Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Okay, a little about myself. I was born in Brisbane, Australia and raised in West London, England. I love action movies and martial arts and grew up watching Jackie Chan movies. Ironically, I never used to read much, I always preferred to watch the movie, but I love writing and because of that I have come to love reading too. After all, they go hand in hand. So far I have published three short stories, a novella and a Novel. Two of the short stories are in the horror genre and the rest of my books are fantasy.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest book is a fantasy novel called ‘Blood Rage’. It was inspired by an interest I had in exploring my Irish heritage, coupled with my intrigue of paganism and magic. This has seen creatures from celtic folklore work their way into the story, bringing some lesser known mythical beings into my writing.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Nothing I would really call unusual, I just come home from my day job and immerse myself in my life as a writer. This includes reading emails, reading books, writing reviews, blogging, marketing my books, networking and writing/editing new stories. Thankfully, I have a the love and support of an amazing woman behind me.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
I love Joe Abercrombie and find he has influenced my writing style. I also try to inject a little humour into my books where I can and I think this is a bit of Jackie Chan rubbing off on me.
What are you working on now?
Currently I have a few short stories in various stages of completion as I plan to release a series of shorts in an anthology of my own stories. These are mostly horror, but also include some fantasy. I also have a couple of novellas, but one, or both, may turn into novels because I am really enjoying the stories that are unfolding in them. Without giving too much away about the novellas/novels, one is about life and death and the other about a vampire in the making.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Promotion is tough. I have had my own blog for a while now that I have built an bit of a following on, but I have only recently started delving deeper into promoting my work. I am trying various things at the moment, including Facebook ads, networking in online groups and trying to get my books into bookstores and libraries.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Yes, read books, join a writers’ group/critique group, absorb as much as you can. Over time you will become more experienced and you will learn to filter out the bad advice. Listen to others, but be true to yourself. Becoming a good writer takes time, anticipate it is not going to happen overnight, believe in yourself and don’t give up – you only fail when you give up trying.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Oh boy, that’s a hard question. I’ve been given so much advice over the years. Thinking about it now, it is probably to join a writers’ group. That is probably the one thing that has helped me the most. I’ve learnt to give and receive feedback, filter good and bad advice, touch up on my grammar and learn new writing skills. It has put me in touch with other writers and writer’s resources. It has helped me to believe in myself as a writer and so much more. I can’t emphasise the benefits enough here, if you haven’t done so already, this is the one thing I would put on top of your list of things to do as a writer.
What are you reading now?
I have just finished reading The Final Empire (Mistborn #1) by Brandon Sanderson, and I loved it. I will probably start on Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve next, as I have been meaning to read this for some time. I also want to start on a book to help hone my writing skills called Creating Character Arcs by K.M. Weiland, as I am constantly researching the craft of writing, looking for ways to improve as a writer.
What’s next for you as a writer?
There is so much to do as a writer, it is so easy to get bogged down and not actually do any writing. Especially when you have a full time job. I am focussing on building my writing career in the hope that it will start to pay the bills and I can shift from my 40 hour a week job to writing full time.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
The Blade itself, Best Served Cold and An Argument of kings by Joe Abercrombie. I’d also take The Final Empire (Mistborn #1) by Brandon Sanderson.