Years ago, I had a friend who had started writing a book. He gave me the first few chapters to read, and I remember telling him how amazed I was that he was actually doing it. He was actually committed to his work, and he was writing a novel. It seemed like something insurmountable to me. It was something that was just too big to undertake. I told him about my ideas for stories, and that it just seemed like a pipe dream. He quoted another writer to me, and it is something that I will never forget:
"It's black on white. That's all there is to it."
Black ink on a white page. Black pixels on a white screen. That's all.
Those where the first thoughts I had when I sat down to write this novel. No excuses, just sit down, shut up, and put black on white.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I remember the first book with out pictures that I had ever read on my own when I was a kid. It was called, "The Cat Who Wished to be a Man" by Lloyd Alexander. I never really liked to read until I read that book. I remember being stuck at my grandma's after school one day, and all I had was that book to stave off the boredom. I had grabbed it from the library at school during library time, and I had only picked it because I liked cats. I ended up reading it as a last resort while languishing in my grandpa's overstuffed recliner. I don't know exactly when it happened, but I realized that as I was reading I stopped seeing the words on the page and instead was seeing pictures in my head. I was stunned! I thought maybe the book was somehow magical. Once I had broken the trance, I was worried that it wouldn't happen again. I started reading again, and found that I could lose myself over and over again. It was the closest to enlightenment I have ever come. I still think it is magic, and I still have a copy of that book to this day.
How do you approach cover design?
Practically. I have read many people's opinions that you have to make your cover clear enough that people can make out everything important even if it is shrunk down into a tiny thumbnail image. I think this is sound advice.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I like the Kobo, and I like Nook Simple Touch Glowlight. I prefer an e-reader that is a dedicated device with a simple black and white e-ink display. Everything else is a distraction.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
The town I grew up in is unapologetically weird, and it has a prominent roll in my work. I won't tell you where it is, but anyone who is interested could easily figure it out from the clues and legends in my writing.
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