I was recently asked by my publisher Fountain Blue Publishing to complete a brief Q&A session. Here’s the result. Visit Fountain Blue’s website here.
What inspired you to write your book?
I have always loved reading and I suppose my writing was inspired by that. The Seer of Albion started as a short story, no more than a thousand words in length, but I was inspired by entering the National Novel and Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) to transform it into a complete novel.
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
I have several, all of them very different. J.R.R Tolkien for the wonderful world and characters that he created. Thomas Hardy for the powerful descriptive prose that he used and Jack Kerouac for the wonderful grittiness of his books.
What is your favorite theme/genre to write?
I try not to get stuck in one genre although I do try to make my stories very character based. I do use science fiction and magic in some of my stories although only in small doses. I suppose most of my stories could also be described as love stories to some extent.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I like to surprise readers. I enjoy exploring the dark side of life also.
What books have most influenced your life?
Books by my mentors mentioned above. The Lord of the Rings by Tolkien, Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy and On the Road by Jack Kerouac. Also Isaac Asimov’s’ Foundation series.
What are your thoughts on writing a book series?
Great idea. I am presently doing that with the Seer of Albion which I hope will become a trilogy. No more than that though. You CAN have too much of a good thing.
Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
There are two main characters in my latest novel. Gerros who is one of them has the ability to almost melt into the background. Not invisibility as such but more stealth. Very handy for passing enemies by.
How long on average does it take you to write a book?
How long is a piece of string? My first novel took 4 months. My recent novel? About 2 years but that was with lots of breaks.
Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
I never really suffer that badly from this but if I do find myself a little stuck I will move on to another part of the story. I often write the ending before the middle of my novels. Also if my storyline seems to be stuck I will try changing the storyline totally. My first novel had three (at least) totally different endings before it was complete. My latest novel had at least two different endings.
Do you have any advice for other authors on how to market their books?
I am afraid not. Finding an agent or publisher would be best. I have found social networking sites to be of limited use. Authoring a blog as I do at stanmrogers.com would probably be better.
What are your thoughts on good/bad reviews?
Any reviews are better than no reviews. Bask in the good reviews. Learn from the bad ones.
My latest novel THE SEER OF ALBION is available from my publisher Fountain Blue here.Or it can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble etc.