Please introduce yourself and your book(s)!
I am an indie author who has had a really good experience since launching at the end of January of this year 2019. I have five novels, The Earthlings and Iolon Star that are both science fiction novels, Return to Limerick, a fairy tale novel and The Rabbit Hole Writings, a short story collection that over 3000 internet readers picked as the best of a short story collection I had online and free to read for a while. I used to have a normal job but never a normal life and becoming a full time writer has been a gigantic experience that I feel should have been my whole life. So I will continue to write to the bitter or not end.
What is/are the real-life story(ies) behind your book(s)?
When I write I just sit down and write, so I have no plan outside of genre. Because of that, after I finish a story I’ve been surprised to find my life within each of them. I spent a large part of my life doing advocate work against discrimination and for liberty and freedom. That remains a part of my life but it’s only a tiny fraction of my time now. I also was a victim of a significant crime that I am lucky to be alive and that plays in, but more so in my short stories.
What inspires/inspired your creativity?
It’s definitely all the fairy tales and science fiction novels and movies I have enjoyed over the years. I am one of those people that spent a large part of my time in bookstores and libraries from an early age. If you take me into a bookstore expect to spend hours there, it’s how I roll.
How do you deal with creative block?
Generally I just take a break because it never lasts on a story and if it does I generally dump the project into the land of maybe some other time or never folder.
What are the biggest mistakes you can make in a book?
Writing a story that doesn’t keep the reader reading. I have been grateful for Kindle Unlimited because you can see how that part is going and been happy to see that readers aren’t putting my novels down but reading them through to the end in just a couple of days.
Do you have tips on choosing titles and covers?
I try to pick covers that not only speaks to the genre but gives a clue to the story. I don’t follow the top 100 cover styles theory because I already tried that once and my sales fell off wildly, so I went back to my own choice on design.
How do bad reviews and negative feedback affect you and how do you deal with them?
I only have a few reviews on my novels so far and all of them are thankfully positive. But being involved in a lot of writer forums I know when and if it happens I will ignore it as a natural consequence of being a writer. Many of the masters have bad reviews so I expect it will happen at some point. When I was really new to all of this, I had a science fiction short story published by a literary magazine called Soft Cartel that had a wildly positive response from Reddit and then the barrage of negative comments began. I didn’t understand it at this point so I unfortunately engaged; a mistake I won’t be repeating.
How has your creation process improved over time?
I don’t worry about the little things writing, I just keep writing because I know there is no such thing as not editing a book.
What were the best, worst and most surprising things you encountered during the entire process of completing your book(s)?
I am always having fun when I am writing because I am inside that story while I am writing it. I am a very visual thinker so as I write I see the movie in my mind.
Do you tend towards personal satisfaction or aim to serve your readers? Do you balance the two and how?
Other than the genre I don’t know what the story will be until I am writing it, but of course I want the fans of that genre to fully enjoy it. Being a fan myself of the genres I write in I always try to satisfy us all and always hope I do.
What role do emotions play in creativity?
Emotions I think are at the core of every story and almost all action is driven by it.
Do you have any creativity tricks?
I can’t think of any outside of occasional partying.
What are your plans for future books?
I am at the fifth chapter of my next science fiction novel but I might be turning that into a script. I was rolling around the internet and a free script contest ad came up and I clicked it. That sent me into writing scripts for a bit and I have written two so far and even submitted a reality show idea. I’ve been having fun writing scripts but I love writing novels so I think I will finish the novel then write the script after that.
Tell us some quirky facts about yourself
I’m a pretty good poker player and I’ve even won seats into very large tournaments for large sums of money, but then I choke from nervousness. I am working on that problem still.