In today's guest author interview we meet Stephen Whaley, you can read what he has to say below:
Please introduce yourself, who are you and what do you do?
My name is Stephen Whaley, and I live in Fes, Morocco. I work at a small American private school, taking care of I.T. and teaching the occasional course. I’m working on my MBA as well. This is my first novel, but I’ve written other things in the past.
What first inspired you to start writing?
I had a really great idea for a book that just wouldn’t get out of my head. I finally gave up and started writing it. I’ve always loved reading and writing however, so I guess you could say it’s something I find enjoyable.
And what was your first story?
My first real stories (post college) were backstories for Dungeons and Dragons characters. Before that, I mostly wrote assignments for school and the occasional poem or spoof. For example, in my freshman year of college I wrote a song called “Ramen time”.
Are you a planner? Or do you prefer to dive straight into writing?
I liked to at least know where I’m going before I start. So, I usually plan the beginning and the end, and let the middle fend for itself. What is love about that is that it gives me the flexibility to go where I want with a story, but the end anchors me to my goal. I know where I want the writing to take me, but I’m ok with the scenic route.
If you could write anybody's biography, whose would it be?
Benjamin Franklin, perhaps. His own autobiography stops well short of the Revolutionary War, and he’s one of the very few American polymaths.
What do you enjoy most about writing?
I love being able to describe something that’s inside my head to others. I enjoy making them laugh at the foibles of my characters, but even more I love helping them to enter into the imaginary world I’ve created by snippets of history or random details.
And the least?
Proof reading. I’d rather be moving on to something new rather than trying to figure out if the word “moon” should be capitalized.
What advice would you give new and aspiring authors?
The writing process is important, but find someone can help you with promotion and marketing. Don’t expect your first book to catch the world on fire without you getting your name out there. Don’t be afraid of criticism. I know that I’m deathly afraid that people will laugh at my work.
Another thing is to make some friends who are into writing. You can find me online at Goodreads, and I have several real life friends who are into writing as well.
What are you working on at the moment?
Right now I’m working on marketing my first full length novel, Mind Ambition. After that launches, I’m planning to write an adventure novel set in Fes about a veterinary student who gets caught up in an assassination plot. Unless I sell like 100,000 copies, then I’ll move straight into a sequel for Mind Ambition.
Tell us about your latest work and how we can find out more.
Mind Ambition is a science fiction novel that’s not too heavy on the science fiction and tries to balance action, plot, and character development. The main character is a washed up space pilot who turns to gaming (in an online space simulator, of course) so that he can still do what he loves. He is recruited by the military and selected to fly a top secret mission to stop an evil A.I. from causing a war between the Earth and the space colonies.
You can read more for free at Amazon.com or Barnesandnoble.com, and also check out the book’s Facebook page.
Thanks to Stephen for sharing his thoughts with us, on Friday we welcome Luke Goldstein to the hot seat.