Interview with Leon Gower

When did you first start writing?
Must have been around grade 3 when I first became inspired to write. I had no idea how at the time, didn't really start writing until I was an adult, but my teacher became so impressed by my imagination that she sat down with me. I recall she had me slow down as I told her a story and she turned it into a book.
As a child I won several contests at school for my stories, all written out by different people because I had no idea how to write; enabling me to be both creative and complacent.
What's the story behind your latest book?
In the blink of an eye I create a story, the story of a world which exists in the blinking of my eyes. The distant worlds explored in my sleep are given life as I dwell on each one and how they overlap; a reality more fantastic than even I can understand.
Universal Constance is a play on words, the story of truths that hold regardless of who you are and where you live.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
It's a changing world. For a while I taught English and maths to both disadvantaged youths and adults, every day I told them "You can start today, you can do whatever you want and you don't need anyone's permission or help". One day a student told me he was writing a book, apparently he'd been writing it for several years. When I told him about my collection of half written books he asked me why I didn't follow my own advice. 2 months later I finished a rough draft.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords helps with structure and adds a level of industry professionalism I wouldn't have created on my own. They add structure and fame my work with many tips and pointers, but I'm not really here to write an advert for Smashwords, heck they don't need my endorsement; they ROCK!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Having someone I care about read my work and take something from it. When a person can identify with my insanity and realize we're all a little nuts. I think I've made a difference.
What do your fans mean to you?
As a reader, I purchase a book and once read it becomes a member of my family. I view my readers in the same way; once a person has read my book, they are part of my family.
What are you working on next?
I have so many half finished skeletons in my cupboard it's hard to know which one to pick up and polish; I'll have to wait till the characters kidnap me and force me to finish their story. Till then I'll take it easy and work on making a few movies.
Who are your favorite authors?
Isaac Asimov is my key inspiration.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Tezla Ben my Bengal cat. His inspiration is direct and pointed. If I don't obey the demands of my beast he will eat me, starting with the soft flesh behind my feet.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Creating. I need to create and build. I believe firmly that we can all use the tools currently available to improve a situation. I see foggy problems and focus on clear solutions; sounds like a catch phrase but it's true. Currently I'm making several tv shows and documentary and a short film, all while trying to build the local film industry and create opportunities for people who could use a spot of luck.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I don't really read a lot of ebooks, heck I don't find time to read much of anything lately but when I do it's typically because I've stumbled across an author who's published their first work.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes. Though it's title eludes me. As an adult I wrote 2 books which hit the scrap heap both around 80k words. "A raven's song" (vampire based) and "The Dark Doctor" (A twist on time travel)
What is your writing process?
A spark of a concept strikes me. I then write a 1 paragraph (perhaps even 1 sentence) description of that spark. From that paragraph I create a dot point skeleton and each dot becomes a chapter.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Heck no, spent too much time in my own imagination.
How do you approach cover design?
Slowly and from the side. If it knows you're there then it'll get away!
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Asimov * 5 and Asimov.
Describe your desk
Desk? Nope, I write on scraps of paper and napkins, I then tote them around and misplace them under the bed for a few years before sweeping them up in a heap. Finally, after digging around in the garbage can looking for bits of food I discover a good idea!
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
Second star to the right and straight on till morning.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I wrote a lot of poetry and kept it all on my laptop. One day I walked into the lounge room to find my son had discovered my secret folder of poems, he was reading them to my daughter and she looked inspired.
How did you come up with the title?
The title is always the first thing I write; It comes straight from the raw idea and often inspires the rest of the story.
Do you see writing as a career?
Anyone who sees writing as a career is not a writer. The best reason to be a Doctor is a desire to heal the sick, not make money. The best at anything is a person who is compelled beyond the drive of finance.
How much of the book is realistic?
All my work is fiction based in fact. So when I write a bromance book it's researched and based on case studies, when I write a paranormal story it's also well researched and based on actual events... Provided you consider a person's dreams to be real events.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Message? Maybe, but there are a few Easter Eggs ;)
Can you share a little of your current work with us?
hmm, okay. But only a snippet from a thought regarding Constance in book 3. Each story grows from the title and this title is "Universal Constance: The Lucky Break". Readers of the second book may find many clues in that but I'll also give a hint about the Easter Eggs, there is a missing chapter in Book 2. When I first published it Smashwords rejected the book as being incomplete; they viewed the missing chapter as a format error. I can assure readers, it's no error.
Published 2014-07-30.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.