Here are the answers to questions I am frequently asked. If you would like to ask me a question about myself, my writing or this website please contact me via the details on the Contact Me tab.
Where do you get your ideas from?
Anywhere and everywhere. Sometimes I’ll get a fragment of an idea and slowly work it into something. Sometimes ideas just pop into my head fully formed. There’s no telling what triggered the idea, sometimes I don’t even know how long I have been harbouring an idea, it just happens.
Are any of your characters based on real people?
I have been inspired by real people and used them as a basis characters but I never pluck someone from the real world and plant them in my work. I always change the characters’ names and replaced some of their characteristics so they’re unrecognisable.
What about events you’ve witnessed or heard about?
I’ve heard several tales from friends and transcribed them into stories of my own. I always add my own elements and my own twists. I also find inspiration in historical events, unsolved mysteries and What If stories.
Why do you write?
Because I enjoy it. I like creating new worlds and telling stories. I like the satisfaction of completing a piece of work. I like the power of changing someone’s thoughts and feelings with written words. Someone once said that being a writer is like being a bully on a school playground. I just want a reaction. It doesn’t matter if my words make you smile, make you laugh, my you cry or make you think. I just want a reaction. I don’t think I have much of a choice in being a writer. If I was unable to write I’m pretty sure I would go mad!
Why do you write what you write?
Same reason as the above. Because I enjoy it and because I don’t think I have a choice. I’ve always been drawn to fantasy in particular, I love the magical elements and I think we can always find something to relate to in a fantasy world.
How do you deal with Writer’s Block?
I take a break. I watch a film, I read a book, I go for a walk… I do anything away from my computer screen. When I return to my work with fresh eyes I can normally solve the problem.
What is your typical writer’s day?
I try to write everyday but sometimes work and family commitments forbid me from doing so. If I’m stuck on the train to work I’ll write some notes on my phone, I’ll scribble down a paragraph or two on my lunch break, if I find myself home alone for an hour I’ll normally be writing. I find I write best in twenty-minute bursts. Write for twenty minutes, then a five minute break where I make a cup of tea, watch a Youtube video, procrastinate and then return to my writing,
What is your process of writing a novel?
The first thing I do is complete draft zero. The point of this is just to get the words on the page so that I can edit them later. Sometimes the sentences aren’t finished and sometimes the paragraphs and chapters are in the wrong order. That doesn’t matter at this point, its draft zero, it does not deserve a number. In draft one I put everything in the right order so that the manuscript is legible. In future drafts normally print off the manuscript, read through it, edit with a red pen and add my notes digitally. I’m normally satisfied with a piece after I’ve completed around five drafts.
What is your process of writing a short story?
This process is similar to the above but on a smaller scale. I complete a first draft and then return in a few days to complete a second draft. I continue in this fashion until the story is ready for submission. Then I look for somewhere to submit to.
What do you write?
In terms of which medium I write in, the answers are: novels, novellas, short stories, flash fiction, micro-fiction and screenplays. Occasionally I’ll pitch an article for a magazine. As for what genre I write Fantasy, Sci fi, Horrors, Thrillers and Historical.