Author Interview with Tom Atwood

I would like to introduce a dear friend of mine, Tom Atwood!

1. What genre are your books?

My current work in progress is urban fantasy, but I’ve written cyberpunk, science fiction, steampunk and mystery.

2. What draws you to this genre?

I am a huge fan of the Dresden Files. I grew up around mystery and sci-fi, so for a while those were the genres I was working on. Then I read Storm Front and absolutely fell in love. Between that, City of Bones, and Supernatural, I started to get really into the genre, and this is my second attempt at the genre.

3. What project are you working on at the moment?

I am working on Dauntless, which is meant to be the first in a long series of novels.

4. What’s it about?

The story is about Kacey Alexander, a young girl who recently went through the tragedy of losing her mother. When she looks through her mother’s belongings, she finds out that her family belongs to a long line of Sentinels, mages who are dedicated to protecting the world from the forces of darkness. Following the threads of her mother’s last investigation, she learns about a conspiracy to plunge humans and the mystical community. Together with her friends, she has to learn to stand against the fear that controls her and save her city.

5. Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is special?

Kacey is a character of contradictions.  On the surface, she’s the strongest character I’ve ever worked with.  She’s strong, fierce, defiant, and can do almost anything she sets her mind to.  Beneath the surface, though, she’s plagued with abandonment issues, isolation, and pain.  Her mother’s death, and the subsequent discovery that her parents have been lying to her, practically destroyed her psyche, so she’s been trying to put a mask over her pain until she finds a way out.

6. Have you written anything else?

Nothing that’s been published. I’ve written a few short stories and some fan fiction in the past, but this is my first attempt at anything ambitious.

7. What are your ambitions for your writing career?

It depends on the day you ask me, really. Some days I want to top the best sellers list, host panels at comic-con and have the kind of fame that big name writers like Steven King and JK Rowling have, and other days I’ll be happy if I can finish this novel without tearing my hair out.

8. Which writers inspire you?

Oh wow, how long is this interview supposed to go?  I could be here for hours listing all the authors and creators that have inspired me along the way.  I suppose the big three are Joss Whedon, who inspired me to try and weave tragedy and comedy together, Alexandre Dumas, who was the first author who inspired my love of writing adventure, and Jim Butcher, who, as I mentioned, first inspired my love off Urban Fantasy.

9. When did you decide to become a writer? Why do you write?

I first started writing as a means of dealing with my parent’s divorce, kid stuff really, writing down additional adventures for the characters I read about in my illustrated classics. From there I started imagining my own characters, and imagining them overcoming similar obstacles as the ones I face.

10. Do you have a special time or place to write?

Whenever I find time. Mostly on the weekends, but I do write on my lunch hour occasionally.

11. Where do you get your inspiration?

Anywhere and everywhere. The strangest place I’ve ever gotten inspiration from is a very odd swirl of frost that was frozen on my windshield.

12. Do you work on an outline or do you prefer to see where the idea takes you?

I used to prefer just taking off and writing, but these days I’m trying an outline, and seeing what comes of it.

13. Do you ever get writer’s block? How do you overcome it?

I have in the past.  The only way I’ve found to overcome it is just to keep writing, ignore the awful parts that come out, and keep the good.  It is easier in theory than in practice.

14. What is the hardest thing for you about writing?

Finding time is definitely a challenge, but the hardest thing is going back on a piece you’ve written, or someone else reading a piece, and not being happy with the result.

15. How do you market your books? Why did you choose this route?

I haven’t had anything published, but I do have an author page and a blog that are under construction where I plan to feature more information on my books.

16. How much research do you do?

It depends. For items that I have a solid background on, I just do a quick refresher. For items where it’s considerably murkier, however, I bring up anything and everything I can get my hands on. I’ve spent hours before on a single myth or legend, just to make sure I have it right.

17. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I am useless without the warm, glowing radiation of the computer.

18. What are some of your favorite books/authors?

Jim Butcher, Jack London, JK Rowling, and Alexandre Dumas.

19. Are you currently reading any books?

Yes, I’m currently reading Geekomancy and City of Bones I just finished.

20. How can readers discover more about you and your work?

Blog: http://atwoodtjr.blogspot.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/tatwoodauthor

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