Interview with Devon Gidley

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up overseas. I spent time in Africa, Europe, Central America, and Asia. The most obvious influence on my stories is the diversity of the characters. They come from all over. This creates opportunities for conflict and connection. One of my primary themes is how and why people connect. This applies to me as a reader as well. On the surface, I may have nothing in common with a character, but I connect with them anyway. Where I grew up has shown me that people of varying backgrounds are similar in some ways.
Any coupons?
Book 1 -- HS77J
Book 2 -- CN95F
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I had an agent, and I thanked him for his hard work and efforts on my behalf. The thing that is important to me is connecting with the audience. I could have made a couple changes that would have made the book more marketable, more like everything else already out there. As a writer, I need to try to make the personal universal. I can't do that if I change too much to be like every other book.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The Luna Cycle is about loneliness and connection. It's set in college because that is the first time I felt the full effects of being alone. You don't have your family anymore or your old friends. Everything starts anew. That can feel difficult, insurmountable, but a lot of people feel it. You just need to find something to connect over.
When did you first start writing?
I couldn't spell as a child. For the longest time I thought this meant that I couldn't write. It wasn't until I started using a computer with spell check that I got over that. I began to believe that writing was more than just writing words and sentence mistake free. It was about what you had to say.
In 9th grade, I wrote my first important piece of writing. It was an epic poem (of two pages) called "The Lion Hunter." It was the first time anyone was impressed with what I had written. More importantly, it was the first thing that I was proud to have written. That year I changed from being a science/math guy to being an artist (in my heart).
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I remember the first one that mattered. It was an epic poem in the 9th grade. Epic is style, not length because it was only 2 pages. It was the first time I truly felt I could write. Everything else before that was nothing in comparison. I had to read it in front of the entire class. There shouldn't have been anything more terrifying to me than that, but I was proud of the story. I was proud to share it. It didn't even matter what they thought. I just needed them up to listen. That's what started this all.
What is your writing process?
Stephen King wrote a great book "On Writing" (titled that too). For him, it's a journey, a discovery. I don't write like him. I write the opposite way. I plan and outline and figure everything out, then I begin to write it. I don't much enjoy the actual process of writing. I much prefer the ideas, characters, themes, twists, revelations, choices. Putting the actual words on the screen is almost an afterthought.
For "Luna Waxing," I wrote out all my ideas. I arranged them and organized them to fit into the year long arc of the book. It may seem like a more artificial way of writing, but I think it creates a better work of art. I know the ending before I write the beginning. I'm not worried about where I'm taking the reader. They shouldn't be either.
How do you approach cover design?
I hire a professional artist. For the "Luna Cycle" (because it is a series), I knew I needed an image that would tie all the books together. The obvious one was the moon, different phases to correspond with the book titles. I also wanted something striking, a single image to capture the readers attention. It had to be different. I threw ideas at my artist until she found some she liked. For the first one, it was that "what is this" feeling of a moon piercing a strawberry. It just grabs the eye. The cover for the second one was designed around reflecting the theme. The third one combines the first two ideas -- theme and image.
Loraina Trethewey did all three covers. You can find her here.
http://www.linkedin.com/in/lorainatrethewey
Who helped you with these books?
A bunch of people as always. Luna Dark is dedicated to my old English teacher and my writing tutors in college.
Amanda Lubit helped edit and proofread my drafts. You can find some of her own writing here -- http://www.openequalfree.org/author/amandalubit
Matt McCloud has helped edit my other works and served as a backboard for my ideas for a few years now.
Loriana Trethewey did a fantastic job on the covers.
Published 2014-08-27.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Luna Dark: Book 3 of the Luna Cycle
Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 132,110. Language: English. Published: June 21, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
The trilogy ending part of the Luna Cycle. Celeste Nix is finishing up college at the Evergreen State College. Together, she and Haruki are trying to figure out what they want to do with their lives. New characters and old push them in different directions. What kind of life should they live? Selfish, honorable, fearful, or something of their own choosing? Luna origins are revealed.
Luna Waning: Book 2 of the Luna Cycle
Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 105,270. Language: American English. Published: March 30, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
It's a new school year at the Evergreen State College. Celeste Nix hopes that means a return to normalcy. But things with a Luna never are. Haruki is holding something back from her. Their relationship stands on shaky ground. That's before a new professor with too many questions and a beautiful foreign girl show up to test our heroes resolve.
Luna Waxing: Book 1 of the Luna Cycle
Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 95,640. Language: American English. Published: January 19, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
What would you do if you couldn’t hug, kiss, or touch the person closest to you? Celeste Nix thinks she going to a college like any other. And it is, except for some of the people in class. There is Iris, the three-color-dyed-hair pixie girl. There is Hunter, the hunky soccer playing senior. There is Lupe, the modern day Wicca. And then there is Haruki. She doesn't know what he is. Yet.