Interview with John McKenzie

What do you read for pleasure?
Really I have two main genres that I read for pleasure, the first is horror - particular favourites include 'Slugs' and 'Breeding Ground' by Shaun Hutson and 'When There's No More Room in Hell' by Luke Duffy, while the second genre is mystery/detective novels such as the Montalbano series (Camilleri) and the Inspector Bordelli series (Vichi).

However, I also read a lot of non-fiction film and scriptwriting books in order to learn new skills and delve further into what makes a story or film work.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My main e-reading device of choice is a Kobo Arc, not really a tablet and not strictly a dedicated e-reader it seems to combine the best of both worlds. However, when commuting without it I thankfully have a Kindle app on my smartphone.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Quite simply social media has been the best way to reach audiences, although it is hard to reach out and stand out from the noise, the ROI and reach simply make it the most cost effective.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest novel 'Venezia Violenta' is a zombie outbreak story set in Venice. It was inspired by a recent trip there and due to its narrow, claustrophobic streets littered with tourists and the proximity of the canals it seemed a logical place for an outbreak.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Quite frankly the desire to be creative and have no restrictions while I learn and develop my craft.
What are you working on next?
I am currently working on a new zombie outbreak story, a murder mystery and a a few TV scripts. All due later in 2015.
What is your writing process?
I plan out a rough outline of the story and then delve into character backstories and traits. From here I re-develop the story, fleshing out the detail and begin a rough, longer outline.
How do you approach cover design?
It has to be something different from all of the other self-publsihed authors - grabbing the readers attention, yet related to the story and it's tone.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Slugs and Breeding Ground by Shaun Hutson, British humour mixed with trashy horror are easily up there. While Outbreak (Jones) and When Theres No More Room In Hell (Duffy) are perfect zombie reading material. Finally, I couldn't pick just one but the Montalbano series are extremely addictive reading.
Describe your desk
Cluttered, messy and inspirational.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the South West of the UK where we felt slightly out of the usual Country politics and trends.
Published 2015-04-08.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.