Interview with Stewart Akass

Who are your favorite authors?
My favourite authors are: Agatha Christie, Philip Pullman, Stephenie Meyer, Suzanne Collins, Jean M.Auel, J.K. Rowling, J.R.R.Tolkien, Isaac Asimov, Ian Fleming, H.G.Wells, C.C.Lewis, Aldous Huxley, Ann Mccaffrey, Patrick Rothfuss.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read all the time on my Kindle. If I am not checking my novels on the device I am reading a novel. Currently, I am reading the 'The Wise Man's Fear' by Patrick Rothfuss.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
The Kindle keyboard device is my preferred choice. It is easy to use and perfect for both reading and editing novels.

I also have and Ipad, but I only use this as a double check that my formatting is correct, when displayed on the larger screen.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Currently I am developing my Blog.
When did you first start writing?
I began writing in March 2004 whilst on a vacation in New Zealand. My wife and I had been spending a number of days in the Abel Tasman Park on the South Island, and it came to me that this would be a great backdrop for a Science Fiction Romance novel. Up until then I had never had any inclination to write a novel so had no idea where to start.

When we returned to the Bed and Breakfast, I started to write an outline of the five novels on my Psion hand held device. By the time, we returned home to the UK I had written 30k words of the first book 'Island Homes’. I transferred this onto my laptop and completed writing the novel in November 2004.

The novel was too long, and grammar and formatting not at an acceptable level to consider publication. I invested in writing textbooks, and attended a creative writing course at my local college. I worked on correcting the book and at the same time continued to write the remaining four books of the series.
What is your writing process?
My first two novels, 'Island Homes' and ‘Virtual Companions’ were written entirely by typing into my Psion and laptop.

During the writing course I attended at a local college, they suggested that writing into a notebook had creative merit as it prevents you trying to edit as you write. As a result, I wrote the rest of the series in notebooks, mainly whilst on holidays, which I completed in March 2008, whilst backpacking in Thailand.

Editing is difficult as it is impossible to find all the mistakes, no matter how careful you are. I used a proofreader for 'Virtual Companions' but I still found grammar errors. I started again and, have rewritten all five novels, and with the assistance of friends, eliminated errors.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story I ever read was 'The Black Cloud' by Fred Hoyle. I was fifteen, and I loved it as it was Science Fiction. This novel set my interest in reading to Science Fiction and Fantasy which I read predominantly to this day.
How do you approach cover design?
I am not an artist so have been unable to produce original material. However, I do enjoy using photoshop, and have produced titles on existing photographs and drawings for a friends book covers.

For 'The Chronicles of Pet', I commissioned an artist to produce all the book covers to a specific brief. I told him how I wanted the characters to look, and he took pictures of suitable girls, and three were selected from which he made paintings. He provided me the images with the backgrounds and I added the titles.
Describe your desk
I have two desks in my office. One is for general work and only has a wireless printer on it. The other desk has four widescreen 19" monitors set in a curve. The two outside monitors are positioned in landscape mode, and the two middle monitors in portrait. The outside monitors are used for internet and e-mail, and the two middle monitors for word and excel. In combination with a powerful desktop computer, this arrangement has proved to be an effective writing configuration, compared to my laptop (which I only use when travelling).
What are you working on next?
I am currently writing a novel about a teenage girl and a dragon.
Published 2016-02-28.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

New World Reality
Series: The Chronicles of Pet, Part 5. Price: $1.33 USD. Words: 96,270. Language: British English. Published: January 17, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Adult, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
New World Reality, Part 5 - The Chronicles of Pet Set on Earth in the 22nd century, and follows the experiences of a few survivors from the UK, USA, and New Zealand after a pandemic, and earthquakes wipe out the world’s population.
You're Real and Here with Me
Series: The Chronicles of Pet, Part 4. Price: $1.33 USD. Words: 72,200. Language: British English. Published: January 16, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Adult, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Kath is in the only known group of survivors on Earth. Together with her partner Kent and her friend Holly, they pursue their desire to protect the future of humankind in spite of many setbacks and tragedies.
We Are Animal
Series: The Chronicles of Pet, Part 3. Price: $1.33 USD. Words: 107,390. Language: English. Published: November 19, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Adult, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
We are Animal, Part 3 -The Chronicles of Pet The year is 2159. In New Zealand, Kath finds she is still cut-off in a small town with a few friends and her partner Kent. As far as she knows, only the South Island has survivors from the pandemic, plus a small group from Scotland. Earthquakes rock the tranquil Takaka valley, and she hopes and pleads with her friend, Holly, to come and rescue her.
Virtual Companions
Series: The Chronicles of Pet, Part 2. Price: $1.33 USD. Words: 83,320. Language: British English. Published: January 17, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi, Fiction » Romance » Action/adventure
The Chronicles of Pet - Part 2 This is a Romance/Adventure/Action series. Set on Earth in the 22nd century and, is about the life of a few survivors after a pandemic and earthquakes wipe out the world’s population. Holly manages to persuade the isolated group on the island to go to the mainland. In New Zealand, Kath's situation on the south island is deteriorating due to large earthquakes.
Island Homes
Series: The Chronicles of Pet, Part 1. Price: $1.33 USD. Words: 68,630. Language: British English. Published: December 30, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi, Fiction » Romance » Action/adventure
Island Home, Part 1 - The Chronicles of Pet This is a Romance/Adventure/Action series. Set on Earth in the 22nd century, and follows the life of a few survivors after a pandemic and earthquakes wipe out the world’s population. Kath in NZ purchases a Smartphone, which is the coolest product on the planet. She meets Kent a scientist from the USA and, hopes he will be her first adult boyfriend.