Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
You might say I am the Grandma Moses of the literary world. Not that I’m 90 years old, no, I’m 64. I just started out late in life like she did with her art. Currently, I have written one novel.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
Shadow’s Prisoners was due to a blog, a cancelled trip to Ireland and my wife’s broken ankle. This deserves a better explanation.
The chance to go to Ireland and meet my relatives, all of whom I had recently heard about, arrived. We prepared and researched for the upcoming trip. After all, this was going to be a dream come true. My relatives in the states and “across the pond” were excited for us.
But suddenly and unexpectedly, my wifes longest and best friend passed away. We jumped ona plane to Ohio, where Billie (my wife) wrote a eulogy that she was to read at her friend’s funeral. Unfortunately, she never reached the pulpit. The poorly lit church masked a tricky step on the way to the altar. Billie fell and ended up in a hospital where she underwent surgery to repair a broken ankle. Afterwards her doctor advised that all long plane trips must be avoided. Ireland was a no-go.
At home I started a blog to keep everyone advised about her changing condition. I even began to journal a fantasy trip to Ireland for my wife’s enjoyment. I figured that if we can’t physically go there now, we can at least go there in our mind. Soon some relatives thought we actually went to Ireland despite the doctor’s orders not to go.
I was feeling proud about my blog, my writing mojo had returned.
“Well, what’s next?” Billie asked me.
The next day I set about writing a novel that I was to finish thirteen months later.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I can’t type worth a lick. So when I was writing Shadow’s Prisoners, I always had a small spiral notepad in my back pocket. Each morning, I added more to the book on the train. Sometimes when the train was stalled between stations, I would fill twenty pages.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Stephen King. The “Tunnel” series by Gordon Roderick.
What are you working on now?
Some of the characters in my last book were extremely interesting. I am writing a spinoff.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
The social network proves invaluable. Facebook is a gem. It is an ideal place to join writing groups. Also I have been checking out YouTube videos about self-publishing and marketing ideas. That is where I discovered this website.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write what you know and not what you think you know. Your life experiences can be invaluable when writing. Also, unless you are lucky, self-publish your work. The traditional route is fast becoming the “only” way to have your book read by a large audience.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Your writing is your legacy, so make it shine.
What are you reading now?
Aside from the questions on this interview, I am reading Let’s Get Digital.
What’s next for you as a writer?
A humorous memoir.
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?
Any four books that I never read.
Author Websites and Profiles
J.Paddy Spaight Website