Good morning, everyone. I’m doing a total of three posts on WiSpY this month. Today Rob has stopped by to answer a few questions for us! Don’t forget to check out Rob’s earlier Guest Post and Excerpt!
Author: Rob Andrews
Publisher: Dam Good Publishing
Release: December 10th 2011
Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Sci-fi, Y/A
Source: Enchanting Book Tours
Buy: Amazon ♦ B&N ♦ Smashwords
A young blogger has the ultimate on-line encounter; a spirit partner who introduces him to a world he must master to save his own. A ghost in the machine?
Adam is a 19 year old blogger who lives in his mother’s basement and who is dealing with a critically ill friend. A simple reply to a blog fan e-mail begins a relationship with Pretoria, a beautiful and mysterious young woman. Pretoria guides him into ‘the Realm’, a spirit world where he discovers he is a powerful force for the protection and survival of human kind. As Pretoria reintroduces Adam to the Realm and his place in it, he realizes that she is not only trying to reclaim him for the sake of humanity, but also for the spirit world and herself. Facing a powerful evil , Adam re-engages with the Realm in order to save his friend and the human world while re-discovering why he had tried to escape it in the first place. As a battle within the Realm reaches its climax, Adam must finally choose between his human and his spirit form, or lose both.
Where were you born and where do you call home?
Born, raised and still live in Ontario, Canada. I have moved 38 times in my life, so home is a temporary concept J
What or who inspired you to write? And how long have you been writing?
I love to tell a good story and the writing process itself is all the inspiration I need. I have been writing since I was old enough to grasp the concept and I haven’t met the scope yet that was too grand for my consideration!
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I guess I first considered myself a writer in 8th grade when a novel I wrote with a classmate was the subject of our English class June book review!
What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 30 or less words, what would you say?
WiSpY is my most recent published book and in thirty words or less it is a paranormal journey of romance and self discovery where a 19 year old discovers he is so not who he thought he was.
I love reading the warnings on the blurbs for many books. If you could write a warning label for yourself as a person or an author, what would it say?
Warning: Unbridled imagination – handle with extreme caution!
If you gave some of your characters an opportunity to speak for themselves, what would they say?
I do that every time I write. They have a tendency to say exactly what they like all the time – I just eavesdrop on the conversation and put it down so you can hear it too.
What does your protagonist think about you? Would he or she want to hang out with you, the author?
Adam would not be enthralled with me, except that I write. In his real form, I wouldn’t be worth a passing thought and hanging out would have no meaning for him whatsoever.
Which character speaks the loudest, to you? Do any of them clamour to be heard over the others?
Adam was by far the voice of the story. Caith clamoured pretty hard and Pretoria will make sure you hear her, whether you know it yet or not…
Do your characters try to make like bunnies and create ever more convoluted plots for you? Or do you have to coax them out of your characters?
Bunnies – GREAT BIG Bunnies. Sometimes I just strap in and enjoy the ride J
Have you based any of your characters on someone you know, or real events in your own life?
Yes and no. There are people represented in name or personality throughout the full range of characters and that goes beyond the standard we write what we know stuff here.
Do you have a specific writing style?
I don’t think I do. Various web tools for comparing style to the published greats seem to agree – I will be compared to one writer when I use one story and another when I pick a different one. While I tend to have consistencies in my writing within a book, my style seems to vary between books.
How did you come up with the title?
WiSpY is a ghost reference. The story began in concept as something completely different with a working title of “Ghostworld”. Everything changed once writing began and Pretoria’s email addy seemed the best name for the book.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
More than one, but a key is to stay open minded about the possibilities that surround you and the explanations for things.
Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
Always! There could be a prequel and sequel to WiSpY, but I finished two other books (a separate series) after I wrote WiSpY and have started on a massive Young Adult series that will cover fourteen stories!
How did you come up with the title and cover design?
Title was done and the design was the brainchild of my Publisher, Dam Good Books.
Where do you see yourself in five (5) years?
Probably devoting a great deal of time to my writing; if I told you my dream it wouldn’t come true J
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Wherever I am – because if I really wanted to be somewhere else, I should have been doing something to get me there. Seriously, I love where I live. Canada is a fabulous country and I am both happy and proud to call it my home.
Is there an Author that you would really like to meet?
I have already met some very good ones, but the two I most would have enjoyed meeting I think are deceased, so that pretty much puts that out of the question. I think Isaac Asimov and J.R.R. Tolkein would have been very cool people to meet.
What books have most influenced your writing most and why?
It sounds odd, but I intentionally try not to read while I am writing because I don’t want anyone else to influence my style or content. Comparisons are inevitable but they vary so much and so often include authors I don’t know that I think I have achieved this!
Do you prefer ebooks, paperbacks or hardcover?
I like e-books because of the immediate access to whatever you want. I do prefer to hold a book when I read it, but I want everyone to go order WiSpY right now, so e-books again are my favourite for that reason 😀
Are you a self published (Indie) Author or big trad published?
I was published by a small indie (DG Books)
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
More books, varied genres. It takes awesome people like your readers to create a demand and brave publishers like DG to take the chance.
How do you market/promote your books?
Like this J
Cheeky aren’t ‘cha, lol
What do you think makes a book a really good/bestseller ?
A buzz. I didn’t know what a Harry Potter was until she had finished book 4. I didn’t know about Hunger Games until I saw the movie. What makes something go viral? I am sure Malcolm Gladwell could tell you …hmmm, maybe I should invite him to read my book?
Have you ever suffered from a “writer’s block”? What did you do to get past the “block”?
I don’t think I do. When I sit down to write, it pretty much flows out of me. However, I don’t always decide to sit down and write. I have to be in a certain head space to take the time and sit. But once I’m there – the well is full and the stories flow. Read the book to see what I mean, because Adam talks about writing (he’s a blogger) and blocking …
What was your favourite chapter (or part) to write and why?
Dialogue is always my favourite. It is usually what readers like best too. It is a magical little dance that occurs in my head and when it is funny it is the best stuff to write. Embarrassingly, I have actually made myself laugh when I re-read something some time after I wrote it. Then I usually recall how much fun I had writing it in the first place. I think the early scenes with Adam and Pretoria and Adam and the hospital scenes with Tony were the most fun. The fight scene near the end with Adam in a small woman’s body and the dreaded Aqualung was also enjoyable. When I write the story plays out like a movie in my head, so writing is like going to the cinema 🙂
What has been the toughest criticism you’ve been given as an author?
The toughest is when someone doesn’t like an essential element or suggests changing something that would completely change the intent or direction of the story. I am notoriously dismissive of criticisms I think will ruin my work J
Good for you!
What has been the best compliment?
A well known fantasy writer read one of my other books and said I was easily capable of being published; that I reminded him of Mike Resnick (yeah, who I thought?) and that he loved my characters and dialogue. That was pretty cool because this is a man who earns a very good living from writing. He wasn’t just being kind either.
That’s pretty cool praise.
What do you do to unwind and relax?
I read, watch video, play music, or sleep!
Have you ever read a book more than once?
Is there a particular movie that you preferred over the book version?
No. The Lord of the Rings met my (very high) expectations however and that is saying quite a bit – I have read the trilogy and the Hobbit at least 5 times and had very strong visual associations that the film captured beautifully.
What book are you currently reading and in what format (ebook/ paperback/ hardcover)?
A ton of unpublished work from Authonomy as part of a contest I am running there and “The Host” by Stephanie Meyer. I am one of seven writers on the planet who thinks there is a reason she is so absurdly popular and doesn’t spend a lot of energy denigrating her work!
Well, I make eight then. Are there any new Authors that have seized your interest and why?
All the unpublished ones I read on Authonomy and think – “This is better than the last 5 books I bought!” I could give you names …
Love reading and getting feedback on there.
Is there anything you would change in your last book and why?
Yes – I need to make a stronger through line because I wrote it as a series of vignettes within a plan and then threaded them later. Most readers pick up on this and comment. Luckily it isn’t yet published!
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Read. Listen to what people tell you about your book. Stay true to what you were thinking when you undertook to write in the first place.
What is the best advice that you have ever been given when it comes to writing?
Everything Stephen King put into “On Writing”
Do you write under a pen name?
No, not for WiSpY, but if I were to publish some of my other writing I would!
What are your pet peeves?
Unthinking or intentionally hurtful people annoy me like little else.
Cats or dogs?
Either and Neither
White wine or red?
Red, but I currently don’t drink wine!
Coffee or tea?
Vanilla or chocolate ice cream?
Chocolate but if I can pick SKOR, that is officially the best I have ever eaten. Anything with caramel makes my day.
Skor has Chocolate in it, right? It counts, LOL.
What are 4 things you never leave home without?
My sense of humour
An inquisitive view of what’s around me
Something on my mind
Laptop or desktop for writing?
Where and when do you prefer to do your writing?
Right there looks good…
If you were deserted on an island, who are 3 famous people you would want with you?
Oh lordy, they have to be famous?
Alright; Keith Richards, Rachel Welch and J.R.R. Tolkein; we’d have a blast.
One of your favourite quotes –
There may be no “I” in team, but there’s no “U” either. I actually made that up…
List 3 of your all time favourite books?
Lord of the Rings
Anything by George MacDonald Fraser
List 3 of your all time favourite movies?
The Princess Bride
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
This is Spinal Tap
I love The Princess Bride!
An actor you have a crush on –
I’m not the crushing type, but Rachel Welch works for me
What is a movie or TV show that you watched recently and really enjoyed?
I actually liked John Carter – I suspect the book was awesome in its day, not having read it. I love Dexter (no, I don’t identify with him) because I think the writing is superb and the story lines are well imagined.
I am a Canadian writer who has been creating stories and alternate realities since I was old enough to hold a pencil. My brother and I wrote illustrated pirate books, rocket and helicopter manuals and expansive world based adventures even as children. My first full length novel was penned with a classmate in my eighth grade English class as a special project! I would like to think that my writing has improved dramatically since those days and now at nearly the half century mark of this remarkable journey of life, I have had my first novel published. So what about me? Well, I have three kids and two cats currently; I work in the field of Education and wanted to try the challenge of writing young adult fiction after working through so much of it with my two daughters and my son. Writing is a fabulous activity, a magical journey where the story and character ideas often take on a life of their own as they dance together. I have other full length manuscripts completed but for now, they stay safely in the vault for my retirement! I love reading any good fiction writing with a compelling plot.