I became acquainted with California author, Alan Nayes, around the same time I was introduced to his book titled, Gargoyles. It was a riveting read, keeping me turning pages long into the night.
I wanted to learn more about the man behind such an intriguing bio-medical thriller so I fired off a few questions which he gratefully answered; I'm going to share those answers with you.
Norma: What does being an author mean to you?
Alan: Wow, that’s not an easy answer, Norma. Let me answer from two perspectives. First, as a writer, being an author means I have the chance to create something all my own from scratch. I love taking a blank page and turning it into a story.
Now from the reader perspective, being an author means I have a responsibility to create the best, most entertaining story I’m capable of. In the final analysis, that is what writing fiction is all about to me — entertaining the reader. I want anyone who spends their hard earned cash for one of my stories to feel they received their money’s worth.
Norma: When did you first realize that you wanted to write and publish a book? How old/young were you at the time?
Alan: I’d moved to California from Texas several years ago and decided to take a creative writing course at a local community college. I wrote a short story that was well received by the class and it was then I knew I wanted to write a novel and get it published.
Norma: From its inception, how long did it take you to write and publish your first book? Was the experience mostly rewarding or filled with varying levels of frustration?
Alan: GARGOYLES was my first novel published. From start to finish - including that terrible first draft, rewrites and then more rewrites - it took me about a year to ready the manuscript for agents and publishers. Along the way, there were both highs and lows, and frustration was a constant companion. But that goes with being an author — at least for me, anyway. Was it all worth it — you bet!
Norma: Are you currently writing another book which you hope to publish at some point? If so, we'd love to hear more about it.
Alan: Yes, Norma, I have several titles published, including PLAGUE and RESURRECTION, the sequels to my biomed thriller GARGOYLES which was released in January, 2012. I also have an erotic horror story, GIRL BLUE, which was released by Samhain Publishing in March of 2012 as well as a few other titles published. I do have other titles in the works.
Norma: If you have published multiple titles, which book is your favourite and why? If you can't decide on one favourite, that's OK; break the rules and give us two or three.
Alan: I’ll probably have to go with GARGOYLES. I love the character Amoreena and it was also my first published novel — my other novels come in at a close second!
Norma: Who has been a major source of inspiration for you as a writer/author?
Alan: Without trying to sound egotistical, most of my inspiration has come from within. If I don’t make it happen, it won’t happen. I have no choice but to inspire myself. Every time I read or hear about an author who struggled and suddenly makes it “big”, though, that also inspires me.
Norma: What is your ultimate dream, in terms of being a writer/author?
Alan: That’s easy to answer - write that proverbial bestseller. Will it happen? Don’t know, but I can’t say I’m not trying.
Norma: What is one of your favourite quotes? It can be from a book you wrote or something you heard throughout your life. If you did not write it, please cite the source, if possible.
Alan: I don’t really have a favorite quote, though taped to a window beside my computer I have this list of failures by Abraham Lincoln. It’s titled, Lessons in Rejection. I don’t know who compiled the list but there are about 10 or 11 failures ending with Elected President of the United States in 1860. Whenever I start feeling a little down, I read Lincoln’s, Road to the Whitehouse.
Norma: Tell us a little about your life. What does an average day look like?
Alan: An average day depends on whether I have to work at my real job; I’m in the healthcare field. On weekends, I try to get in at least four or five hours of writing. This may include editing, research or tackling brand new material. If I’m working, then I will try to write at night. It may only be a half hour but at least I try to get something down.
Norma: What are three of your favourite hobbies?
Reading, exercising and enjoying the outdoors.
Norma's closing thoughts:
It has been a pleasure getting to know more about you, Alan Nayes, and I wish you continued success in your writing endeavors. If I enjoy all of your titles as much as I did Gargoyles, I'm sure I'll be a fan for life.
If you would like to learn more about Alan Nayes and his books, please visit his website and blog. You can also catch up with Alan Nayes at Goodreads, Facebook and can follow him at Twitter. You can see a list of his books at Amazon.