Interview with Daniel Sherrier

When did you first start writing?
Comic books made me do it. Well, they made me feel like I needed to create my own super-heroes and write their adventures. At age nine, I was writing and drawing my own homemade, very terrible comic books, and by middle school I had pretty much given up on drawing. I never figured out how to stop writing, and I kept branching out to other forms, like books, plays, and screenplays.
What's the story behind your books?
With Earths in Space, I basically mixed some of my favorite things and put my own twist on it. The cast dynamic is similar to that of a super-hero team -- they all have their special skills and colorful personalities. It's a pretty tight group that can facilitate all sorts of fun pairings, but no one is super-powered here. They're almost like a Star Trek crew without any of the random red-shirted officers who get killed every episode. The series shows a love of exploration similar to what we see in Doctor Who, though EIS has no time-travel or aliens. In fact, I initially pictured the lead character, Amena, as a sort of female Doctor, in part, though after writing I realized that another character, the mega-genius Sela, has at least equal claim to that title, probably more as the series progresses.

With RIP, I had this random idea: "What if a person had to physically beat up ghosts?" But the series didn't take shape until I thought of the good ghost Serissa, a lively dead girl who's trying really hard to earn a place in Heaven, even though she doesn't know for a fact such a place exists. And she can't touch anyone except Rip, with whom she forms a sort of intimate yet strictly platonic friendship. She's slowly going bonkers but persevering anyway. Because of her, I knew I had a series.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I'm not anti-traditional publishing by any means. My viewpoint is that indie publishing should be the first public step -- a way to prove yourself, pay your dues, and learn a lot. Later, in an ideal world, a mutually beneficial relationship with a publisher would develop. But the main goal now is just getting my work out there so that at least some people can start enjoying it. If my work can brighten someone's day a bit, then I'm happy.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love making stuff up and letting my imagination take over. It's a break from the real world, and yet it can reveal quite a bit about the real world as I get into a diverse array of character viewpoints.
What are you working on next?
Next up is Earths in Space vol. 2: We Must Evolve. It will pick up right where volume one leaves off. I've already written four new novellas and a little over 100,000 words total, and I'm continuing to edit because I keep thinking of better ways to do it. I'll publish sometime after I get it right.
Who are your favorite authors?
Mark Twain, Kurt Vonnegut, Douglas Adams, J.M. Barrie, J.K. Rowling, and a host of comic writers, including Peter David, Mark Waid, Brian Michael Bendis, and Gail Simone. My single greatest influence has been Joss Whedon. I learned quite a bit from watching Buffy and Firefly, and that likely accounts for the serialized novella/novelette format I've adopted for Earths in Space and RIP. I'm basically converting the season-long television arc structure into book series.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Exercise is very important for everyone, and even more so for people with sedentary jobs -- like writing. So, after years of training, I'm now a black belt in Thai kickboxing, and I continue to train. I also enjoy playing with my niece, which can sometimes be its own kind of workout. And I can always justify reading and watching good scripted television as writing homework.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
In the third grade, I wrote a short story titled “Wind’s Up.” It was about a boy versus a tornado. This tornado comes out of nowhere and scoops up his whole house—and him, too! While twirling around inside the tornado, he finds a piece of debris that he fashions into a surfboard, and he rides the winds until, luckily, he comes across a vacuum cleaner. So, naturally, he vacuums up the tornado, thereby restoring peace and tranquility. The things you can accomplish without a basic understanding of physics...
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first chapter book I remember reading was something called "Fat Men from Space." Now consider that the first book I ever published is called "Earths in Space: Where Are the Little Green Men?" You can draw your own conclusions.
How do you approach cover design?
I hire an excellent cover designer by the name of M.W. Messina. I ramble some ideas to him, and he somehow figures out what I really want. It's amazing.
Published 2013-11-25.
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Books by This Author

Earths in Space vol. 2: We Must Evolve
Series: Earths in Space. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 116,250. Language: English. Published: January 30, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Life can evolve. Amena saw the evidence on an ancient Earth. It wasn’t pleasant evidence, and it wasn’t evolution into sentient life, but she saw evidence. So okay, she accepts that no little green men exist on alien worlds, but maybe one of these other Earths holds evolved humanity. Evolution faces a powerful obstacle, however — humanity itself.
Earths in Space vol.1: Where Are the Little Green Men?
Series: Earths in Space. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 42,210. Language: English. Published: November 25, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure, Fiction » Adventure » Action
There are no aliens, but the universe is full of people. Other Earths are out there, each with a unique civilization. Amena has no idea what she'll discover. She can't wait.
RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death
Series: RIP. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 56,550. Language: English. Published: October 16, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Horror » Ghost
Rip Cooper must overcome his fears and kill dead people to prevent them from corrupting the living. This young loner learns he can perceive ghosts with his five senses as if they were flesh and blood, and he's just as solid to them -- pretty much the only solid thing. He works alongside an impure “angel” and his ex-best friend's ex-girlfriend as they teach him how love can lead to strength.