January 8, 1944 |
Sterling, Illinois, U.S.
|Occupation||author, former attorney|
|Genres||epic fantasy, urban fantasy|
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 23 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.
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' thorough familiarity with and love for the city of Seattle are clearly expressed in "A Knight of the Word" whose plot is set in that city.
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, was recently completed. The first installment, entitled Bearers of the Black Staff, was released in August 2010. The second installment, The Measure of the Magic, was released in August 2011.
Novels versus short stories 
I find it much harder to write short stories than long fiction. I feel cramped by the lack of space and the dictates of the form. There is considerable difference in long and short fiction disciplines, and I am not good with the latter. I hope not to have to do many more of them, but you never know. I must have written Indomitable anywhere from four to five times, each effort different. Give me a five hundred page sprawl as an assignment any day.
Love is everywhere and though it seems that it is easy to find, building blocks for it are found very rarely
Wise men are the ones experienced with knowledge.
- Note: The list below represents Terry Brooks' suggested reading order for new readers.  View the Shannara page for chronological order, but heed this note from the Terry Brooks site: "It is important to make a note right now for new readers. If as a new reader you read the novels in chronological order, you will be significantly spoiling your foray through Terry's work."
The Heritage of Shannara tetralogy 
- The Scions of Shannara (1990)
- The Druid of Shannara (1991)
- The Elf Queen of Shannara (1992)
- The Talismans of Shannara (1993)
Prequel to the Original Shannara Trilogy 
- First King of Shannara (1996)
Word & Void series 
The Voyage of the Jerle Shannara trilogy 
Genesis of Shannara trilogy 
- Armageddon's Children (August, 2006)
- The Elves of Cintra (August 28, 2007)
- The Gypsy Morph (August 26, 2008)
High Druid of Shannara trilogy 
Legends of Shannara duology 
The Dark Legacy of Shannara trilogy 
Paladins of Shannara 
- Allanon's Quest (July 2012) (eBook short story, prequel to The Sword of Shannara) 
- The Weapons Master's Choice (January 2013) (eBook short story)
- The Black Irix (June 3, 2013) (eBook short story)
- The Guide to Shannara (1986)
- Shannara computer game (1995) by Lori Ann Cole and Corey Cole
- The World of Shannara (2001) (companion book) with Teresa Patterson (Revised edition Fall 2009)
- Indomitable (2003) (short story published in anthology Legends II)
- Dark Wraith of Shannara (2008) (graphic novel) 
- Walker and the Shade of Allanon (Spring 2013) (short story published in Unfettered: New Tales by Masters of Fantasy)
- Imaginary Friends (1991) (Word/Void short story published in anthology Once Upon a Time: A Treasury of Modern Fairy Tales)
Magic Kingdom of Landover series 
- Note: This is not part of the Shannara series.
- Magic Kingdom for Sale — SOLD! (1986)
- The Black Unicorn (1987)
- Wizard at Large (1988)
- The Tangle Box (1994)
- Witches' Brew (1995)
- A Princess of Landover (August 18, 2009)
- Why I Write About Elves (2005) (short story published as an Amazon short)
- The Writers Complete Fantasy Reference: An Indispensable Compendium of Myth and Magic (Writer's Digest Books, 2000), with Michael J. Varhola
- Sometimes the Magic Works: Lessons from a Writing Life (2003)
- Hook (film) novelization of the film. Ballantine Books. (17 December 1991) ISBN 0-449-90707-4.
- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace novelization of the film (1999)
- Speakman, Shawn (2008). "Terry Brooks' official website". Archived from the original on 2008-04-23. Retrieved 2008-05-19.
- JiveMagazine Interview with Terry Brooks
- "Studio plans Shannara film series". BBC News. 2007-06-06. Retrieved 2008-09-07.
- Speakman, Shawn (2008). "Terry Brooks' official biography". Retrieved 2008-05-19.
- Brooks, Terry (1999-2008). "Ask Terry Q&A - Writing". Retrieved 2008-09-14.
- Speakman, Shawn (2008). "Terry's Suggested Reading Order". Retrieved 2011-09-06.
- "Terry Brooks' Website". Retrieved 2008-01-20.
- "Terry Brooks' Website". Retrieved 2012-9-11.
- "Terry Brooks' Website". Retrieved 2007-10-28.
- Terry Brooks Official Site
- Terry Brooks at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
- An audio interview with Terry Brooks (MP3 format) from Hour 25