as a reader, to experience what I experience, to let that other world, that imaginary world that I have created, tell you things about the real world.""In bad weather, I spent hours drawing action figures on paper, coloring them, backing them on cardboard, then cutting them out and creating whole stories around their lives.""My interests are different now than they were thirty years ago.""On the other hand, I still approach each book with the same basic plan in mind - to put some people under severe stress and see how they hold up.""Testing of self is a regular part of our own lives, so it seems natural to make it a part of the lives of my characters, as well, albeit on a much different level.""We are constantly being put to the test by trying circumstances and difficult people and problems not necessarily of our own making.""We forget that what matters begins with the imagination.""Well, I think that as a country, we've drifted away from appreciating the importance of imagination.""What I want to write about has changed somewhat, and the scope of the storytelling has changed accordingly.""When I was a kid, we had to rely on our imaginations for entertainment.""Writing fantasy lets me imagine a great deal more than, say, writing about alligators, and lets me write about places more distant than Florida, but I can tell you things about Florida and alligators, let you make the connection all on your own."
Brooks was born in the rural midwestern town of Sterling, Illinois, and spent a large part of his life living there. He is an alumnus of Hamilton College, earning his B.A. in English literature in 1966. He later obtained a J.D. from Washington and Lee University. He was a practicing attorney before becoming a full-time author and now resides in Seattle, Washington, with his wife, Judine.
Brooks had been a writer since high school, writing mainly in the genres of science fiction, western, fiction, and non-fiction. One day, in his early college life, he was given a copy of The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, which inspired him to write in one genre. While Tolkien inspired the genre, Brooks stated at the Charlotte Literary Festival that he credits the inspiration of his style of writing to William Faulkner's works. With this inspiration, he then made his debut in 1977 with his first novel The Sword of Shannara. This novel became the first fantasy book ever to appear on the New York Times bestseller list, where it stayed for five months.
After finishing two sequels to The Sword of Shannara, Brooks moved on to the series which would become known as the Landover novels. Brooks then wrote a four-book series titled The Heritage of Shannara. For the next fourteen years, he wrote more Landover books, then went on to write The Word and Void trilogy. Continuing the Shannara series, Brooks wrote the prequel to The Sword of Shannara, titled First King of Shannara. He then wrote two series, The Voyage of the Jerle Shannara and High Druid of Shannara and recently finished a third, Genesis of Shannara, a trilogy bridging his Word and Void and Shannara series. His latest project, A Princess of Landover, was released in August 2009.Legends of Shannara, a duology taking place after the events of Genesis of Shannara, is in the works. The first installment, entitled Bearers of the Black Staff, is set for release in August of 2010. Brooks is currently working on the second installment of the duology, the title still under construction.