About S J House:
Simon was born in London. Despite being dyslexic, he has always been highly creative with a strong and vivid imagination. With a background in never-before-seen product design (including his FreeForma surf skate bike invention), Simon lives in Sydney, Australia, where his passions are surfing and writing. Indeed, his first series, Andee The Aquanaut, developed from a character he created while in the water! The series won an independent author award.
Simon constantly seeks new and creative forms of expression. He loves to write at a fast pace with never a dull moment and has discovered that writing for kids gives him the thrill he seeks.
With his enthusiasm for make believe, and creating new ideas for characters and superheroes, he feels the sky’s the limit; there’s so much one can tune into. This excitement motivates him to create inspiring works that are original and innovative, sparking the reader’s imagination, taking them on journeys into amazing worlds.
Simon’s second series, titled Menosaurus, has the same amount of action, an equally adventurous hero, and shocking villains, this series takes place both on Earth and in the depths of space. A race of super-intelligent dinosaur humanoids plot to reclaim Earth, which they believe to be rightfully theirs. The incredible illustrations are created by renowned, award-winning illustrator, Zoran Zlaticanin.
Most recently, Simon has completed Grey Squirrels London, a humorous and fast-paced animal adventure for junior readers. Following the hair-raising and hysterical adventures of six squirrels, on a quest across London, England, this novel encourages readers to consider the oneness of all living beings.
Simon supports various conservation orgs that are marine and rhino-related, through the sales of his books. With Simon, it seems that anything that’s way out there is actually deep within.
What inspires you to write?
I'm inspired to write by my story ideas. I simply cannot wait to draft a new story onto paper when I get a burning idea in my head about new characters and their worlds. There is the thrill and excitement to see where the story takes me, and also the buzz of a total stranger reading my work and enjoying it the same way as I did. It’s a bit like where we all like the same song and know the words to sing along, you can get the same thrill from writing stories if people like your voice and want to read more of your work. That's really inspiring to me.
What authors do you read when you aren’t writing?
My favourite authors are Roald Dahl, Emily Rhoda and James Patterson. Also Rick Yancey.
Tell us about your writing process.
I am a total pantser and do not plan or plot. I just sit down and write and see where the story takes me. But I always have a Moleskine notebook to hand where I am constantly jotting down new ideas, and these little books fill up fast! I have tons of them stacked up in the cupboard. I love to write myself into corners because that’s when the best ideas come, when you really have to think hard about a new dynamic idea to get the story back on track. There's always a better idea, a more dynamic scene that you can think of, and that's what makes for a good story in the end. I always write in the afternoons when I've freed my mind of emails and clutter, so there's nothing else to think about except the story. I never edit until I have the entire book drafted out. Then I go back and really start to work on the story, putting the flesh onto the bare bones until it finally becomes a book after many rewrites!
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Absolutely. I hear my characters' voices in my head. If you cannot hear your characters' voices, then it would be really tough to write them, and be impossible to tell who was talking in the story. So it’s a total must to have each character's unique voice in your head. And yes, you do hear them talking to you and giving you ideas of what they are going to say and how they are going to act. I hear a character's voice clearly in my head as if I have actually spoken to them in real life.
What advice would you give other writers?
My advice would be to keep writing and never to give up, keep on producing those story ideas and don’t ask the opinions of family and friends. Believe in yourself, find your own dynamic and be confident enough to keep working at it until you’ve carved your own niche.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I simply decided to self-publish my books because I am far too impatient to wait around for months on end to hear back from a traditional publisher. This amount of waiting puts my work into paralysis and holds me back in getting my story ideas out there and read. Plus, I can make more money to support my writing by being self-published. I was also influenced by listening to endless podcasts about the publishing and self-publishing industries, and this informed me enough to make up my own mind about which route I wanted to take.
For new authors, my advice would be to read articles and listen to podcasts about traditional publishing or self-publishing, such as Mark Dawson’s self-publishing formula, or the Alliance of Independent Authors. Then make your own informed decision.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I certainly think that self-publishing is becoming the norm nowadays, and growing year on year, especially now with the way the world is, with more and more people staying home and working from home. Bookshops will become more obsolete, sadly. There’s nothing like the smell of walking into a bookshop! But it's just the way things are going, and more and more bookshops will close, thus putting more publishing companies out of business but creating more opportunity on the self-publishing side.
What genres do you write?: Children's middle grade action adventure Sci-fy fantasy
What formats are your books in?: eBook, Print, Both eBook and Print, Audiobook
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.