Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Well, I’ve been writing for a very long time now. I started when I was 12. I was a very loyal reader to R.L. Stine’s work. Eventually my interests grew into Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, John Grisham, Jack Kerouac. They were my earliest influences in the writing I did when I was younger. They still are today.
I went to college and decided that I really didn’t want to be there anymore so I quit and started writing even more. In the meantime I started working full time.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
American Masquerade Party is the newest book I’ve written. It’s a collection of 12 stories spanning into different genres. It took nearly ten years to write because I wrote those stories in between other books that I was writing at the time.
As far the inspiration, there wasn’t one directly. Each story has it’s own unique inspiration I guess you could say. I touch on that before each story in the book. I always think it’s neat to find out what inspired the author to write such a story and I wanted to include that in American Masquerade Party.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I like to listen to music a lot when I write. If I get to one scene in particular where I need a lot of emotion, I’ll dig around in my music files and find a song that fits into what I’m writing at the time. It makes the writing, at least for me, that much more emotional having that soundtrack.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
R.L. Stine, Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, Jack Kerouac, John Grisham. They really set the foundations to my writing especially when I was young. I still read those authors today because they teach lessons within their work. It seems that I’m always learning something new when I read them.
What are you working on now?
Right now I pulled all my books off the shelves. Me and my new editor are going through them in the near future and I’m including the material that was cut from them by the previous editors. I wasn’t happy with the finished products then because it didn’t seem that my voice was even present in those books by the time the editing was done.
So, my new editor and I are going back through them and I plan to re-release them later this year and into next. Possibly a new short story collection on the way in late 2017, but I haven’t decided yet.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Best method? Probably good ol fashioned word of mouth. Of course I use my own website, twitter, google plus, etc. I think reaching out to prospective readers is very easy today with the tools available. But the only problem with that is so many people are doing it and there’s an ocean of writers, musicians, etc. out there trying to get noticed.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Just write and read a lot. The more you read the better you become. But just don’t read one writer. Read a bunch because each writer does something different than the other. And always be looking for lessons when you read on how to form words, descriptions, flow, etc.
Always control your content.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Listen to the critics because sometimes they’re right. Not always but at least listen.
What are you reading now?
Stephen King’s, Bazzar of Bad Dreams. Great collection of stories.
What’s next for you as a writer?
Working on re-releasing my previous works with a new editor and adding content that was originally cut out.
What is your favorite book of all time?
God, it’d have to be the Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams. That book really did a number on me growing up. I can’t read it even today because it’s a sad book for me. But it’s my favorite at the same time.
Author Websites and Profiles
Matthew McConkey Website
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