Interview With Novelist Glenn Starkey
What are the challenges of being a novelist today?
The greatest challenge is writing a novel worth reading. Accomplish this and the rest is procedural in terms of marketing your book. You can obtain help from mentors, friends and even hire people to promote your project, but if you do not have a book worth reading, you have no foundation to build upon.
What is your newest book? Why did you write it?
I am presently completing my first “sci-fi” based book “Amazon Moon.” As an action-adventure and historical fiction novelist, I wanted to challenge myself with a new creative path of writing — a hard hitting action-adventure that ends with a science-fiction twist. While some authors choose to remain within a single genre, I want to be known as an author that can cover a spectrum of writings and always turn out a quality story regardless of the genre.
What do you love most about being a published author?
I love writing a novel and receiving comments from men and women readers around the world telling me how much they enjoyed the story. When they begin telling me how much they loved the characters, the action, the storyline, and so forth, it truly makes my day! I then realize how I achieved my goals of being an author, capturing a reader’s soul, and making them want to read “one more page” before stopping for the day. I had one reader state, “I hate you!” Just that alone stunned me then I smiled as I read, “…you made me miss so much sleep because I loved your book and couldn’t stop until the end.”
Any advice for a struggling writer?
Honesty with yourself about your writing skills and perseverance in your efforts is important. First, study the craft by reading a wide variety of books in different genres. Second, write and complete your book before worrying about advertising, marketing, book sales and promotions. Third, get your book read by at least ten non-related people so you have a feel for your writing ability—and don’t argue with their review of your work. Analyze their comments and find the norm of problems they presented to you…then fix the problems whether it is your poor writing skills or a weak storyline. Fourth, be prepared for a bad review down the road. It doesn’t mean you are a bad writer. Remember, not everyone likes the same things in life.
Where do you see the book industry heading?
The first computers filled a room with their monstrous sizes and used IBM punch cards and reels of magnetic tape for their data. Fast-forward from that point and today your cellphone is a mini-computer with far more abilities. Your cellphone is a mini-computer. You can read a book or write one using your cellphone if you wish. Now look at the book industry. It has moved from ancient printing presses with all their labors to electronic distribution of books via “eBooks.” The evolutionary society we live in, courtesy of technological advancements, combined computers and the publishing industry so tightly that it leaves future developments a wide open race. We have become a demanding society which expects technology to continually change—and do so swiftly. There should always be readers and a demand for well written books, but the medium we will be using is anyone’s guess. I am of the generation that still loves to “hold” a book in hand, but my grandson will be of the generation that relates more to an eBook than a hard or soft cover novel. Neither is best or wrong; it is simply how we have evolved and what we have learned during growth.
For anyone in search of a definitive answer about the future of the industry, they will be disappointed to learn there is no set answer. There will be more of a lean toward electronics such as eBooks, but the love of physically holding a book will remain for several more generations. I do firmly believe though that “big house” publishers will gradually lose their domination over the publishing industry. I believe “indie-authors” and “indie-publishing” are forces to be reckoned with.
For more information about Glenn Starkey and Solomon’s Men, Year of the Ram, and The Cobra and Scarab: A Novel of Ancient Egypt, please consult: http://GlennStarkey.net