Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I’m a ghostwriter so I’ve taken on a huge variety of projects, everything from epic fantasy to cosy mysteries even Hollywood romance, though personally my preferred genre is science fiction. I haven’t made an official tally but I must be pushing twenty novels by now. What I need to do at this point is get all that experience and focus it on my own writing.
Aside from books I love to write films. I’ve had a few short films made but the big goal is to produce a feature script.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
With ‘blank tapes’ I wanted a place to bring together all the stories that just didn’t fit anywhere else. Misfit stories. Either because they didn’t fit any single genre, or were just to plain weird for traditional publications, or not commercial enough. That’s not to say they’re not any good, in fact I’m proud of the author’s collected in this book. They’ve done some great work. We seem to have hit on a running theme which worked out nicely, but it wasn’t intentional.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I tend to listen to music when I write. Loud music. Very loud music. I tend to prefer stuff without lyrics, or at least singers who you can’t understand. That might be Beethoven, though its more likely to be extreme Scandinavian Metal.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
I’m currently in love with N.K. Jemisin and her ‘Broken Earth’ trilogy, but going back I’d have to say Clive Barker, King (of course), and Asimov. Cormac McCarthy showed me that language is what you make of it. There are passages in Blood Meridian that I’m still gobsmacked by, and go back to read them to re-inspire me.
What are you working on now?
I have too many things on the boil at the moment. Do I focus on more anthologies? Or perhaps the sci-fi serial I started? Then of course there’s my epic fantasy novel I’ve been plotting out for the last ten years.
Though I’ll probably stick with the steampunk/caveman series ‘Albion Roddles, Cave-Gentleman of Renown.’
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
A good cover is always the best way to promote your work. Get that right and everything else falls in behind.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Surprise yourself. Write things that you’re not sure about and see where they go. The chances are that if you don’t know the outcome, then the reader won’t too. And that’s a good thing.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Your first draft is not sacred. It may seem like a chore, but the best writing you’re going to do is in the third, fourth, fifth rewrite.
What are you reading now?
Currently burning through Iain M Bank’s Culture series. What a legacy to leave behind. There’s not a bad one I’ve read so far. Endlessly inventive and impeccably written but above all funny. Banks is the secret successor to Douglas Adams.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I’ve written several large books recently so I think I’m going to head back to short stories again. You can pack plenty of story in a few hundred words and I love a good twist–shorts are perfect for that.
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?
Boat Craft for Beginners
Cooking with Coconuts
The Guide to Semaphore
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