Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I am a writer and illustrator, cartoonist. I've written children's books in the past, and have also written some adult fiction, as well as fantasy, and sci fi. I had several children's books printed up when I was younger, though nothing published up until now. I love to draw cartoons. My walls of my office where I am presently living are filled to bursting with sketches and style guides, and colour indicator charts showing most of the many strange and wonderful characters I've created recently. Most of these worlds and characters I intend to write about in future books and novels. It is a huge passion of mine.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest indie title is called Skylantern Dragon and the Monsters of Mundor. The main protagonist is gay or at least, at the moment, has what could be described as leanings, although he is barely aware of this until he comes into contact with the beautiful Tor Vallor, an envoy of the great and powerful Synistrom Empire. Fabian, the protagonist, also has an overbearing, and cruel brute for a father. His father is the king of Mundor, and he resents his only son, thinking him to be weak and abhorrent. I wanted to create a dynamic somewhat similar to the dynamic J.R.R Tolkien wrote about in LOTR. I found the relationship between Faramir and his father rather interesting. Plus I started with this question and premise: what would happen if one of our royal family all of a sudden came out in the public eye as being gay? How would people react? It would be interesting to see the mixture of responses.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I do tend to go off on a tangent. When I am writing about a character’s thoughts I can wind up filling page after page with prose, and waffle on a bit LOL. Good that I can actually edit and trim later on once the project is completed. But I save the original (unedited) copies and file them on my computer for future reference if necessary.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
I have been a big fan of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. Love her prose. Love the descriptions of places she has written about, and the characters that populate her books. I have also enjoyed reading Henry Miller simply for his liberating prose. The way he can make the reader feel ambivalent is astonishing! He can free you with his honest words and, at the same instance, can make you feel frustrated and enamoured, so frustrated because it is at once difficult to relay to other people around you what an influence he, Henry, has had on you. The first title of his that I read was the Air-Conditioned Nightmare, and his honesty blew me away! I had to order the book from the library as none of the shops in my town seemed to stock his work (no surprise there). Would that all books followed Henry's example. His Tropic of Cancer was like a dream dreamt on page, in ink. Forget beginning, middle and end, this is how honest books should be written, though sadly if they were written this way no one would damn well bother buying them, much less read them LOL.
What are you working on now?
I have several projects in mind. I have several short children's stories and novels. Some of the ideas I've had sprang up during my recent trip to Manilla, in the Philippines. I decided on a group of unlikely superheroes, or mythological anti heroes that go by the name of "Diwata: The Legacy." I also have ideas for a range of short illustrated books for kids about three boys who accidentally wash a book of monsters in a launderette and end up turning one of the spin cycles into a doorway to another world where all these monsters live. Already designed the visuals of these characters. They're hanging on my wall now as a matter of fact. Also, I am working on another novel titled, The Millennial about an old man who is given the chance to go back in time to save his love from committing suicide. I've even considered doing a graphic novel in addition to all this. Yeah, so you can say I'm busy.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
So far, I tend to get more responses using Facebook and Instagram, but these platforms are the most popular. So no surprise there. I have made myself member of tons of Facebook groups: blogger's groups, even groups that are heavily into 80's cartoons. Masters of the Universe, Thundercats, Transformers, you name it, if there's a group for it I'm likely in it. It helps to show off my artwork to people who are into that stuff, plus I can use it to promote work that I've created out of my own imagination. It hasn't succeeded in pushing sales yet sadly, but I keep trying. I've just signed up for a Deviantart account. So I'll see where things develop there. And Twitter, Pinterest are also utilised. I also need to look at developing my own website, when I have a moment.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Not really. All I can say is, just stick at it. Never say die! We are blessed with living in an age of social media and the internet. Although this doesn't in any way make it easier to sell books, it does get you noticed. And that's a start. In truth, I'm only starting out, and worthwhile things take time to develop, even finding potential readers.
As for advice in writing, I would say have fun with it. Be tangential. Be creative. Forget the rules. Waffle on in your prose as much as you want. You can always edit later.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Escape. Don't let fear hold you back.
What are you reading now?
To be truthfully honest, I can't say I'm reading anything at the moment. I used to read a lot. But I just can't seem to find any time for it these days.
What’s next for you as a writer?
Well I think I shall finish The Millennial, the novel I spoke about in one of the previous questions. Already completed a huge chunk of it. I just need to dot the I's and cross the T's so to speak.
What is your favorite book of all time?
I can't really say I have a favourite. I can say however that I am indebted to the titles that have opened my eyes over the years.
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