What inspires you to write?
Sometimes something someone says will spark off an idea, or something I see – ordinary things in daily life.
Tell us about your writing process.
I am pretty much seat of the pants when I can get away with it, and tend to do more outlining if I have got stuck, or if my project isn’t going well. I do form a lot in my mind though, before I start typing, so I will have a fair idea of what I am trying to do. I do a lot of research about anythng I write about, a lot. I cold call people and ask to interview them, I get tours of places, I spend a lot of time on this.
I don’t use “author software” or anything new fangled – no special equipment, no bells and whistles. Just MS Word. I did ask for a whiteboard for my birthday, so I could play with outlines and story ideas on it, but instead I received a machine to make those super-hard porcelain manicures, so I guess I’ll be sticking with my old-fashioned ways for a bit longer.
Once I have a rough draft I let it steep for a while and work on other things before revising. I revise again and again. You can’t revise too much in my opinion. I don’t have beta readers or any kind of story development committee like some writers, though. It’s basically a solitary process; I do get some assistance from Ferret though. Ferret sleeps in my in tray while I work, and that’s a big help. And I have an excellent cover design person.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Are you serious? They’re not real. To me that would be like giving one’s car a name.
What advice would you give other writers?
Keep at it. Don’t listen to other people too much. Don’t talk too much about what you are going to write or currently writing. Get on and do it. Set yourself regular working hours and make a little office area. Carve out the space and time you need from your existing life and make it non-negotiable. Log out of Facebook during your writing time.
Once you have finished your draft, don’t rush off and publish it. Get a good editor. Get a good cover design person. Don’t try to make your own cover unless that is the sort of work you normally do.
Never respond to reviews.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
Well, I hate interviews and I hate selling, so after getting a couple of rejections I decided to self-publish. I’ve been happy with that decision. My book doesn’t get promoted the way someone like Penguin would do, but on the other hand I’m not arsing about going to book signings and all sorts of silliness. If my work is good, it will eventually sell.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I really don’t; as long as I can do what I want, write my books and publish them, this isn’t something with which I concern myself.
What do you use?
Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?
Humour, fantasy, contemporary fiction, historical fiction, non-fiction
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print