Interview with Steve Hester

What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Knowing that there aren't any limits. Simple as that. Gothic is my first novel but before then I e spent most of my time writing plays and the like and each time there's always a little voice in the back of your head telling you that you can't aford to do this or that or this character will be difficult to cast.

When writing a book you're free to create whatever it is you want and the only thing that's holding you back is your imagination.
What are you working on next?
I have two books that I'm working on at the moment. The first is a direct sequel to Gothic and continues the stories of Rob, Jacob and the rest of the characters and the second is a non fiction book based on one of my passions: video games. The biggest problem is deciding which one to work on first!
Who are your favorite authors?
I have a few. I actually like Dan Brown even though he's an easy target his books are often fun and at the very least give you something to think on when the final page is turned.

My absolute favourite author though is Terry Pratchett. I've been reading the discworld books repeatedly for years now and they're wonderful. Sometimes fantastic, sometimes political but always funny and a genuine pleasure to read. If you've never picked one up I sugest you do so as soon as possible!
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Money! Ha, to be fair I am incredibly lazy most of the time so I would very happily stay in bed all day if I could get away with it, especially in winter.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I play a lot of video games, it did used to be films but over the last ten years or so gaming has become a bit of a passion. I love the stories and the way that gaming removes you from being passive in the fiction to in some cases having a direct impact on how the story can play out such as in the Mass Effect games.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Usually it comes down to if I know the author or series, how much the book is and the cover art. I'd say the cover art is the most important, more so with ebooks as there's so many vying for attention in such a small space so if you can stand out you can draw people in.

Of course you should never judge a book by its cover but as that could be the first time a reader might discover your book it's handy to have something that can draw them in for those crucial few seconds when they ponder about finding out more bout your material.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yeah! There's a table top RPG called Shadowrun made by the FASA corporation (or it was at the time) and it's best described as being Dungeons & Dragons meets Blade Runner. It's all high fantasy set in the future and I loved the fiction behind it. Myself and a few of my friends played it at school and I took the characters we'd created and knocked them together into a film script. Went down pretty well too!
What is your writing process?
I tend to use coffee to get me going. There's a little cafe near where I live so I'll settle down with a latte and pull out the iPad. I'm a bugger for just writing and seeing what happens then I tend to end up waffling on too much and have to do some serious trimming but with the second Gothic novel EVERYTHING is being plotted out ahead of time.

I think more than anything it's best to detach yourself from distractions though. I can't write at home as I'll end up procrastinating by playing a video game or watching TV. Getting out of the house to somewhere warm and with caffeine helps more than you think!
How do you approach cover design?
I had an idea about the cover to Gothic but I'm not an artist. A friend suggested one of their friends who was and I got in touch with him and sent him a rough scrawl that looked bloody aweful but he was very quickly able to turn it into the wonderful cover that the book now has.

I think the design has to be striking though as I mentioned elsewhere. On an ebook it's very important that you get something that can stand out as a thumbnail.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Personally I use an iPad mini. I did have a full sized iPad when they first came out but the size of the mini is perfect for using as an reader. I could have gone down the kindle route but I already had too many apps so Apple have me good and proper!
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I think social media is a great help, Twitter moreso than Facebook. Both are great but with Facebook you're pretty much preaching to the choir whereas with Twitter you can reach a much wider audience.

With Gothic being set in the local area to me, local newspapers can also be a help in starting things off but unless you have a marketing budget the biggest help is word of mouth.
Describe your desk
Don't have one. I have a table in a cafe which at the moment is a wooden square with an empty paper coffee cup, my iPhone, watch and Christmas shopping on it.
Published 2014-12-12.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Gothic
Price: $2.80 USD. Words: 69,370. Language: British English. Published: December 9, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Contemporary, Fiction » Horror » General
Rob Stokes is an unremarkable twenty-one year old. He has a routine job, does ordinary things and tonight is going to a party hosted by his best friend but in a short time his world will be changed forever as he becomes hunted by both a demonic assassin and a secret society trying to defend the earth from the forces of both Heaven and Hell.