Interview with James Brittain

Who are your favorite authors?
There are a lot. I just read The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot and really liked all of it except the bits with Stephen in them. My favourite fantasy writers are Gene Wolfe and Steven Brust, and of course Roger Zelazny. I'm a sucker for excess, so I love writers like Barth, Faulkner and Joyce. The Fairie Queene by Spenser is also a favourite, although I've never yet made it all the way through all six books.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Nothing, but I have to get up to get my daughter to school. I'm not a morning person at all.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I spend a lot of time editing my films. They take me forever to finish because of how complicated the editing gets. I also spend a lot of time with my daughter, almost 5. I'm looking forwards to when she's a little older so we can play better games.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
When I was in fifth or sixth grade I wrote a story about a princess who was captured by a dragon and fought her way out. I don't remember too much of it. I wrote a couple of novellas in high school, then switched to poetry. That's where I actually learned to write. I joined an online critique forum and posted a few poems and wrote a lot of critiques.
What is your writing process?
I have a little journal I keep with me all the time. I do most of my writing on breaks at my job, which is at a book store. I'll write directly into a computer sometimes, but find that I'm more thoughtful and thorough when I go slow and hand write everything.
How do you approach cover design?
Well for my first book I just hired someone and let her do whatever she wanted. I have a pretty strong grasp of composition from my film work, but I find the process tedious. Plus what I like isn't always or even often what sells well.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I still have my old kobo, the one with wifi but without a touch screen. I tend not to upgrade until things break. I prefer the e-ink screen to tablets. I also read on my computer. When my daughter was an infant she wanted to be bounced constantly, so I would put books on the computer with huge font and read as I stood and bounced her for hours.
Describe your desk
I have two monitors and my laptop, and not much else. I have a table next to it with a record player and my dad's old receiver. I never actually listen to records though, nobody else in the house is into Sun Ra or Emperor.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
It's like reading a book, but you can make sure nothing sucks. Really, I like the discovery of what's going to happen, and I like balancing everything I'm trying to convey all the time. Which is typically too much, I tend to overdo it.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
It's all about doing everything you can think of. I'm not really extroverted enough for social media, but I try. For my films I've had good luck with real world advertising too. Making up business cards or fliers and handing them out at conventions or festivals.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
My ideas don't often fit into the culture very well. By being indie I don't have to worry about gatekeepers, I can just do what I want without worrying about how well it's going to sell or not.
Published 2015-03-19.
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Books by This Author

A Slave of Evil
Price: Free! Words: 75,970. Language: English. Published: March 18, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Dark, Fiction » Horror » Weird fiction
Born a slave, Kara was raised to obey her master's every whim as divine will. But when her master dies in a strange kingdom, she is enthralled by a demon. Compelled to commit horrendous crimes in the name of evil, she is eventually given a task she cannot do, murder an infant. And so confused and uncertain of who she is without a master's will, she must flee into a strange unfriendly world.