Lucy Turns Pages: Read, Write, Publish, Promote

Lucy Turns Pages: Author Interview: Alan McGill, multi-genre author

Author Interview: Alan McGill, multi-genre author

This post contains affiliate links

1. Please introduce yourself (who are you, what genre/s do you write in, what books do you have out)

My name is Alan McGill, I’m an American author residing in North-western Pennsylvania. I consider myself a multi-genre author. Most of my stories are horror, fantasy, science fiction, or crime thrillers. Almost all of them have a strong romantic element as well. My debut novel is A Cry in the Moon’s Light. It’s the first in a series set in the late 1700’s of southern France. A young woman must travel through the Dark Forest to be by the side of her dying grandmother. She is stalked by a mysterious creature and a deadly wolf pack is determined to kill her. I also published a companion artbook/guidebook called Father Daniel’s Compendium of the Undead. It serves as a closer look at the characters and world of this series. On September 9th, I’ll be releasing a prequel novella called RED DOOR: A Cry in the Moon’s Light Story. This is a look at how our heroine falls in love with a farm boy and we get our first glimpse of the black wolf.

2. What are your favourite books?

The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. Wizard and Glass, The Gunslinger being my favorites.

The Hobbit by Tolkien.

The Princess of Mars series by Edgar Rice Burrough

Canary Row by Steinbeck

3. When did you know you wanted to be an author?

I don’t know that I ever wanted to be an author. I enjoy storytelling and I’ve been writing stories for a long time. Most I never published or submitted. I decided to narrate A Cry in the Moon’s Light as an audio drama I podcast form. After it reached 30k in a year, got great reviews, I went ahead and self-published. Now I’m hooked and determined to get the other books out there.

4. What is your favourite part of the writing process?

I enjoy crafting the story. The initial process of hammering out the first draft.

5. What is your least favourite and how do you get through it?

I normally edit the first draft, then send it to the editorial service. They do a round and send it back to me for approval. They make the corrections then send it back for a final run through to catch any mistakes. This entire sequence is my least favourite. I just buckle down and remind myself this is for the people purchasing the book, they are spending hard earned money and I should make sure it is as good as can be.

6. What is your writing routine?

I normally write in the evening after work and the weekends. Weekend morning are the optimum time for me.

7. How do you balance writing (and everything else to do with it) with the rest of your life?

I write when I can but try to keep to a schedule.

8. What inspires you? How do you beat writers block?

There are a lot of things that inspire me. When people enjoy the story and take the time to comment on the podcast, it helps to confirm my belief the story is good and worth telling. As for writer’s block, I don’t get it that often. Normally I’ll come to a point where I need to figure out the next steps. Clearing my mind and doing other things so I can think about the story and where it needs to go always does the trick.

9. How do you keep consistent/write a lot?

Sticking to a schedule.

10. Does anyone read or edit your work before publication? If so, how did you find them?

I have a few people who read the story or excerpts in advance to make sure the story is interesting, keeps them curious for more, and is entertaining. I use a professional editorial service to sharpen the book. They do the editing, layout design, and placement. I hire my own book cover specialist preferring to give the basic design and have her professionally assemble everything. I’m hands on with the entire process from start to finish.

11. Can we have a sneaky look at your future plans?

Sure. I write and narrate all my own books starting with A Cry in the Moon’s Light. This is a three-part trilogy with an accompanying artbook/guidebook and a prequel novella. Eventually, all three books will be available as a paperback, e-book, audio-drama podcast, and audiobook. Only book one and the prequel novella are available. The first draft of Book two, The UNDEAD WARS is complete. I’m releasing a special edition of Book One with a variant cover, but this will also have two chapters from the Undead Wars. A sneak preview of what is to come.

I also have a sci-fi crime thriller detective noir about a private detective in a futuristic city. He gets pulled into a case involving two serial killer clowns. Big Tech and corrupt politicians are covering up the murders, but the plot goes way deeper. This story won’t be ready until next year. I have three chapters left and I’ll be recording the book in my studio along with all the others. I already have the cover ready to go and my beta readers are loving it so far.

12. Finally, what advice would you give to other writers (inspiring, those publishing and those published)?

First, realize that everyone has an opinion. This including editors, agents, publishers. Nobody is going to like everything. Singular opinions don’t mean much, but if everyone is saying similar things, good or bad, it might be worth taking stock. Be wary of criticism and don’t take it to heart. Lots of people like to hide behind the idea they helping an author grow. Siskel and Ebert didn’t agree on much. So, who was right? There are tons of examples of critics rejecting artists of all kinds. Yet the work not only endured but people loved it. Carrie was rejected 30 times. Led Zeppelin and The Beatles had albums trashed by critics. This means nothing if the audience likes it, and there is an audience for everyone.

Second, if you can afford it, hire a good editing service to polish your work. Fresh eyes find things you may miss. It’s your name on the cover, even if it’s a pen name, so make it as professional as it can be.

Lastly, to paraphrase King, write the story and worry about making it perfect later.

Check out all of Alan's books here.

No comments:

Post a Comment