Smashwords Interview

This interview was conducted by Smashwords, through which I’m publishing books to various vendors. It’s actually an automated interview but hey, it’s an interview.

When did you first start writing?
In my teens, when I first started creating Llurien, the setting I’ve been building for 30 years now. I was more into world building than writing originally, partly because I really disliked my writing.
What is your writing process?
I plan just about everything and like to know how a story ends (and why) before writing, partly so I can foreshadow events or add irony. I tend to write dialogue into my outlines so I know the core of every scene. This also helps me know my characters. After writing, I let a story sit so I see it with fresh eyes later. Then it gets edited by me before beta-readers give it the once over, I make changes, and then it’s off to my editor. I make changes based on that and finally order a print proof copy, where I do the final proofreading and make final changes. Then it’s done!
How do you approach cover design?
When I hire someone I give them a basic idea of what I want and send examples of covers I like. Otherwise I go onto image websites and find a suitable cover for a book, then do mockups in Photoshop to decide if I can make that image work. Then I buy the needed license, replace the image, and finalize the cover.
What’s the story behind your latest book?
I created a supernatural area of Llurien called Everland and needed an adventure story for Talon Stormbringer, my action hero for a series of novellas. I used this setting for THE EVER FIEND. Talon is forced into Everland and experiences many of the horrors therein.
Describe your desk
It’s my lap, usually covered in short pants in summer and long pants in winter. I write on a laptop. Sometimes my son falls asleep with his head there while I’m still writing, so you can consider his head part of me desk 😉
What motivated you to become an indie author?
It takes time and effort to attract traditional publishers and I decided my energy was better spent on managing my career myself, It allows me to write and publish works of every length and to do so when I see fit.
What are you working on next?
Finishing The Art of World Building.
When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
Mostly hanging out with my kids and sometimes golfing.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
No, thankfully. It was probably pretty bad.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Kindle, mostly because I’m all about Amazon.