About Matthew W. Grant:
Matthew W. Grant is the author of several screenplays and novels in various genres including the Slaters Falls series and the Northbridge series.
Publishers Weekly declared Matthew’s novel, Secrets Of Slaters Falls, “Tragicomic deliciousness!” noting that the “Bawdy, snappy humor catches spark right away.” PW also noted the novel’s balance between “Class-conscious dirty realism and the prurience of nighttime soap operas.”
Secrets Of Slaters Falls achieved semifinalist status in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest. Matthew’s screenplay adaptation of his novel, Zach’s Secret, was a finalist in a contest sponsored by Script Magazine.
Matthew graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Education and Mass Communications earned after his thesis, Sex On Soap Operas, raised eyebrows and pulse rates on campus. His material has appeared on numerous websites and in two newspapers.
Like most writers, prior to writing full time, Matthew paid his dues in diverse corporate positions. He worked as a producer at an AM talk radio station where he interacted with local media celebrities and politicians.
His career progressed to Corporate Training and Corporate Purchasing. He worked for many years at an international Boston based bank in which his media skills were utilized in many ways including creating training manuals, writing/producing/directing/performing in corporate videos, and writing corporate-wide communications.
Later, as an Independent Purchasing Consultant, Matthew consulted for a company that was named to the Inc. 500 list of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies twice during his time working with them.
As a resident of New England and a fan of its spectacular fall foliage, Matthew sets many of his works in small New England towns. While they may look picture-perfect on the surface, you can be sure they are teeming with secrets underneath.
What inspires you to write?
I’m inspired by other books, movies and television shows that are moving or entertaining (and preferably both). If I see another writer who has produced work that resonates with me, it makes me want to produce work that will resonate with someone else.
Tell us about your writing process.
I have never used outlines per se. I will, however, write down ideas for scenes or snippets of dialogue that I can use later on in a story.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I actually play the scenes over and over in my head. I imagine the characters talking to each other. This is especially helpful when something about a scene doesn’t feel quite right initially. After imagining it several times, the best version of it presents itself.
What advice would you give other writers?
Put the best version of your work out there and then move on to the next project. Most writers have many stories they want to tell, but get bogged down spending so much time either revamping old material or trying to figure out how to promote it that they deprive themselves of the fun of writing new material.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
Like practically all writers up until a few short years ago, I spent way too much time and energy pursuing agents and traditional publishing contracts. I had a few ultimately disappointing “near misses” including being promised a publishing contract directly from an editor and then never receiving it, despite the fact that we had already negotiated the advance. It turned out that the publishing house dropped that line of books before my contract was issued.
I entered one of my novels, Secrets Of Slaters Falls, into the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest. It ended up coming in as a semi-finalist. Part of the prize that year for reaching that level included a manuscript review by Publishers Weekly. It was amazing to be lucky enough to get a quotable review from Publishers Weekly before the novel was even published.
I thought that would really get an agent’s attention. I promptly found out that all of the agents I contacted had absolutely no idea of the contest’s existence. The fact that I already had a PW review on an unpublished manuscript not under contract completely confused them. (This may be different these days now that the contest has been around for several years and Amazon has become such a force in publishing in its own right.)
That’s when I realized that so many agents weren’t keeping up with the changes already happening to the industry. I couldn’t believe they didn’t know about a publishing contest being co-sponsored by Amazon and a major division of a Big 6 publishing company. (This was before consolidations reduced the industry Big 6 to Big 5.)
Shortly after that experience, I decided to research independent and entrepreneurial ways to publish books.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Never in the history of book publishing have so many people been able to make a living with their writing. I don’t see that changing any time soon. However, that statement shouldn’t be taken to mean that it is still not extremely competitive in the marketplace for authors to be discovered by new readers.
What do you use?: Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: fiction, horror, thrillers, drama, romance, nonfiction
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print