Sailor takes novel approach to writing

Ordinary Seaman Logan J. Hunder

Ordinary Seaman Logan J. Hunder

Peter Mallett, Staff Writer ~

A young sailor says he is pleasantly surprised with the reaction, sales, and the hopefully uproarious laughter being generated by his first-ever novel.

Ordinary Seaman Logan J. Hunder works as a Naval Communicator aboard HMCS Vancouver, and is also the author of Witches Be Crazy, a quirky paperback novel that has developed a cult following.

It is best described as one-part fantasy and two-parts comedy. He says his book is a deliberate Murphy’s Law-style comedic attack on the classic medieval quest story where everything can and will go wrong.

He began writing Witches Be Crazy in 2014 after completing a degree in Criminal Justice at Camosun College. After its release in 2015, OS Hunder has been attracting a loyal following and receiving mostly favourable reviews. He also admits he never anticipated his writing would ever be published.

“The book was my first attempt at a real writing project, and I wasn’t sure if anything was going to come of it. When I was in college, I was completely focused on my studies and by the end I was sick of the rigid structure of academic papers, so I eventually turned to creative writing as an outlet. I thought I would just put my writing in a binder and show it to the odd friend and that was about it.”

Before putting his novel into storage, OS Hunder decided to shop it around with the hope of finding an agent and publisher. He did.

The book was released last summer by San Francisco-based Skyhorse Publishing. His farcical fantasy novel has already surpassed sales of 2,500 copies and is now going into its second printing.

The story takes place in the mythical Kingdom of Jenair and focuses on a king who has fallen ill and his daughter who is ready to replace him. A cast of well-meaning but bumbling hopefuls join the quest to wed the young princess and are oblivious to the reality that she is nothing short of evil. The readers are introduced to several other characters who also fall well short of meeting archetypical expectations, including Sir Lee, a highly confused Knight, and Rainchild, a spiteful dark wizard.

OS Hunder says he leaned heavily on his experiences of playing Dungeons and Dragons and quest-style video games like World of Warcraft in writing Witches Be Crazy.  He says he also leaned heavily on the comedic genius of films such as Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Shaun of The Dead.

“All of my chapters and passages take comedic turns. In comedy anything unexpected or absurd can happen and you feel less bad if you pull something out of left field than if it’s a straight-laced quest story.”

He admits online reviews reveal one truth about his writing in that, “You either love it or hate it.”

Reviews on the website are largely favourable with one reader declaring Witches Be Crazy as the “perfect choice” that “delivers total entertainment.” A few other reviews were not so flattering, with one reader criticizing his work saying it “felt very lazy and stereotypical”.

Instead of dwelling on the successes, and criticisms, of his first book, he went to work on a second novel entitled Astro-Nuts, which was released April 2 of this year. Astro-Nuts takes a healthy swipe at the science fiction genre. It follows a space delivery ship and its widely-despised captain, as it mines and ships rocks back and forth between an asteroid belt and the moon.

OS Hunder is now shifting gears to a third book, a paperback that will satirize the murder mystery genre.

He joined the navy 18 months ago and says he is keeping alive his family’s naval tradition by sailing aboard Vancouver. His father, Chief Petty Officer Second Class (Retired) Glen Hunder served aboard multiple Royal Canadian Navy warships during his 38-year military career, but Vancouver was his last ship when he retired.

So far, his son is enjoying the challenges of working aboard a Canadian warship and what it offers.

“You come to work every single day and you never know what is going to happen,” said OS Hunder. “You could be doing specialized training or an honest day’s labour, but you get to interface with all sorts of people from different places across Canada and around the world. It helps my evolution as a writer as there is a camaraderie and bond in the military that you don’t find in a lot of other jobs.”

Filed Under: Top Stories

About the Author:

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Leave a Reply

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar.