Eric Nierstedt grew up in Garwood NJ, and spent most of his life absorbing the epic tales of fantasy from Terry Brooks, Stephen King, and even the tales of comic books and video games. His writing began soon after and when he graduated from Kean University. In 2011, his work was selected for the Unlimited Potential Theatre’s NJ Wordsmith Competition. He wrote professionally for the Westfield Leader newspaper, and the online magazine Suite101. But Eric wanted to tell a story of a group of characters, anchored by one central narrator, that battled forces of destruction. And he also wanted to use his own thoughts on the nature of good and evil- how the two are defined by each other, and are meaningless alone.
"When I started the Lightrider Journals, the big fantasy novels of the day were Twilight and Harry Potter. I wanted to avoid being another copy of those at all costs. So I combined all my major influences- Terry Brooks, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and Stephen King's The Dark Tower. As I wrote, I wanted to explore a concept that wasn't discussed much in any popular fantasy- the idea of showing good and evil as forces both responsible for and essential to life as we know it. I also wanted to show a more natural form of magic, and show fantasy existing in the real world, which would turn out much bigger then people think. And finally, I wanted to tell a story about what I was feeling stepping out in the world for the first time- how a man can adapt to a sudden and tremendous responsibility- not just his successes, but his losses as well, and how he learns to live with them. And of course, throw in liberal amounts of magic, characters that would resonate with people, and a sprinkling of humor. I think anyone who reads it will be able to have a good time with all the characters and action, but also see a different version of the neverending battle of good and evil. And most of all, I hope they leave the book with a better idea of how they can face that which seems insurmountable."
Eric is currently working on more Lightrider books and writing on the official Lightrider blog (http://lightriderjournals.wordpress.com/), where he analyzes writing as a craft and in popular media.