Some writers struggle for inspiration. Others procrastinate until their deadline, then push out brilliant work. There are authors who plot, plan, and predict their way to success. And there are those who fall somewhere in between, like I do.
Whatever they do, every writer is unique. That’s why I love hearing about what motivates a writer to do what they love and produce work that will survive beyond their own lifetime. It’s a story as old as language itself, and it holds a certain magic that even I can appreciate.
Today’s interviewee writes on the dark side of fantasy. He talks about female pirates, why he doesn’t do NaNoWriMo, and how to get all the book reviews you will ever need.
Welcome, Andy! Sell yourself to us.
I am, first and foremost, a storyteller and an artist – words are my palette.
Fantasy is my genre of choice, and I love to explore the darker side of human nature through the filter of fantasy heroes, villains, and everything in between. I’m also a freelance writer, a book lover, and a guy who just loves to meet new people and spend hours talking about my fascination for the worlds I encounter in the pages of fantasy novels.
Fantasy provides us with an escape, a way to forget about our mundane problems and step into worlds where anything is possible. It transcends age, gender, religion, race, or lifestyle – it is our way of believing what cannot be, delving into the unknowable, and discovering hidden truths about ourselves and our world in a brand-new way.
Fiction at its very best!
How many books have you published so far?
To date, I have three novels published (two with J. Ellington Ashton Press, and one with Dragonblade Publishing). I also have one self-published novel.
Are you faithful to one genre, or are you like me: multi-genre to a fault?
For now, I’m sticking with dark/grimdark fantasy.
However, I will eventually stray into the realm of more “epic” fantasy, and perhaps one day into sci-fi and steampunk. For the immediate future (next 2-5 years), I have no plans to leave dark fantasy.
Are you indie or traditionally published?
I’m indie published.
I went with an indie publisher because I found one I could trust. I spent a lot of time querying publishers and agents to no avail. When I came across a publisher who offered me a lot of useful advice on the world of marketing and publishing, I thought, “Well, here’s someone who knows what they’re doing!”
I pitched the book to them, they loved it, and here we are!
Have you ever competed in NaNoWriMo?
I’m not the kind of person who needs incentive to write. I love writing, and I’m very self-driven. I’ve never needed to participate in NaNoWriMo because I’m always in the middle of some project.
What is your writing hideout?
My office desk is a gorgeous writing hideout. I put on my noise canceling headphones, turn on my music, and dive into my computer screen.
Some days are easier to get distracted than others, but for the most part it’s easy to stay focused.
What fuels your writing?
I’m a creative person by nature, so I love challenging myself to find new and creative ways to tell stories. I always love a good coffee and cash is the motivator that drives me to be a better marketer, but the love of a great story is what makes me want to be an author.
Tell us what inspired your Queen of Thieves book.
I read an article that talked about how female pirates had to be harder, crueler, and more ruthless than their male counterparts in order to survive in a male-dominated world.
I wanted to tell a story like that, set in a fantasy world. The Queen of Thieves series follows this thief girl (Ilanna) as she is first molded into a thief, comes into her own, then finds everything she knows threatened and destroyed.
What are you working on right now?
I’m currently racing the clock to finish the third book in the Queen of Thieves series, titled Queen of the Night Guild.
The second book in the series is currently in the red pen-wielding hands of my beta readers, so I’m churning ahead with Book 3 while they have their way with Book 2.
Do you intend to write more books in your The Last Bucelarii series?
The Last Bucelarii will be six books in total. Book 3 is set to launch on March 31st, and I hope to complete Book 4 for publishing by December 2017. The series will delve into more details on the history of the Abiarazi (demons), the Bucelarii (half-demons), Serenii (ancient lost race), and the gods. It’s going to be one heck of an epic ride!
You have been blogging since 2014. What are the top three things you have learned about blogging since you started?
- Never stop. Regular content is a key to increasing traffic.
- Find your interests and share them. Keyword-heavy articles are okay for some people, but as a writer, it’s the passion that makes people interested.
- A bit at a time. I have HUNDREDS of articles posted on my blog, just like I have hundreds of thousands of words written. They were all written one day at a time.
Your website mentions that you offer your writing as a service. What kinds of projects do you handle?
I handle blog posts, long-form articles, press releases, website pages, e-books, manuals, how-to guides, and more. Pretty much everything!
If you could give one piece of advice to authors who are looking for book reviews, what would it be?
The secret to getting more book reviews is just to keep asking. There are literally THOUSANDS of websites run by book reviewers. You’re bound to find more than a few who are willing to read your book. It will take time and effort, but it’s worth it.
It’s why I created the Ultimate Guide to Book Review Websites and Blogs—a list of 501 sites that review books (organized by genre). I wanted all the information in one place, so it made sense to create a list I could share with others.
Where can we find you?