1: What is the most productive time of the day for you to write?
I’m a morning person. Nothing like coffee and a keyboard. But I have to write whenever I can. So that means making the time to write in a world that hates writers.
2: Do you start your projects writing with paper and pen or is it all on the computer?
I occasionally will doodle if I am not around a computer, and I draw little maps of my fictional settings. Usually I end up with one coffee-stained page of scribbles that are my entire notes for a novel. But these days is more convenient to go straight to file.
3: What do you draw inspiration from?
I research a lot of local Appalachian legends, and as a journalist I come across a lot of quirky human-interest stories. It all goes in the mental filing cabinet and comes up when needed.
4: Do you set goals for yourself when you sit down to write such as word count?
I have an overriding goal of two pages a day. Sometimes a good day of writing means throwing away five pages and moving backward. Consistency is the key.
5: Are you a published or a self published author and how do you come up with your cover art?
I have done both. The industry is wide open right now and I will experiment with anything that better helps readers connect with me. Neil Jackson is doing my indie covers and they have a cool branding identity.
6: What drives you to choose the career of being a writer?
Writing is one of those things you can’t not do. If you’re a writer, you do it no matter how many rejections you get, how bad you are, or how hopeless it all seems.
7: Do you own an ebook reading device?
I use Kindle for PC. I may buy when the dust settles a little. They sure are cool.
8: Who are some of your favorite authors and what are you reading now?
Mark Twain, Shirley Jackson, William Goldman, Ray Bradbury, Elmore Leonard, Stephen King, John Steinbeck, Ira Levin. I have a lot of influences. Right now I am reading some new books by friends of mine, including Debbi Mack, David H. Burton, and Jon F. Merz.
9: What do you think of book trailers and do you have any plans to have any?
I like the trailers if they have a narrative arc and tell a complete story. If it’s just an ad, I don’t understand selling a book by making you wish it were a movie instead. I am plotting a few but they will be complete, miniature stories related to the work, so that you get an experience out of it.
10: What are you working on now that you can talk about?
I am revising a young adult novel and during final polish on my next indie release, Speed Dating with the Dead, an urban fantasy thriller that will be out as soon as possible. You can learn about it at http://www.hauntedcomputer.com/speeddating.htm. I have a psychological thriller Disintegration that will probably be out late summer, and then the author’s preferred edition of my 2003 novel The Harvest.I am also excited about running Indie Books Blog and helping readers learn about new books not covered by the mainstream press and big blogs. If you’re a writer, drop a line to indiebooksblog at yahoo.com and get featured. The more indie writers talk about other indie books, the easier readers will