Interview with Edward Mullen

What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Like most people, I live to be happy, and one of the things that makes me happy is being creative. Whether it's through a blog, story, podcast, video, or whatever, each day presents an opportunity for me to create something. Life is like a board game, and board games are the most fun when it's your turn and you're winning. So each day I wake up, it feels like it's my turn, I get to roll the dice and move my token a step ahead.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book just came out in October 2013 and it's called Prodigy. It's set a hundred years in the future and focuses on a genius girl named Alex.

It came about in two ways:

First, I wanted to write a novel that was drastically different than my first book. Before sitting down to write it, I had already decided to pursue a career in writing. I had written one novel called The Art of the Hustle, which is a rags-to-riches tale based on my life. I figured if I wanted to pursue a career in writing and take myself seriously as a writer, I should be able to write about stuff I know nothing about. So I deliberately handicapped myself as a challenge just to see if I could do it. I made the protagonist female, gave her a form of autism called synesthesia, and set it 100 years in the future. The book was much more challenging to write, but I pulled it off. So far the reviews are even better than my first book.

The second story behind this book is that at the time, I just bought an iPhone and was so impressed with it. I loved the idea that you could carry around so much information in your pocket. I then asked myself, if this phone exists now, what will they have a 100 years from now? I came to the inevitable conclusion that information would be downloaded directly into a person's brain. And if that's true, I then asked what would that do to society? So that's the setting of Prodigy — brilliant people in a hyper-advanced society.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy for me is seeing how the story comes out. It has been said that writers get to play god — we create a world and decide what happens. That is exciting for me, and it makes me feel youthful. Most children have wild imaginations and then over time, that creativity often gets squeezed out of them. Adults rarely pretend and play, instead they are content with watching movies or television, listening to music, or reading for entertainment. I like those things too, but I find much more joy in dictating the action the way I see fit — crafting a story in a way that makes the most sense to me at that time.

The other joy for me is that writing is very challenging. It takes many, many years of practice to be able to craft coherent and interesting sentences and then find the right words to describe what's in your head. But you also need to tell interesting stories, be disciplined, and work hard. All the these things are very different skill sets, which are not mutually inclusive. For instance, you could be the best writer in the world — the best crafter of sentences and have the riches vocabulary, but unless you have good ideas and discipline, then you have nothing.
What is your writing process?
In one of my videos called How to Write a Novel, I describe myself as an extensive planner. I start with an idea several months before I start writing. In those preceding months, I take lots of notes. Once I feel I have enough notes, I put together an outline. I use the outline to then create a more detailed storyboard of ten or so chapters, and then I begin to write. I have written six books, and I have used this process for five of the books. In my latest novel, I abandoned this approach and just freestyled it. I had no idea what the story was going to be and just wrote whatever came to me. Both styles work, but they are perhaps project specific.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, it's called Metallica and I believe it was about a roadie who toured with the famous rock group. I wrote it in grade 6 through our writer's workshop program. Even as a kid, that was my favourite subject. I still have all the stories I wrote as a kid, but I haven't read them in a while so I forget what they are about.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Some of the day-to-day activities I enjoy doing are reading, watching movies or TV shows, playing with my cat, hanging with my girlfriend, etc. Other things I enjoy, but don't get to do everyday, are travel, mountain bike, play sports, workout, eat nice meals, etc.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I cannot recall the first story I read, but I think it might have been Charlie and the Chocolate factory or some other Roald Dahl book. I really liked Dahl as a kid and also choose your own adventure novels. Those really captured my imagination. I also read a lot of Mercer Meyer and Robert Munsch books as well.
What do you read for pleasure?
As a fiction writer, most people may be surprised to learn that I mainly read non-fiction. I enjoy biographies a lot such as Steve Jobs, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Donald Trump, Warren Buffett, and Richard Branson. I also read lots of book about business, stocks, negotiation, marketing, and philosophy. I've even read a few books about survival. In terms of fiction, I like John Grisham, Dan Brown, Michael Crichton, Arthur Conan Doyle, Jules Verne, and Mark Twain. I even dabble in comic books, reading mainly Superman, Spider-Man and Batman. My favourite two books are The Art of the Deal by Donald Trump (which inspired me to write The Art of the Hustle), and Catch Me if You Can by Frank W. Abagnale Jr.
When did you first start writing?
I always enjoyed writing as a kid and would love to play GI Joe or with my Batman action figures. I would spend hours creating scenarios and then acting them out. Then when I was a bit older and email came out, I would write short stories and email them to my friends. Many years later, I graduated university (in 2010) and was left with a huge void in my life. I needed a project to fill that void, so I decided to try writing a novel. As it turned out, I wrote almost everyday for 12-16 hours and completed the novel in six weeks. Despite spending so many hours writing, it was fun and didn't seem like work to me. That's when I realized I had a passion for writing and wanted to pursue it full time.
Published 2013-10-12.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

I am Rome
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 58,810. Language: English. Published: July 22, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Seventeen-year old pizza delivery boy Joe Smith lived a simple life. He had a bike, a job, and a crush on a girl, but that was about to change.
The Art of the Hustle 2
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 70,400. Language: English. Published: June 29, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Business
Equipped with a new perspective and lease on life, billionaire prodigy Trevor Morrison returns to his roots to take on the greatest challenge he has yet to face.
Eden
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 62,300. Language: English. Published: December 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Action & suspense
The king sci-fi thrillers, Edward Mullen delivers with Eden — a story about a young couple who travel to Europe and discover they are the last two people on the planet.
The Set-Up
Price: Free! Words: 2,460. Language: Canadian English. Published: February 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » General
(1.00)
This is a work of flash fiction specially commissioned by USA Network and was inspired by the upcoming TV series event DIG.
Oak Ridge
Price: Free! Words: 10,790. Language: Canadian English. Published: February 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(1.00)
An unexplained phenomenon baffles the small town of Oak Ridge as several townspeople who were previously thought to be dead have suddenly returned. When others go missing, the town becomes divided as people blame the returned for the mysterious disappearances.
Prodigy Returns (book 3)
Price: $4.88 USD. Words: 64,120. Language: Canadian English. Published: February 6, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias
The highly anticipated third book in the cult-classic Prodigy trilogy!
Prodigy Eternal (Book 2)
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 57,280. Language: English. Published: December 14, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias
Sheathed in the undercurrent of Tokyo, Alexandra Gray has become close with a group of rogue hackers who offer her a chance to escape the burdens of fame as she struggles with being the symbol of hope for humanity.
The Secret Manuscript
Price: Free! Words: 65,430. Language: English. Published: July 21, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Action & suspense, Fiction » Science fiction » General
(1.00)
The Secret Manuscript is a riveting tale about a broken human spirit triumphing in the face of adversity, by any means necessary.
How to Write A Novel
Price: Free! Words: 16,440. Language: English. Published: January 9, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Publishing » Self-publishing
A quick and easy guide outlining my writing process from planning to execution. It includes chapters on writing tips, advice, examples, and lots more.
Illicit Behaviour
Price: Free! Words: 8,430. Language: English. Published: December 12, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Psychological thriller
An aspiring writer finds sudden inspiration for his latest project after watching a documentary on government corruption. After working tirelessly to complete the story, he becomes paranoid that his fiction tale may turn out to parallel his own life.
Prodigy
Price: Free! Words: 62,460. Language: English. Published: October 11, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » High tech
(5.00)
The highly anticipated second novel from Edward Mullen - author of The Art of the Hustle, and Destiny and Free Will.
Destiny and Free Will
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 29,550. Language: English. Published: March 12, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Philosophy » Free will & determinism
DESTINY AND FREE WILL is about the choices we make, the people we interact with, and the events that unfold in our lives. It explores the simple belief that everything happens for a reason and attempts to unravel some of the universe's grandest mysteries like: What is the meaning of life? Is there a God? and Why do certain events happen in my life?
Windfall
Price: Free! Words: 7,170. Language: English. Published: November 5, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Thriller and Suspense
(5.00)
A young couple who are down on their luck, come across a large sum of money. Just when they think all their problems have been solved, a new set of problems present themselves.
The Drowning of Scott McGee
Price: Free! Words: 1,200. Language: English. Published: November 2, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Action & suspense
(4.50)
Three friends experience tragedy on a camping trip. For years, Kevin and his friends had an annual tradition to go camping during the May long weekend at Shuswap Lake. But one year everything changed.
Beginner's Guide to Trading Stocks
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,560. Language: English. Published: September 9, 2012. Categories: Nonfiction » Business & Economics » Stock market investing
A clear and concise guide for any person wanting to gain an understanding into the world of online stock trading. You will learn the lingo, be shown examples, charts, strategies, commonly used websites, and more!
The Art of the Hustle
Price: Free! Words: 90,560. Language: English. Published: June 18, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » General
(4.00)
Edward Mullen's debut novel, The Art of the Hustle, available in print and ebook. A true underdog tale is told in The Art of the Hustle. Self-made billionaire, Trevor Morrison, recounts his life from being a poor kid from a small town to creating one of the largest companies in the world, all before his 30th birthday.