Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Hello, I’m Jeremy McLean. I’m Canadian and live in New Brunswick. I’m kind of a geek and I love to play video games when I have the spare time. The novels I like to read are fantasy and sci-fi.
I’ve currently written three novels, two in a series and one a companion novella about one of the side characters. They are Blackbeard’s Freedom, Blackbeard’s Revenge, and Bartholomew Roberts’ Faith.
The first two are a mix of historical fiction and light fantasy elements (one reviewer likened it to Indiana Jones, so think Indiana Jones meets Pirates of the Caribbean). The third novella is closer to historical fiction and doesn’t have any fantasy elements in it.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest book is called Bartholomew Roberts’ Faith. It’s about the pirate, Bartholomew Roberts, and how he went from working on a slave ship to becoming a pirate. The main reason I wanted to write it is because I love pirates and I always found Bartholomew Roberts an interesting person.
According to history he was a man of God and regularly held bible studies with his crew. He also instituted his own “pirate commandments” aboard his ship, no doubt inspired by the biblical commandments.
I wanted to take what we knew about him from history and fill in the gaps as to why he might have become a pirate despite believing in the bible, as the act of piracy seems to be condemned by the bible.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
When I’m deep into writing, I like to break up my writing by watching a TV show on Netflix. So I’ll write for a while, watch an episode of something, write some more, watch another episode, etc. You’d think it would not be productive, but it works quite well for me.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
When I was younger, the Pendragon series really inspired me to write. It had such an open ended world where it felt like anything could happen, and I really wanted to create something like that myself.
I’ve always love pirates, which is the reason I’m writing a pirate series right now, and there is a manga called One Piece which is about pirates in a fantasy world. The characters, locations, and plot are all stellar and I’m constantly inspired by the ingenuity of the author.
Currently, I’m loving the Song of Ice and Fire series and find those books enthralling. George RR Martin knows how to build a world and make you care for characters, only to take them away. It’s realistic and at the same time fantastic. I love how he’s able to maintain that balance.
What are you working on now?
I am currently working on the finishing touches on the sequel to the novella, Bartholomew Roberts’ Faith, which will be called Bartholomew Roberts’ Justice. It follows directly after the end of the first book, so telling too much would be spoilers. You’ll have to read them to find out more.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
If you find the best one let me know!
I find the biggest promotional tool that just works is Kindle’s KDP Select promotions. I’ve tried things on Fiverr and other places where people tweet about the book and it just never seems to do anything, but when I put my books on sale or for free I definitely see an uptick in buyers.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write, write, and write some more. Write even when you have writer’s block. Push past it as best you can because any mistakes can be fixed during editing. You’ll get better as you write, and soon enough you’ll have a novel you can be proud of to publish.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
I recently heard a quote which I love. “If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.” ― Haruki Murakami
What are you reading now?
The Song of Ice and Fire.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I’m just going to keep working on my series and try to improve sales. I’m hoping to make this my full time job, but, of course, who isn’t?
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?
Pendragon #9 – Raven Rise
The Count of Monte Cristo
and this is probably cheating, but, The Complete Sherlock Holmes Collection in one volume.
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