Interview with Dominic Sceski

Published 2015-06-25.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I do! I wrote my first story when I was seven, and it was "twenty-three" pages long. I say "twenty-three" because it technically wasn't that long. I left lots of room for pictures, just to make it seem like it was longer.
The story actually instigated a novel that took me another seven to eight years to finish. I kept the same plot, but obviously many things changed (including the size of the novel). The story/novel was about a knight whose little brother was kidnapped by a group of monsters (called Gilliks), and he had to rescue his little brother before the monsters turned him into one of them. The novel, although it's not published yet, is sitting at four-hundred pages, with the next book in the series fully written too!
What is your writing process?
Hmm. That's a tough one. The way I usually play it is like this; think of an exciting beginning to the book/series. Really try to think of something gripping, and maybe even dark. Establish a big problem that your main character will have to solve. Get yourself excited about your book. Then, decide who your characters are going to be. Develop them a little. And then, design the ending. After that? Fill in everything between.
Maybe that sounds a little...disorganized. But it works for me! I also like to invert the saying "quality, not quantity". If you initially write for quantity, you'll find that all your crazy ideas, subplots, and characters will be able to grow and expand. Some of the ideas and subplots may not be useful to the story; that's where the "quality" part comes in. But I never make outlines; I never limit myself like that. Explore, experiment, and create. Then you can erase and rewrite.
That's usually how my process works.
How do you approach cover design?
My younger sister happens to be quite talented! She's very generous with her time and, thankfully, she enjoys drawing for me too! Usually, she'll need a reference or too, because, in spite of being talented, she's still got a lot to learn. After she produces the image, I use a graphic tablet to color the cover. Sure, it may not be entirely professional, but so far I've been very pleased with what we've been able to create.
And hey, it doesn't cost a dime!
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Oooo. Not an easy question. I really like Eragon and Inheritance by Christopher Paolini. Very exciting, lots of character development, and a great plot (although there are definitely hints that he got some ideas from Star Wars for his series). Next would be Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins. If you've ever read any of The Hunger Games series, I'm sure you'd know why. Her writing is both gripping and meaningful. She does a great job of displaying human emotion.
I also love The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. How can you go wrong? The Hobbit has a very cheerful feel to it, but it's also got a great plot, and realistic characters.
Number five? The Moon is Down by John Steinbeck. It wasn't exactly what I expected. But, although it was so short, it revealed truths about war and humanity that many of us never even stop to consider.
So that's my five!
What do you read for pleasure?
I'm a lover of fantasy. Therefore, just about anything with fantasy in the genre will interest me. I can go with science-fiction too, but fantasy is number one!
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Making my first book free :D
Describe your desk
Messy. Enough said.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Ah, that's a nice question. I'm glad you asked!
I'm working on releasing the third volume of my series "The Golden Lands". Volume 3 is about the main characters (John Hedekira, Faith Pinck, and Bernard Tanner) being hunted by the "Ghost of Hedekira". As his name implies, the "ghost" is after John, but nobody knows why. The "ghost" is slaughtering innocent people and stirring up chaos in villages all throughout the northern region of the Golden Lands. There are rumors too of the "ghost" possessing strange powers. Whoever or whatever he is, he's a fierce warrior, and not to be reckoned with. John and his friends can only hope that they'll be able to pass through the North without having to face this ghost. They can only hope they won't be found.
...Well, so much for hope.
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