About J.A. Santana:
I’m an IT professional by day and author by night; I’m also a dad to a teenager soon to be an adult; I enjoy a variety of activities, from an active fitness lifestyle to water rafting in the summer and binge watching movies/shows or playing video games in winter. Road trips are something I enjoy. I read across different genres—poetry, supernatural/horror, fantasy, and science fiction—and disciplines like philosophy, mythology, and psychology, which have informed my philosophy and writing as a whole.
What inspires you to write?
I dreamed for a long time to write and had come up with story ideas throughout but I thought it was nothing more than fancy thoughts I could make a lifestyle of and over the years I wrote poetry and short stories I kept to myself/ Until, one day I decided to publish The Cool and Warmth of Hearts, which is a poetry collection of romantic poems where many of the poems in it go as far back as high school and spent most of their time archived on DVD discs until in 2019 I revisited all of my written work and pursued the path to be a self-published author. This poetry collection contains an overarching theme with sub-themes about love and romanticism where the inspiration varied from personal experience, second-hand observations of family, friends, and more; also philosophy in my dealings with the concept and anecdotes of those experiences. In addition, I received further inspiration by the works of classical poets from Shakespeare era to Lord Byron and Emily Dickinson that helped further inspire this collection with form, meter, sensibility, and imagination.
What authors do you read when you aren’t writing?
William Shakespeare, Lord Byron, Edgard Allan Poe, Robert Frost, J.R.R. Tolkien, H.P. Lovecraft, George Orwell and discovering more!
Tell us about your writing process.
I haven’t really thought about this, but I have a writing routine outline in steps and I don’t always adhere to every step, but it guides my focus and revisit when there is an area I feel lost or stuck in. Sometimes I’ll listen to classical music while writing or in between every writing session I would get up and walk around until I identify the chosen words to write and I have instances where I have writing bursts—sometimes I write in the early morning before work or sometimes after work or spend most of it on the weekend because of my weekday job. Lately, I have separate writing days from reading, research, and marketing which has been helpful on which activity to prepare for the day.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Sometimes I take on the role of the character and sometimes I'm the omnipotent figure seeing their every feelings, thoughts, expressions and sometimes I take on the 3rd person limited role. It depends on the point of view I like to take on the story and that will dictate how the story plays out. In my poetry collection I took on different point of views because the poems are standalone pieces operating under a shared theme.
What advice would you give other writers?
If you aspire to be an author, see it through no matter what—I always wanted to publish a book for many years and I doubted my ability to do so until I found the courage to put pen to paper or in my case finger to keyboard. I recommend reading on the craft of writing and also publishing and marketing too. Develop a ritual to help reinforce good writing habits and stick to a schedule with a deadline. It helps to let people who are supportive hold you accountable; join a community of like-minded writers if it helps you stay accountable. Writing is a lonely endeavor, and it’s important to remember why you write and why you want to publish a book—of course you will do it for yourself; however, if you plan to do it for the long run, remember the value you provide to the world with your written words those who wants to read your book and find joy and insight that brings them value will motivate you every time you have doubts about writing your book.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I was in the middle of a new career search based on my strengths and trying out different passion projects; previously, I tried web design and branding but the honeymoon phase didn't last long; until, I saw a pattern between journaling, in my day job, the years of written work I stashed away that I should try writing and it was in that moment, I decided to write and recently published my first book, The Cool and Warmth of Hearts.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Although, books has taken a back seat to visual mediums and audiobooks in recent times; I still believe writing is a creative endeavor I don't get expect to be replaced by A.I. but something you can complement or supplement into the writing process. Authors' will have to adapt to the meta in their genre, opportunities with A.I., identify the difference between short time trends vs. long-term value not just for you but also for readers. If you're an author operating as an self-publisher as well, follow news outlet, podcast, communities like ALLi, and the like to stay on top of the industry.
What genres do you write?: Poetry, Supernatural/Horror, Fantasy, Science Fiction
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
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.