Interview with Neil Platten

Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I don't actually remember the first story I ever read but as a small child I had a fairly large collection of Little Golden Books. As I got older, my book case evolved and today is a collection of a number of different genres. From a very young age I was encouraged to read for the pleasure of it which is how my enjoyment of reading survived school when so many others didn't!
How do you approach cover design?
My approach so far has been to come up with concepts then show them to random people to see how they respond. Importantly, I check to make sure that the idea conveys the right concept and they associate it with what I am writing about.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
One favourite is River God by Wilbur Smith. I have always enjoyed the swashbuckling adventure of his books but with River God I get that and an adventure set in ancient Egypt which is something I am fascinated by. I love Egyptian history.
Another is Power of One by Bryce Courtney. It was a captivating book and I could not put it down. It was an absolutely brilliant read and a beautifully told story.
I am going to have to put down a series next and say the Harry Potter books by JK Rowling. The amusing part of this is that I went out of my way to avoid them initially because of all the hype. When I did finally relent I discovered a range of books that were written in such a way that they appealed to a very wide audience. Seriously, wouldn't it be cool to wake up one morning to discover you are a wizard?
One book I draw a lot of motivation from is Failure is not an option by Gene Krantz. Reading about how mission control dealt with the Apollo 13 disaster was fascinating and the lessons learned are just as applicable today as they were back then.
The last one I am going to list is Magicians Guild by Trudi Canavan. Her debut series was a great read and this book was a captivating finale that I never get sick of reading.
What do you read for pleasure?
This will depend on what frame of mind I am in. It will vary from action or adventure to fantasy to autobiographical. I was recently reading a transcript of the Dead Sea Scrolls (which can be tough going by the way) and decided to switch to Christian Jacq instead. I often rummage through the discount bins to find someone new to read.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My first, and only, e-reader is a kobo. So far it has been fantastic and it is much easier to use than an iPad and definitely much lighter to hold than a real book. I like the fact that it will accept a number of formats and not just the one like, say, a kindle.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
This one is a work in progress and the jury is still out! I am slowly getting the word out so, right now, I think it is a combined effort for the different methods I have used. No one method has risen to the top in terms of effectiveness.
Describe your desk
lol, I am the author of a time management book so my desk had better be organised! In fact, my desk has five things on it, other than my computer. It's got a calendar, an industry journal, a notepad, a coffee cup and a box of tissues.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small country town in North East Victoria, Australia. Being able to go down to the creek to catch tadpoles, or go to the river to swim were things I took for granted. Having a lot of space to play in was great for an active imagination like mine. As for influence, only in so far as creating my own world to play in which encouraged creativity.
When did you first start writing?
I have been trying to write my first book since I was a teenager but have only recently been successful!
What's the story behind your latest book?
I have two new books in the planning stage which, like my first book, are designed to help people and to answer their questions.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Effectiveness and reach. That and the fact that today you don't need to go through a traditional publisher to get your story out there. This is far better suited to reaching a wide audience and you aren't competing for shelf space or getting lost in sales figures.
Published 2014-12-20.
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Books by This Author

What time is it?!
Price: $17.00 USD. Words: 10,310. Language: English. Published: December 16, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Business & Economics » Time management
What time is it helps improve your work day with simple and effective steps to organising your work. Clear, easy to follow instructions will have you doing things better in no time and have you leave the office on time. Work smarter not harder and enjoy the rewards these tips can bring.