L.J. Simpson was born in Wolverhampton, England in 1956. He worked primarily in the steel industry until 1990 when he embarked on a fairly radical change of direction, moving to Japan where he opened a small English language school. Married with two grown up children, work still takes up a great deal of his time. The remainder he divides up between taking long walks by the sea with his ever faithful border collie, building model tall ships and writing.
What inspires you to write?
I can’t remember a time when I never enjoyed writing. As a student my favourite assignments were always writing essays, whether it be in the English classroom, history, geography or whatever.
When I moved from my native England to Japan some twenty five years ago I became an avid letter writer. My, was the telephone expensive in those days.
I started writing fiction about four years ago – just as a hobby. Straight away I found that it gave me a buzz. It’s such a lot of fun to create characters and think about how the next scene will play out. For some reason I also enjoy playing around with sentences, changing the grammar, always searching for a better rhythm.
I don’t expect for a minute that I will ever make my fortune or become well known, but that really doesn’t matter. I write because it’s fun.
Tell us about your writing process.
I have a very general outline of how the story will pan out but as for the rest, the story seems to evolve with a life of it’s own.
I probably spend three times as much time thinking than writing. This is usually done during the long walks I take with my beautiful border collie through the woods and down by the sea. Once home I jot a few things down in a notebook and take it from there.
Once I start writing I find that one sentence leads to another, which in turn gives me another idea and I think, “What if this happens, or what if that happens…?” Then I take the dog out and begin the cycle all over again.
Healthy for the body, healthy for the mind. The dog’s happy too.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
All the time. I imagine I’m on an acting set and we try a few lines. Director keeps saying ‘CUT!’
What advice would you give other writers?
I’m not sure how much advice I can give to other writers as most of them probably have more experience than me. For someone who is just starting out I would say that I spent three and a half years writing my first book which at 253 pages isn’t even particularly long. I wrote at my own speed, didn’t set deadlines and always did my best to write as well as I possibly could.
Just stick at it and don’t give up.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I chose to self publish with Amazon KDP Select. The reasons being that it allows you to run promotions and also opens up your book to members of Kindle Unlimited who can borrow your book for a page by page reading fee.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Wish I knew. I still believe that a physical book is a thing of beauty and that every house should have a bookcase stocked with real books. However, I doubt if the march of the e book will be anything but relentless.
What genres do you write?: Sci fi, sci-fi adventure
What formats are your books in?: eBook
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