Of course I’m a writer, but you probably want to know about my lurid past, which includes the excitement of substitute teaching, accounting, and working in a plutonium plant. That last was interesting but in all honesty the company no longer made nuclear products, just cleaned up afterward. Throughout my many jobs, I continued to enjoy reading, math, music and swimming. Since I’ve added writing and retirement, there is time for more fun with a creative outlet.
What inspires you to write?
Research and learning about where things are, how they work, and who is involved motivates me to write. I’m an avid Google user and sometimes can’t take notes fast enough when a subject interests me. It’s like the old days when you find multiple references at the library only without having to find the books yourself.
Einstein said “I don’t know one millionth of what there is to know”. Imagine how much I still have to learn then. Mostly, I like to imagine situations that are unusual for ordinary, solid people rather than create a fantasy world. I do admire sci-fi and fantasy authors, but fiction that is plausible with action, intrigue, and believable characters is more my strength.
Tell us about your writing process.
This is a tricky question because the mechanics of my writing vary. I sometimes imagine characters, give them names and let questions about what could happen and what they say or do guide the plot. Other times I have a set plot in mind aand the characters become necessary based on that. Either way I don’t outline, but sometimes write out scenes in longhand to think faster than I type.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Adding to the speculation that I must be crazy to write, I admit to letting my characters talk to me in my head as I write. It’s my favorite way to get dialogue down right. The glorious thing is, though, I can override them if they start swearing or something.
What advice would you give other writers?
Reading is the key to better writing. If you write fantasy, read good fantasy books. If you’ve done that a lot, then you can read less polished fantasy books or even critique them on Scribophile, TheNextBigWriter, or other writing group sites. You then have an ideal as your goal with what to avoid to guide you there. For mystery writing as I do, of course set your ending so you can drop clues and red herrings along the way. But also let yourself be surprised by where even the minor characters take you in the plot.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
* Availability of free ISBN
* How easy was formatting, uploading, and editing
* Distribution of book after publishing
* Reputation of publisher
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Traditional publishing has taken some knocks with the J K Rowling scandal, but I believe it will continue to be a major force. Self-publishing’s growth has been rapid, but will eventually level off some as more authors want the marketing, distribution, and services help that agents can offer. The most common complaint on social media by authors is that they are not marketers (but have to be) and it takes time away from writing.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
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