Max West (born January 4, 1980) was born in New York City and spent much of his youth reading all kinds of literature as well as newspaper comic strips, superhero comics, and European comics. He trained at the School of Visual Arts and in 2009, developed the setting and characters for Sunnyville Stories. He presently resides in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he works as a self-employed freelancer.
What inspires you to write?
I do the work I do to be in control. The world is constantly changing and seeks to impose its will on me. By listening to my own self and my instincts, I regain my control. My intuition helps me express myself and make sense of a chaotic world.
I draw upon my subconscious and trust my intuition. If instinct tells me I’m doing good, I keep at it. If instinct feels wrong, I stop and try to make order out of chaos. I summon my feelings, my imagination, my experiences, and my heart. I trust my own judgement.
In what I create, I want to make what I want rather than listen to what others want. My own desires for acceptance and for times long gone are reflected in my work.
Tell us about your writing process.
I search everywhere for inspiration – my own experiences, TV, movies, video games, vintage advertising, and so on. That helps to spark an idea which leads me to write a story treatment for my work. That’s usually one to four handwritten pages giving the basic plot of the story, the conflict, and how it’s resolved. From there, I work up the script via computer and the artwork by hand (my work is comics and graphic novels).
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I determine what each character wants when I create them. I give them “heart” by having them want something (acceptance, taking care of others, to be powerful, etc) and write the story based on how those desires affect them and their interactions with the world.
What advice would you give other writers?
Keep trying, practice as much as you can, learn all that is possible, and write plenty.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I decided to go the self-publishing route by setting up Different Mousetrap Press LLC. I want full creative control and do not want others telling me what to do.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
The small press shows much potential thanks to newer technologies and an increase in small, independent-friendly businesses and distribution networks.
What do you use?
What genres do you write?
Comics and Graphic Novels, Fiction, Gothic Horror
What formats are your books in?
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