Interview with Clinton Reel

When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Video games or studying for my Bachelor's! I am currently playing Super Smash Bros. For Wii U with friends (Ganon main!), Neverwinter Nights, and Fortnite every now and again. However, I have been putting more and more time into studying for my Bachelor's in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance!
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Unfortunately, yes. Before I dabbled lightly in fan fiction in my younger years, I did try to write a Legend of Zelda-esque book. However, when I finished it and showed it to my sister, she noted that around 90% of the book was dialogue! Also, since I was young, I was convinced I was the second-coming of Tolkien, haha.
What is your writing process?
Kick back after a long day of work, put on some tunes (usually something soothing such as The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim's ambient music or even anime soundtracks), have a cold drink next to me, and write away! I took in the idea that I should write first and edit later, which helped me make the book even faster.

After I finished the book, I went back through and edited it myself several times before sending it out to beta readers!
How do you approach cover design?
For the first The Illiad Chronicles book, I decided to take it a different route and make it a contest on 99designs. I put up my price for it, it attracted people, and they worked hard to out-do one another for my approval. It went back in forth for about a week with a ton of different designs from a ton of different, very talented designers. Luckily for me, one of them had a design I was looking for!
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My Galaxy S8! I am happy to live in an age where one device can hold hundreds to even thousands of books at once from many different retailers.
When did you first start writing?
The youngest I remember myself writing was seven. At first, it was incoherent sentences - since I was learning sentence structures and what-have-you - and full of mistakes. I was influenced heavily by works like Harry Potter and wanted to make something like it, with little success. It wasn't until I was a little bit older, maybe nine, when I started to write fanfictions or attempt to write my first novel, which was mostly dialogue.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The Illiad Chronicles is the compilation of years of work, rework, more rework, redesign, and, finally, writing. It started with the idea that I wanted a new fantasy world that was familiar but, when you look deeper, was very, very different. Some of the more significant fantasy books had lighter stories or didn't go much into darker themes, something of which I wanted to try on my first venture.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Let's be honest: This is the dawn of a new age in writing. Authors from all over the globe can now, fairly easily, share their stories with others in an instant. The publishing route would, more than likely, take away from what I am trying to accomplish as well as my creativity. I want MY story to be told to the world!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Seeing the reactions of my readers! To me, this was never about the money, fame, or whatever else, it was always about sharing my world, my creation, with others. Writing an intense scene is one thing, but to hear a reader go "Wow, that was amazing!" is even better!
What do your fans mean to you?
Everything! Book writing is not my first venture, and will most certainly not be my last. Before, I was a machinima director, YouTube Let's Player, content producer, and speedrunner. Every step in my journey has allowed me to meet fans from all over and I can never thank them enough for it. On sites like Twitch, I can even interact with them and hang out with them, which is always an awesome feeling!
Who are your favorite authors?
Predictable, but J.K. Rowling, Daniel Handler (Lemony Snicket), J.R.R. Tolkien, and C.S. Lewis!
Published 2018-04-03.
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