When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
Age fifteen. I’d been imagining awesome worlds and epic stories for my entire life, but it wasn’t until fifteen that I figured out the best way to channel my imagination was to write. I tried art at first, but that never took. I didn’t have the patience or the mind for it. So I tried my hand at writing, and lo and behold, that worked out a lot better.
How long does it take you to write a book?
4-6 months for a full-length novel, usually. Depends on the complexity of the plot and how much other work I’m juggling.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I “become” all my protagonists and frequently talk out loud while acting like them, as I try to get their voices and dialogue just write.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Read. I have about 300 books sitting on my shelves and Kindle, waiting for me. I also blog, mostly about reading and writing.
Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I hear from my fans—obviously, they all say nice things. They like my action scenes and abundant sarcasm. Don’t know much about those who don’t like my books.
What other fiction influences your work?
Hard question. Um…all of it? Everything I read influences in me in some way. Thrillers show me how to write action sequences. Other science fiction books inspire plot ideas and world building techniques. Various genres show me various other things, from characterization to pacing to how to write relationships.
In terms of thematic influence, well, every piece of sci-fi I’ve ever gotten my hands.
I know the sequel is only weeks away. Tell us about it, and what other project(s) you’re working on?
Uh, let’s see. After Epitaphs (Echoes #2), I’ve got a short story to write for the upcoming Time Travel Chronicles, part of The Future Chronicles anthology series. Then I’ve got Cerberus in Vogue, a novella, coming mid-summer. After that, it’s Apollo, the sequel to last year’s Othella, planned for late summer/early fall. And late fall/winter will be dedicated to Encodings, the third Echoes book.
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in Echoes?
Yes, it’d be about 20,000 words longer. I first envisioned Echoes as a novella series, and I wrote to that goal—realized a bit later I should have gone for the novel length to begin with, but it was almost finished by that point, at a somewhat lacking 63,000 words, so I let it go…because I didn’t have the time or energy to rewrite the whole thing from scratch. I’d been working on it for close to two and a half years at that point. It was time to set it free, despite it being a bit too thin in places.
That actually the reason why Epitaphs is disproportionately longer, clocking in at close to 100,000 words.