About Cas E Crowe:
Hi. My name is Cas E Crowe and I am the author of The Wayward Haunt, the first novel in The Wayward Series. I like to write young adult, dark fantasy, and horror. Ever since I was a child, I have been intrigued by chilling, ominous stories. I honestly don’t know why. My favorite day is Halloween, closely followed by Christmas. I had a haunted doll house growing up as kid which my grandfather built for me because he knew how my imagination worked. I’d create my own monsters and ghosts, which meant Barbie always ended up in difficult and scary situations. I guess it was inevitable that I would write in this genre.
I’ve had many careers. I’ve worked as a sales assistant, a graphic artist, an office manager, and am currently a part-time operations administrator and part-time author. I am enjoying life immensely as I’ve finally found a balance between work and creativity. For me, there are never enough hours in the day to complete everything I wish to do. I love to write, draw and paint traditionally and in photoshop, read, travel, watch films, and catch up with friends and family. Creativity for me is my life. I’d get bored without it.
What inspires you to write?
There is something so appealing about dark fantasy and horror. I suppose I am similar to audiences out there who read and watch horror because they like to be unsettled and afraid, but know deep inside that they are safe. I write about subjects that frighten me, because it’s an opportunity for me to explore and understand that fear, and is something I can achieve in a safe environment.
I’m inspired by the fantasy genre because it takes me into another world where anything can be possible. Fantasy is always growing and evolving. Every author brings something new to the genre, which keeps the stories entertaining and interesting. You never know exactly what you are going to get when you read fantasy, or what you are going to get when you write in the genre, because rules are unbound by reality. The author’s imagination can be limitless.
When I’m planning a scene or a chapter, inspiration can strike at any moment. Music, films, novels, research and internet searches on myths and folklore, Netflix, something I see on the street. All of these have inspired my creativity in the past. I try to take a notebook with me everywhere I go now so I can jot down fresh ideas that spring up from the most unlikely of places. Even snippets of conversation I hear from my friends, something funny and unique that is spoken, can end up becoming dialogue in my novel.
What authors do you read when you aren’t writing?
I have so many favourite authors who have inspired me: Becca Fitzpatrick, Cassandra Clare, Kendare Blake, Claudia Gray, Lauren Kate, Sarah J. Mass, Melissa Marr, Derek Landy, Richelle Mead, James Dashner, Rachel Caine, Alexandra Adornetto. All these authors have novels for the young adult market in various sub-genres of science fiction and fantasy. I have enjoyed reading their novels. They have fantastic characters who drive the story, and as a reader, that’s what I want. If you don’t have a conflicted character with difficult choices to make, what’s the point? The story is uninteresting without this element.
Tell us about your writing process.
Everything in my stories, beginning, middle, end, scenes, chapters, characters, are plotted out and written down. I find that this helps me to keep focus and to meet deadlines. I know exactly where I’m going with the story. Sometimes, unexpected ideas jump in my head as I write. Strangely enough, they work for the scene or chapter that I’m writing. They are always nice surprises when they occur. So yes, my writing is strictly planned and outlined, but I do not object to new ideas coming along halfway through my stories. It keeps things interesting.
I work part time and write part time. I attempt to write all day Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday and treat it like a regular working day. I’m up at 8am. I have breakfast and then I write. I have lunch at 1pm for half an hour, and then I write till 5pm. After that I go for a run and come home and prep for dinner. Sometimes life intervenes. Sometimes I have to adjust my schedule for work or marketing, but for the most part it works for me, for now. I am not one of these people who can work full time and then come home and write till 2am in the morning. I tried it and fell asleep at the desk. I am realistic with what I can achieve now, and I know that writing in the evenings after work is just not something that I can do. Well, I can do it, but my writing is awful.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I’ve never quite understood what this means. Everything in my writing is structured, but sometimes when I write about a character, a new idea will pop into my head that will take my story a different direction and go to a place I did not expect. So yes. I’ve had the characters take over the story and start navigating the ship. I guess that’s listening to a character?
What advice would you give other writers?
Writing requires time and dedication. There are drafts and rewrites, suggestions from beta readers, followed by more rewrites, an editor taking a professional look at the work, and then finally your finished product that you have to get out there in the world and market. The challenging part is to keep the process fun and enjoyable, otherwise it will exhaust you. I recommend aspiring writers read as many books as they can in the genre they wish to write in and learn from those authors. Be realistic about what is achievable. Everyone has different commitments—family, work, relationships, etc. If you know writing for two hours a day will be impossible, don’t set yourself up to do this. Find times to write when you know you will actually be able to write. Maybe that’s two hours on a Saturday morning, or an hour on Friday night when the kids are training for soccer, etc. Everyone has busy schedules, so don’t be too hard on yourself. Writing your story should be fun. If you’re constantly failing to meet a ridiculous timeline you’ve set yourself, the writing process will be gruelling and frustrating. You’ll end up hating it. And finally, join a writing group. You will meet other fantastic writers and authors that you can share and collaborate ideas with. This is a great way to get your writing out there and get feedback. You will learn how to critique, edit, and improve your writing.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I decided to self-publish my novel so that I would have complete control over the process. I found an editor, designed the book’s front cover, created my own marketing strategies by doing lots of research, created my website, the book’s layout and typography, and the ebook in its mobi and epub formats. I won’t lie. Self-publishing has been hard work and on occasions downright stressful, but I’ve learned from past mistakes and have a better understanding about the process. It’s challenging, it’s exhausting, but it offers flexibility, creativity, and yes, it can be fun.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
It will be interesting to see where publishing ends up in the next five to ten years. Everything in the digital age is developing so fast, but I think both traditional and self-publishing methods are here to stay, along with print and digital publishing. To me, it seems the only way anyone can be traditionally published now is to be an already well-established author, a political figure, or a celebrity. The great thing about self-publishing is that it’s a process available to all writers, it’s just a matter of how determined you are to get your story out in the world.
What genres do you write?: Dark Fantasy and Horror.
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
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All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit to allow you the reader to hear the author in their own voice.
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