It was my pleasure to visit with Alan Nayes recently. Here's what he had to say....
Hi, Sue. First I would like to say thank you for having me on your blog today. I’m from Texas but have resided in southern California for over the past two decades. Love it out here but get back to my home state as much as possible.
What do you do to unwind and relax?
When I’m not writing or editing or thinking about my next project, I enjoy reading and exercising –not at the same time, though.
What is your favorite food?
That’s a tough one because I love all kinds of foods—if I had to choose one meal that I really crave, it would have to be king crab legs or sushi. That’s two, sorry. Guess I’ll just have to eat them both.
When and why did you begin writing?
I started writing in college, but it was music. Very quickly I learned I couldn’t sing well—actually not at all--so I took a hiatus from writing until I moved to California where I took some classes in creative writing to relax. Little did I realize then that writing is anything but relaxing—for me, anyway. Now reading, that’s relaxing.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
That’s easy—when I sold my first novel GARGOYLES.
Do you have a specific writing style?
No, Sue, I think my style is dictated by the story. It varies depending on what I am writing. One of my projects is more literary while most are what I would call “commercial” fiction. At least, I hope they turn out to be commercial. We’ll see.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Wow, I don’t have to think long for this reply. I find that no facet of writing comes easy to me—except perhaps the initial idea. After that, all work. Perhaps the most difficult aspect is just getting myself to sit down and write--anything. There are times though that my writing really flows and the characters almost seem to be writing the scenes and dialogue on their own—love those sessions. I wish they occurred more often.
I have several in the works. HEMLOCK POND is a horror story about a woman and her young son who move into an old farmhouse with a haunted pond. THE LEARNER is a paranormal love story that I’m still in the process of hashing out. It will be compelling, though. More to come. I’m also busy preparing my two biomedical thrillers/horror novels GARGOYLES and THE UNNATURAL for kindle and nook releases in the next couple of months—GARGOYLES at the end of June and THE UNNATURAL sometime in July. I’m even working on a childrens’ story, possibly a kindle release in August. RETURN TO UNDERLAND
What advice would you give to writers just starting out?
Three words—Don’t give up. If writing is what you want to do, don’t let anyone else tell you differently. Again—don’t give up. Persistent can pay marvelous dividends.
Which is your favorite of the books you have written?
GARGOYLES. Love the main character, Amoreena Daniels, and the plot’s not bad either.
Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Love to, Sue. BARBARY POINT is about a young woman from Los Angeles who is engaged to a wealthy older man. When her father--whom she never knew because her parents were divorced when she was quite young--suddenly dies, Kelly must fly back to Oshkosh, Wisconsin to close out her deceased father’s estate. She only wishes to make the trip brief and get home to her stable life in Los Angeles, but unexpectedly, Kelly meets a fishing guide and falls in love.
Who designed the covers?
The cover for BARBRY POINT was designed by Claudia McKinney. Claudia did a great job I think, and you can see more of her work at http://facebook.com/phatpuppyart.
How did you come up with the title for your book?
Sue, the title for BARBARY POINT came from an actual setting—a family cottage we own on the shores of Lake Winnebago. There is a small point of land on the shoreline that really has no name but I always thought this would be a great place for a love story—the lake, the cottage, the outdoors--and you can fish too, though I never seem to catch anything. However, the drinks sure taste good on the boat.
What are you reading now?
I’m reading novels by a couple of indie authors. Just finished reading PJ Jones ROMANCE NOVEL and am currently reading Cheryl Shireman’s LIFE IS BUT A DREAM. My to read list includes Steig Larson’s THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE and THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNETS NEST. Also, Jennifer Egan’s VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD.
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Sue, I don’t really have a favorite author. There are so many well-written books out there to chose from it would be difficult for me to name a favorite. I think I’m influenced—and appreciate--any successful author. I read their books and think, “why didn’t I write this?” I’m partially kidding—but they do inspire me to write better stories.
Thank you again for hosting me today, Sue.
***Thank you Alan for allowing us the time to visit.***
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