I primarily read two types of books. The first is non-fiction related to writing and publishing. I find these books by listening to different podcasts. The second type of book I read is Christian non-fiction. These are typically recommended to me by professors or pastors.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Haha not entirely. I know I used to be obsessed with fantasy worlds when I was growing up so I am positive my story was a combination of Final Fantasy and Lord of the Rings.
What is your writing process?
I start by outlining the entire book and how long I estimate each section to be. Next, I start doing research. Usually reading about half a dozen books on whatever subject or character I am writing about so I can really engage myself with the conversation happening about them. After that I finally start my writing - which is daily spurts, usually 45-90 minutes long. I can do 2-3 of those a day depending on my schedule. At that pace I usually finish a book in a month, take 2 weeks to edit, and then send it off to the next round of editors so I can start researching the next book
How do you approach cover design?
I love simple, minimalist designs. I want the typography to be the focal point and then whatever art that is included has to capture one of the main ideas. I usually use a lot of white in my designs as well.
When did you first start writing?
I remember entering a writing competition at the local library when I was in first grade. I didn't win, but I caught the bug. I wrote as a hobby (short stories, essays) until my senior year in high school. That's when I began to take writing seriously. I saw it as a way to work out ideas and communicate with people (since I was terrified of speaking). Over the years it has become an essential part of who I am.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
The freedom. I am an entrepreneur at heart. I love building things and having projects and seeing what I create make an impact on the real world. I also like to design and move quickly. Traditional publishing is a notoriously slow process, wherein much of what happens is out of your control. I wanted to have a say in what my books looked like, in how fast I could put them out into the world, and I wanted the freedom to go in any direction with my writing I wanted. The indie world is just beginning to explode and I am proud to be a part of this great community.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Writing an answer to a problem I am struggling with. Usually I don't know where I am going to end up when I start writing. I might have a topic or question in mind, and then I just follow the words as they lead. Sometimes they lead to something powerful that needed to be uncovered. It's a rare treat, but it's worth pumping out 2000 words to get that one perfect sentence.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I desperately want people to fall in love with scripture. That desire pushes me to help people in a couple ways. First, I help them not be intimidated by the Bible. It's big and confusing, but when you take it little by little you can start to see its beauty. Second, readers have to become comfortable with the stories. Reading the Bible is like going on a road trip. You won't know where you are the whole time, but as long as you can read a map you'll be able to make some sense of it. My writing acts as that map to help them navigate the Bible. Third, I point readers towards the rights tools. Commentaries, study Bibles, online courses - these are all great tools to help build someone's knowledge of Scripture and help fuel their love for it.
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