Interview with Trevor Marsh

What's the story behind your latest book?
I play a lot of space 4x strategy games. The four X's stand for eXplore, eXpand, eXploit, and exTerminate. In these games you control an empire, either human or alien, and start its development from a single world as you settle new colonies, research technologies, enter into treaties with other empires, and fight your enemies with spaceships. When I play these games I always make up little stories in my head, adding characters to my ships I commanding and planet's I'm colonizing. This is how I got into writing fan fiction. Eventually, I decided to try doing the same thing as a full on novel without using the setting from any particular game. The result is my first book, Politics by Other Means.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing in the 8th grade. I had an English teacher assign us the task of writing a short story about whatever we wanted. My first draft was about a NASA engineer who was battling alcoholism which resulted in some catastrophe in space, but my teacher thought the topic was too "adult" and made me change it. I was upset at first, but I quickly set about coming up with a new story. This time, it was all about aliens attacking Earth and human spaceships fighting them off. I included illustrations of the spaceships, a lamented cover, the whole nine yards. In the end, I got a B+ and some girl in my class who wrote about magical ponies got an A. I was not the biggest fan of my 8th grade English teacher. Ever since then, I've mostly been writing fan fiction pieces for science fiction video games and posting them in gaming forums which people seem to appreciate.
Who are your favorite authors?
David Weber is probably the author who has most influenced me. His Honor Harrington series, along with his Starfire series co-written with Steve White, are my go to science fiction novels to re-read. I'm also a big fan of John Scalzi, Walter John Williams, Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, and Orson Scott Card.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I am the son of a retired United States Navy captain. As a Navy brat, I spend my life moving every three years between different postings. I was born up near Seattle, Washington, but I've also lived in Washington D.C., Florida, California, and Singapore. Singapore was very influential for me because it was my first time living outside the United States and experiencing other peoples and cultures. Living in Singapore awoke in me a deep interest in international relations and cultural exchanges that I still possess to this day.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I used an original Nook myself, black-and-white with no fancy things like data or full touch screens. I'll probably end up upgrading one day, but for now my Nook is working just fine for my reading purposes and I have no plans of replacing it.
Describe your desk
My desk is cluttered with lots of papers scattered everywhere. Organized chaos I would call it. I know exactly where everything is, mostly, and if I need something I can easily find it quite often. I tend to keep things in piles based on their immediate importance to me.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I've been reading science fiction for years, both from well established authors and indie ones. My fascination with science fiction knows no bounds. When I decided that I wanted to write my own book, I started looking for the best way to go about publishing it. The traditional publishing route sounded like too long of a process for me, with no guarantee of success. So instead, I turned to Smashwords to become an indie author and get my book directly out to others like myself who enjoy science fiction so much.
What are you working on next?
I am working on the sequel to my first novel. It is titled "A Sleep Giant" and it will pick up a few years after the ending of my first book, following along the two main characters. I'll be doing most of the writing this fall and I'll be looking to finish editing and publishing in spring 2016.
Published 2015-09-07.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Last Refuge from Earth
Series: Refugees of Earth. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 51,150. Language: English. Published: June 1, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Jonathan Martinez was only four years old the day the Earth died. He spent his entire adult life bouncing around refugee camps set up for humanity’s survivors watching his family being torn apart by disease and heartless bureaucratic rules. But when he learns of his wife’s passing and the uncertain fate of his daughter he will cross alien worlds and face any threats he must in order to save her.
Destroyer of Worlds
Series: Worlds of Words and War. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 53,710. Language: English. Published: February 4, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Military, Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera
An old and powerful enemy has arisen to once again threaten all life in the known galaxy. Secretary of State Samuel Lawrence and Fleet Admiral Michelle Lui must fight to save humanity and its allies from this threat, but first they must tame the flames of dissent and rebellion that are poised tear the United Earth Federation apart from within.
A Sleeping Giant
Series: Worlds of Words and War. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 80,830. Language: English. Published: May 14, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Military, Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera
Newly minted Ambassador Samuel Lawrence is the United Earth Federation's diplomatic representative to the S'lorian Empire, an ancient power which helped save humanity from an alien invasion ten years ago. Rear Admiral Michelle Lui now commands her first taskforce of warships on the S'lorian border. When old forces awaken to challenge the galactic peace Sam and Michelle will have to act to save it.
Politics by Other Means
Series: Worlds of Words and War. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 76,570. Language: English. Published: August 25, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Military, Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera
A military science fiction novel with space opera elements, where humanity has just begun to establish itself amongst dozens of other alien species seeking to exploit a series of wormhole connected star systems. It will be up to two unlikely heroes, Samuel Lawrence, an Earth diplomat, and Michelle Lui, a female naval captain, to save the Earth from invasion by brutal and cunning alien menace.