Fantastic horrors with mysterious beasts lurk on the pages written by my next guest. Imagination combined with research and coincidence can conjure up some amazing characters and plots! Please read today’s interview with my talented guest Luke Phillips, check out his writing, read, rate and review!
1. You are currently promoting your first novel – Shadow Beast. The title itself oozes horror. How did this book come to life?
Whilst I was studying zoology at university, I became aware of a phenomenon in the UK. People were reporting seeing large exotic cats across the country, and I was intrigued to discover exactly what it was they thought they were seeing. After talking to eye-witnesses and focus group and researching the subject, I had enough close-encounters, background and even conspiracy theories to start putting a story together.
2. What made you want to start writing in the first place?
I’ve always written. Even at primary school I enjoyed writing. I had very good teachers who encouraged and inspired me to take it further at secondary school. Writing is something I do to escape and play out everything from wish fulfillment to righting wrongs. The great thing is that now I get to take people with me on the journey.
3. How does it feel the moment you realize you have just become a published author?
There is something very special about getting your first printed book delivered in the post, and I got the same kick being able to download by book onto my Kindle. There’s just a tremendous sense of achievement and pride in creating something unique and personal to you.
4. Do you like to write the same genres as the ones you like to read or not? Which genre do you feel is your comfort zone?
I read a lot of non-fiction as research, but generally I do read the same genres. I like my horror. But I also read science fiction and fantasy, as well as thrillers. I am definitely one of those people who has plenty of books to cover whatever mood I might be in!
5. Who provides you with the support you need – a pat on the back and a kick in the rear if necessary?
I have really great friends who look after me. They support me, give me feedback and challenge me all at the same time.
6. What’s the most difficult thing about the writing process for you, including pre-writing, writing and post-writing activities?
I like to write, but I find it very hard to go over things a number of times, so editing and proof reading can be a drain for me. It’s definitely something I’m happy to let someone else do!
7. If you could interview any writer in history, who would you interview and what would you ask?
I’d probably like to talk to Jack London. Not only did he write two of the most influential stories of my childhood, The Call of the Wild and White Fang, but he also lived and worked in Whitechapel at the time of Jack the Ripper. I’d love to pick his brain about his thoughts on mankind and the savagery of nature!
8. Do you have a soundtrack playing in your head while you write? Which one?
I tend to have classical music playing in the background. But film scores really work for me too, as does AC/DC and cheese rock generally!
9. Have you ever tried public readings? Do you think book promotion profits from authors engaging directly with readers?
I did my first public reading recently and was pretty nervous, so don’t think I gave my best performance. That said I’ve definitely been to readings that have completely captivated everyone there. I think promotion really works when authors engage directly with readers, whatever the format.
10. What is your favourite childhood memory regarding a book?
Probably discovering The Hobbit for the first time. I was 11 and going away to my first school camp. My grandfather bought it for me. It was fantastic!
11. Would you like to add anything about your current work or send a message to the readers?
Only that I really appreciate that so many people have bought the book, and to kindly ask that they leave a review. I’m currently working on a science fiction story set in the oceans called Dark Tides, then I’ll be cracking on with the sequel to Shadow Beast called The Daughters of the Darkness.
Read, rate and review!