To kick off our month long horror treats, we have an interview with horror author, John Watson. His debut into the word of book began with Karaoke Night.
Name: John Watson
Latest Release: Karaoke Night
- Has writing always been a passion of yours? It has been, although there have been periods where the passion waned. Rejections when I was younger had a negative effect on my willingness to write, then having a family took it away altogether. There was probably a 10-year spell where I wrote nothing at all.
- At what age did you begin to write seriously? Probably around 12 or 13. I remember my English teacher asking me to stay behind after class to discuss a story that I had handed in. He asked me how often I wrote at home. When I said never, he told me to start writing daily.
- What is your favorite genre to write and does that differ from the genre you like to read? No matter what different genres I try to tackle, a horror element always creeps in. Not surprising given that 99% of the books I read are horror.
- Where does your inspiration to write come from? Most commonly from dreams, but I will often see or hear something on TV or out and about that causes my creative brain to switch on.
- How does the generation you belong to impact your writing style, or does it? I think that it has a profound effect. Computers weren’t around in any real way when I was a kid. I was shy and introspective, with most of my free time spent in the library devouring books. I started to imagine what would happen to the characters after the book I was reading ended. I’m not so sure I would have gone that route had the internet been around. I’m easily distracted by shiny things.
6.What does your writing schedule look like in a typical week? I freelance and have a couple of big clients who operate on a strict deadline. I start early and can usually be done by noon. I try to commit a couple of hours per day to writing fiction. Sometimes those hours deliver 75 words and sometimes 7,500.
- Are you a pantser or a plotter? A combination of both. I describe my writing style as being akin to doing a paint by numbers type of deal. I create the basic outline with very few details. It’s when I start to write that the colors take shape, although the pantser part of me often takes me outside of the planned lines. That’s often where the best parts land.
- Can you name an event in your life that has made the biggest impact on where you are today? I can think of a couple. When I was a teenager, I would write stories on any pieces of paper I could find. I hid them in my bedroom because I was much to shy to ever share them. My sister found them and went out and purchased me an old used typewriter. I wore that thing into the ground. The other big deal was getting signed to an exclusive deal at Crazy Ink. That has allowed me to focus on bringing the ideas in my head to life.
- Do you think writers have better luck going the traditional or the self-publishing route? It depends on the writer, but having done both, I much prefer the traditional route. Writing is a very solitary process, but having a publisher where you feel as though you are part of a family is great, especially when everyone pulled together to help you market your work.
- What are you working on right now? I’m finishing up a short story for a Crazy Ink anthology called Infamy, after which I will be starting in a novella called Crueller for the Donut Shop Series.
- What do you find are the most effective means of promotion? Social media is huge. It’s a great opportunity for people to get to know you beyond the name on the cover of your book. People tend to buy from those that they like and trust, so I try to be really active and respond to everything.
- What advice do you have for someone just beginning his or her journey into writing? Read a lot and take time to find your own voice. Write what makes you happy, not what is currently trendy or what you believe will sell. Your writing will be better when it’s fun to create your worlds.
- What piece of fiction has made the biggest impact in your writing career and why? Imagica by Clive Barker. It is the only book I have ever finished and immediately restarted. It made me realize that I really needed to work on my craft if I was serious about ever being published.
- What final thoughts would you leave potential readers with? Actively seek out indie authors. Some of the best books that I have read in recent years are by people you will have never heard off. If you love the book you read, leave a review. You’d be surprised at how much that helps the author.
- What is your favorite story you’ve written/read? Tell us about it. It was a short story called “The Dress.” It was a challenge for a writing group I used to be a part of and was about a day in the life of an old wedding dress. It turned out incredibly dark, but I remember finishing it and thinking that it was probably as good as I was ever going to get.
- What three things must you have on hand to write? Coffee, music, and my Kindle so that I can read during breaks.
- Where do you see yourself/your writing in 5 years? Hopefully still with Crazy Ink with a nice little back catalog under my belt. Being able to focus solely on fiction would be the ultimate dream come true.
- Everyone has a dream mate. What’s yours look like? Do you ever expect to find him/her? She looks exactly like my wife. Penny is my greatest champion and also my harshest critic. Karaoke Night would never have seen the light of day had she not encouraged me to submit it to a publisher.
- If you could be anything other than what you are, what occupation would you choose? It would probably still be something artistic. Probably a musician or a chef, like my wife.
- If you could have dinner with anyone dead or alive, who would it be, and why? Clive Barker. He is my favorite writer by a wide margin. I’d love a little glimpse inside his head.
About the Author:
As well as robots, clowns, and living statues, John Watson has an extensive list of things that terrify him. He is of the belief that writing about these horrors will make him immune to their evils, but it is still a work in progress. Mr. Watson spends most of his time hiding out in the closet space beneath the stairs, where he is currently working on a series of scary short stories. He resides in Atlanta with his chef wife Penny and a pair of equally skittish fur babies.
John Watson is an exclusive author with Crazy Ink Publishing. You can follow him on social media here:Meet #horror #author @authorjohnw in this exclusive #interview. #WordWhisperer #31daysofHalloween #Halloween2019 #amreading Click To Tweet