Marc Graham is a bestselling author, speaker, story coach, and shamanic practitioner. He is also the developer of the Runes for Writers creativity system. When not on stage, in the studio, or bound to his computer, he can be found traipsing about Colorado’s Front Range with his wife and their Greater Swiss Mountain Dog.
The following is an interview with Marc Graham.
Each week, The Colorado Sun and Colorado Humanities & Center For The Book feature an excerpt from a Colorado book and an interview with the author. Explore the SunLit archives at coloradosun.com/sunlit.
What inspired you to write this book?
I had been studying the Norse Runes for some time in my own personal development practice. While meditating on the Runes (specifically, Nauthiz, the rune of innovation) the idea of using runecastings (similar to Tarot spreads) for solving story problems came to mind.
The more I explored the idea for my own writing and the stories of fellow authors, the power of the Runes to unlock the storytelling and problem-solving power of the Subconscious became more and more evident. This was something I had to share with other storytellers.
Place this excerpt in context. How does it fit into the book as a whole and why did you select it?
The excerpt comes from the latter third of the book. After detailing the 24 Runes and offering some sample runecastings, I explain the science of how divination actually works.
Many people view such practices and Tarot, Runes, etc. as frivolous at best, demonic at worst. But the truth is, they are simply tools for the practitioner to connect with their own subtler levels of consciousness. This excerpt helps to demystify the process and to provide an understanding of the psychology of writer’s block.
Tell us about creating this book: any research and travel you might have done, any other influences on which you drew?
I explored a number of sources on the Runes and runecasting, but my greatest influence was from my teacher and author, Michael William Denney. Mike has explored various esoteric practices for the past 30 years, and has syncretized Vedic, Taoist, and Western shamanic traditions into a practical, modern path for self-development.
What were the biggest challenges you faced, or surprises you encountered in completing this book?
This was my first independent publishing project, so learning all the intricacies of the publishing process was quite challenging, though rewarding at the same time.
Walk us through your writing process: Where and when do you write? What time of day? Do you listen to music, need quiet?
I generally write at home in the mornings, after exercising and meditating, when the connection to my subtler levels of consciousness is still strong from sleep. Editing and other business-related activities go later in the day.
I’ll usually have music going, either thematically related to what I’m working on (Two Steps from Hell are great for action sequences) or brainwave-type audio such as Brain.fm or other binaural beat tracks.
What’s your next project?
I’m developing a series of follow-on books relating to the Runes. Fiction-wise, I’m editing the first book in an action-adventure series and drafting the second book.