Interview with Joe Hepworth

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I rewrote the Three Musketeers so they were archers-because bows are cool-with fire arrows. I was seven.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I mostly read upon the recommendations of friends or people I respect. That having been said, I also read some from the Chief of Staff of the Army's recommended reading list, but I'm not close friends with him.
What is your writing process?
I have a notepad filled with scribbled ideas. After about 4-6 months, those ideas get transferred to a decision matrix so I can weigh whether I would like to read about the idea myself. If so, is there a market for the idea? Once I'm convinced the story concept is viable, I make an outline based on the theme of the book and the proposed length. I revise and proof as I go so it's not a gigantic task at the end. Then I have a reader go through it blind and make some suggestions based on their overall impressions.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story that really fired me up wasn't much of a story at all. I had this Lego set of Robin Hood in the forest, and I made my granddad read the set's description over and over and over. It was so vague but it just had so many possibilities contained in the set with the description; I would sit and stare at it for hours with the stories tumbling through my head.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I had a notion for a book that I wished had been available when I was a kid, as a teenager, and again in my twenties. So after sitting on my behind a year after I got home from Afghanistan, I took some of my copious spare time and started plugging away.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Oh, each and every day is a gift to be spent as best as you can with the time and resources available. I've come close to death so many times that I am just happy to be alive when I wake up.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I enjoy playing the Batman: Arkham series and Assassin's Creed series for video games; I read an eclectic mix of books and ebooks; and I train my body to do awesome things. Things like running for an hour, or climbing a tree with just my arms to pull me up the branches.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up mostly in Bangladesh in a missionary/expatriate community deep in the jungles; separated from the rest of the world and the internet. So my parents had walls and walls of shelves of books to read; and I had access to a great variety for a library. I loved fantasy and science fiction most of all, which is why that's my preferred genre of choice.
Describe your desk
It is a faux-cherry desk with drawers on either side. On it is a pen/pencil holder; a lamp facing the wall, and a set of captain's rank resting on the lamp. I tend to keep it clear when I'm working on a project so my mind is more focused.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing when I was seven, with my rewrite of the Three Musketeers as archers. The Three Bowaneers, I called it.
Published 2015-07-07.
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