In the past, he’s worked everywhere from a Hedge Fund to the Army Infantry. While in the military, he deployed to Iraq and Egypt. He provided security for the 56th Presidential Inauguration, and was in the military’s 2011-2015 Defining Moments radio and TV advertising campaign.
When he’s not traveling, he and his wife are based near Washington, D.C. He’s currently working on his next book, and a near-term science fiction trilogy.
What inspires you to write?
It might be a bit morbid, but the evil things in the world inspire me to write.
There are too many to list here, but some of these evils include injustices, cruelty, hurting people/people hurting others, war, abuse…
Viewing everything as “wrong” is, of course, the first step. If I stopped there and just noticed all these things, I wouldn’t be inspired. To transform all these things into inspiration, I have to craft stories of heroes who overpower them.
When I hear from a reader that something has inspired them to win a small (or sometimes large) battle in their lives, it’s one of the greatest gifts in the world.
So, I gain inspiration by first searching, identifying and examining the evil in this world. Then, I’ll craft myths and stories for readers who will inevitably encounter this evil. It’s my hope that these stories will be a type of technology that readers can use, or recall, to give themselves the power to overcome evil.
This is the type of virtuous loop or flywheel that continually inspires me to write. When I get feedback from readers, it’s the icing on the cake, and I scurry back to my drafts to create even better stories for my readers.
Tell us about your writing process.
My daily routine provides the best view into my writing process:
I wake up around 6:00 am.
I do the Five Tibetans.
I drink a big glass of lemon water, with a straw- got to watch that enamel 🙂
I’ll start reading (usually non-fiction) in the morning. I’ll save fiction for the evening.
Make breakfast and coffee for myself and my wife.
Start writing by 8:45 am. I’ll do the most creative stuff first. I sketch out and outline by hand, and then put the outline in Scrivener and start writing.
I’ll stop sometime around 1:00 pm to eat lunch, take a walk and listen to a podcast or audio book.
Edit everything I’ve written for the day.
Post or share something on Medium and Twitter.
Check email, do business stuff, more business stuff.
Work out, dinner, hang out with my wife, and then read fiction and fall asleep!
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Yes, but not in public 😉
Joseph Campbell said that any creative risks, “playing the idiot before the jury of sober eyes.” So I’m continually careful to keep that dialogue sacred, solely between me and the characters.
If someone I love and trust wants to chat about something I wrote, or certain characters, I’ll sometimes do that. But I don’t take feedback on the characters haphazardly.
What advice would you give other writers?
Generally, be careful about taking advice. Don’t be afraid to seek it out, but be careful you’re only seeking out what you want to hear, and from the right people.
Some of the best advice I’ve ever received made me mad the first time I heard it. It made me uncomfortable; it made me feel horrible! But, it turns out that the negative advice and feedback I got helped open my eyes. In some cases, it made me want to prove people wrong. There is power in aspiring to prove people wrong. Don’t be afraid to explore that power, and build your ambition.
But also, read and write… a ton!
How did you decide how to publish your books?
When I first started writing, I explored going with a traditional publisher.
After awhile, I discovered it was taking up all my time. I wasn’t reading as much, and I wasn’t writing as much.
So instead, I stopped caring about going traditional and focused on reading, writing, and self-publishing. The reality is, the best agents and publishing houses are scouring the best seller lists on Amazon and every other retailer. There might be a glut of books, but there is an extreme shortage of great books.
The internet has created these amazing platforms where authors can signal their competency as they go. I decided I needed to focus on the craft, so I self-published, and that’s already brought me into contact with amazing editors and agents. When the time is right, or the offer is right, I’m now in a better negotiating position.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think we’re going to see a massive return to reading. The ebook market is poised to keep growing for many years to come. But the most exciting thing that I don’t hear anyone talking about is that books are the best way to learn.
As studies continue to emerge about the deleterious effects of internet-only or advertising-based content on the internet, there will be a flock to reading. It’s my belief that studies will start to emerge that show reading books is the safest way to become smarter. I think that newer methods or, “gamified” interactions with content will provoke many unintended consequences.
The future of book publishing is dark for those who refuse to adapt. But for those who chose to learn, evolve, and grow with it, it’s blindingly bright.
What genres do you write?: Young Adult, Fiction, Non Fiction, Business, Self-Help, Military, Family
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print, Audiobook
Link To Chad Grills Page On Amazon
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.