Interview with John Southcross

What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy is bringing life to random thoughts. Sometimes it's just a scene in my head and from that I have created stories. For example, I imagined a guy standing in the middle of the forest and everything he looked at began to float away like powder in the wind. That scene grew into my novel DISINTEGRATION: A MEMOIR.
What do your fans mean to you?
They're a huge part of my inspiration. They're always in the back of my mind while I'm writing. I want to hook them with the story and have them thinking about it for a long time afterwards. If my story can provide an escape for them, even for just a little while, I think I've done my job. I want them to see the name John Southcross on a story and know that they can read and get away for a little while. At this point in my writing career I'm working on developing trust with my fan base so that they'll be willing to get in the car (or spaceship) with me and go for a ride. Obviously the novels will be longer rides and the short stories are the little trips someone can take more than once.
What are you working on next?
I'm working on a couple of short stories but my main project is still the novel tentatively titled THE HARVEST. It's a sci-fi novel that I wrote in 2009 but began to take apart a couple years afterwards. My day job kept getting in the way but the characters continued to call out to me until I finally gave in and got behind the keyboard again.
Who are your favorite authors?
Stephen King, Phillip K. Dick, Stephen Hunter, Ray Bradbury, Kurt Vonnegut, and Elmore Leonard---to name a few.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Love for family...which is the reason I have to get up for my day job.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Working and trying to be a relevant presence in my family's life.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Browsing on Amazon was how I used to see what was out there, typically. But since 2012 I've been checking out works here on Smashwords and Writing.com as well.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yeah. It was an attempt at a novella at the age of 14. The story was about a high school kid who wanted revenge on other kids who were picking on him. About 43 pages in I lost interest...ha ha.
What is your writing process?
I make sure I capture the scene/idea that inspires the story. If I'm away from my laptop I'll use the Notes feature of my iphone. When I get the chance I'll write a synopsis of the story, developing a scene or two as I go along. If some dialogue enters my head, I'll make sure to capture that as well. Basically I'm just capturing the main parts of the story, the turning point, the ending. After that I start cranking away at the story.

I've tried just letting my characters run with the story but I've had better results with a planned out story. Even then, the characters want to do their own thing.
How do you approach cover design?
I do all my own covers. I try to design covers that will catch a reader's eye and the cover has to tell the would-be reader what the story is about. What I'm shooting for is a cover that sets a mood, let's the reader know how the water in the pool is. Hopefully the reader will dip his or her toe into the water so I can grab them by the ankle and yank them in.
What do you read for pleasure?
I like reading some sci-fi, crime fiction, even some biographical pieces.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Kindle Fire.
Describe your desk
It's either my kitchen table or my bed.
When did you first start writing?
I started keeping a journal when I was 8.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
The need to get my story out and express myself is probably the biggest motivation. I haven't hit the sales we all dream of but I have sold some copies which technically makes me a "paid author." That goal was accomplished in 2012.
Published 2015-05-09.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

A Morning Smoke
Price: Free! Words: 2,050. Language: English. Published: May 8, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Action & suspense, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Spies & espionage
(3.00 from 2 reviews)
In this story we follow three workers who are going about their work routine at Smokestack 7. One of the men, however, has something else planned for the day.
Can't Get Enough
Price: Free! Words: 1,030. Language: English. Published: December 29, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi
(4.33 from 3 reviews)
A Sci-Fi love story about two people who try to make their love last forever.
Breakfast of Champions
Price: Free! Words: 1,050. Language: English. Published: December 27, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead
(4.33 from 3 reviews)
Norman and his wife have a very bad night.
Dinner At Mikey O's
Price: Free! Words: 1,060. Language: English. Published: December 25, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(3.67 from 3 reviews)
Things don't go quite as planned for Jared and Imelda at his favorite restaurant.
Dirty Lemonade
Price: Free! Words: 1,120. Language: English. Published: December 24, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » Black comedy, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Urban
(4.00 from 3 reviews)
An unemployed college grad takes to selling lemonade to earn a living and soon finds himself paying rent to run his lemonade stand.
Disintegration: A Memoir
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 68,980. Language: English. Published: December 8, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy, Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal
(4.00 from 1 review)
A young man without direction discovers that he has the ability to make things disintegrate. A visit to a park sets Nick Faustini on a path to finding a new career, but he soon realizes that being the most powerful man in the world doesn't necessarily mean that life will be perfect.