About Patricia Smith:
I am absolutely nuts about astronomy and writing apocalyptic thrillers. You can’t shut me up about either.
I have enjoyed writing stories all of my life and my first novel Time Split, was published in 2011. This was soon followed by my Distant Suns stories and more recently Islands – The Epidemic.
I started my career in computing, but presently work to help people improve their numeracy and English skills. The rest of my time is worked around my writing.
I live in Northumberland, England, with my husband.
My choice of genre stems from my love of apocalyptic thrillers and the ‘What if?’ scenario.
I strive in my writing to give the reader a roller-coaster ride of emotions and excitement, mixed in with a good dash of fear – all from the safety of their armchair.
What inspires you to write?
My love of astronomy, science and ‘What If’ scenarios inspire me to write.
Tell us about your writing process.
I work part time (three days a week) helping people to improve their English and maths, the rest of the week is spent writing. I usually know where a story is going before I write it, although some of my last novel, Distant Suns – The Silexous, was a mystery to me when I was writing it. For the first half of the book I did not know what was going to happen in the next chapter.
I usually do an outline of the story in Word and then do a chapter by chapter break down as I start to write.
For Distant Suns I wrote a timeline of events as the story was very dependent on time. I had to decide in the story when Jupiter would ignite, when it would become visible in the day time sky, when it would begin to alter weather patterns etc..
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I can see my characters. At the beginning of a chapter I can see what they are doing, I can feel their feelings. When I wrote the prologue for Islands – The Epidemic, I could see two men in lab coats looking at a crack in the ceiling.
Some of my main characters are based on people I know, but most of them don’t know I do that. My husband is Jason in Time Split and my father is Edward, in Distant Suns.
What advice would you give other writers?
Don’t give up. Be professional. Get your work proof read.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had enough rejection letters to paper a wall and even though most of them were very positive I was really despairing about ever getting published. Finally, in 2011, a friend persuaded me to self publish. I published Time Split in June and followed this up with Distant Suns in December. Since then I have released a book a year and have a fan base where my followers are wanting to know when my next book is coming out (a long way from the dark days of the rejection letters). Don’t give up and don’t be frightened to do it yourself!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think more and more people are reading books, which is a wonderful thing. I also think, although people are still into paperbacks, we do live in a technological world, where people want to be able to read ebooks on the go. I think that ebooks will become more and more popular in the future as they are cheaper and convenient way to read books ( an extremely good thing for readers in Australia where it is very expensive to buy books).
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?: Science Fiction and Apocalyptic Thrillers.
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
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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.
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