Interview with Merrill Gemus

Published 2017-02-06.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Oh, that's a tough one! I don't think I have a preference but I did purchase two Kobo e-readers, first generation and the Kobo Glo, but I've started re-reading physical books. I like taking advantage of book sales and participating in book exchanges at work. I did have a small fascination with the Kindle at some point and I've read books on my mobile phone and tablets.
When did you first start writing?
Pretty much around 8 years old, I started writing in my diary. I began writing short stories in 2005 and basically wrote my first novella, Bitten, in 2011.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I've always loved to write and tell wild stories to my younger sister since I was a child. But thanks to today's web platforms and technologies, I am able to share those stories to a bigger audience. When I downloaded an old ebook app that could connect to Smashwords, I became quickly aware that there was a world of indie writers sharing their work and ideas. That was extremely inspiring to me!

I, therefore, started reading up on self-publishing and the rest is history!
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
It gave me tremendous exposure!

I might sound cheap for saying this, but Smashwords allowed me to publish my books in Apple's iBookstore without me having to buy an iMac. Saved me some cash!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Bringing life to characters and a universe that was non-existent, and sharing the challenges and triumphs of my characters to readers, who I've never met in real life. I find that this type of connection with my audience to be pretty cool.
What are you working on next?
I'm planning on writing a spin off of Bitten with Gabriel and Trish. I'm also mulling with an idea for a children's book.
Who are your favorite authors?
Stephen King, especially after reading The Dark Towers series.
Sharon Kay Penman, Here Be Dragons is still one of my favorites.
Lois Lowry, The Giver was one of those books that impacted me as a child.
J.K. Rowling, the imaginary world of Harry Potter is magic in itself. Beautiful person in real life, too.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My fans; I am very apologetic for how long it has taken me to finish Book 3. I'm currently wrapping up chapter 6, and have 7 more to complete based on my outline. I've received so many emails from fans expressing their love for the series and have been waiting for the third installment.

It's getting done. I will try to finish it as quickly as possible.

Again, my apologies to the fans! It does encourage me to finish when I get your emails.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, I remember a story I wrote in grade one. It was about an alien ooze that became my pet. We had a few adventures together and at one point, I wake up and believe the saga was all a dream. Little did I know, pet ooze was hiding under the bed.

Silly, eh? But that was it, and I even made a cover for it! I still have it somewhere in my house...
What do your fans mean to you?
A lot, and I feel the need to apologize for my absence and not finishing book 3. I plan on giving a proper explanation in the future but for now, I'm very focused on completing book 3 of the Bitten series. My outline is complete and I just wrapped up chapter 6.

Without the many fans who reached out and encouraged me to finished Unbroken, I'm not sure if I would have bothered. It's hearing how my stories have entertained so many of you that got me working overtime to complete it.

I sincerely thank each and every one of you that took the time to write to me. It still means alot. Thank you.
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