J. S. COLLYER: I WRITE FOR FUN
Posted by Ognian Georgiev
J.S. Collyer’s first published novel is on the marker since August. She is a sci-fi author, who loves Star Wars. The readers valuated very high Zero: An Orbit Novel (av. 4.8 stars from 6 reviews in Amazon). Let’s hear from our next gust more about the book.
– What is your book Zero: An Orbit Novel about?
– Zero is set in our own future and is about Kaleb Hugo, an officer in the military establishment who becomes re-assigned to an undercover ship with an unruly crew called the Zero. The Zero’s undercover missions soon uncover corruption and political plans that threaten the lives of millions. Hugo often wishes he’d never found out about these underground and fractious levels of his society, but knows he cannot ignore the rising tide of threat and war that his crew are caught right in the middle of.
– How did you decide to write the story?
– The central idea for pivotal evеnt in the story just came to me one day, and the rest of the plot grew up around it, both the events that could lead to such a thing happening and the consequences to the characters.
– What was the biggest challenge during the write up process?
– I’d say the biggest challenge is sinking the time in to write a novel. I find everything else, plot, consistency, language, characters and dialogue, all fall into place so long as you find enough time to work on it.
– Tell us something more about your main character? Is it close to someone from your real life?
– Kaleb Hugo is a product of the system. He’s a well-trained, well-disciplined Service officer from a powerful family. He was born to be what he was. However, the passion and decency, as well as short temper, that are also family traits, do sometimes rub against what is expected and ordered from him, especially if it involves endangering or betraying those closest to him.
He’s completely fictitious but his best qualities I have taken as inspiration from the people I admire around me.
– How much time did you need to finish the story and to publish it?
– I can write a novel draft in a few months, spend a few weeks editing and seeking feedback and have a finished product in a relatively short amount of time. I think it is absolutely vital to have a break of at least a few weeks from your draft before you go through it one more time and declare it finished. You won’t believe what you miss when you have just finished drafting and have it all fresh in your head. This adds a few more weeks to the process, but generally I can have a finish project within 6 months or so.
How long it takes to publish, however, is not something a writer has any control of unless they self-publishing. In my experience, the publisher has received the final draft and brought out the novel within a year. This is one of the advantages of having an independent publisher. More established publishing houses I understand can take a lot longer, but do have the benefit of larger budgets, wider distribution reach and marketing departments.
– Who are you?
– My name is J. S. Collyer and I am a science fiction novelist, though I have written horror and fantasy in the past. My first novel Zero was brought out by Dagda Publishing in Aug 2014 and is available on Amazon. I live in Lancaster, England, with my partner and two cats. I have also published some short fiction and have more available for free on my WordPress http://jcollyer.wordpress.com.
– What are your writing habits?
– When I have a project with a deadline due, I write every day. I work full time as an admin assistant so during the week I write after work up and all day at weekends. I also book myself regular writing retreats to go away for three or four days at a time to focus solely on writing.
When I don’t have a deadline, I still keep my hand by producing pieces of short fiction or working on ideas for my next novel.
– Are you satisfied by the sales of the book and do you plan another one?
– Yes, I’m very pleased with how Zero is doing. It is available on Amazon as paperback or ebook and is doing well in both formats. I have also sold a lot of copies at my book launch and at some book signings. I am currently working on the sequel.
– What are you doing to promote your book by the best possible way?
– If you have gone the traditional publishing route and have a publisher and an agent, the writer’s part of promoting usually involves going along to books signings organized by the publisher and giving interviews. These are all good ways to drum up interest.
As someone being published with an independent publisher I do slightly more than this. I am on Twitter (@JexShinigami) and have a page on Facebook (facebook.com/jscollyer) as well as having a WordPress blog (jcollyer.wordpress.com). I use all these outlets daily to publish updates on my projects, post links to my book on Amazon and Goodreads and generally keep in touch with potential readers and make myself accessible to them.
– Do you remember your very first story that you write?
– I don’t remember, no, as I have been writing stories all my life. I do have a vague memory of one, a science fiction story too I believe, that I started in school that filled most of a A4 ruled notebook. It never finished it however.
– As a fan of Star Wars do you thing we need to see more Episodes on the sage and what kind of plot line the events must take (As we all waiting the Episode VII in 2015)?
– I am actually very much looking forward to seeing what Disney do with episodes VII – IX. I did not enjoy the prequels as much as the originals, like many others. My main bug-bear was I just didn’t think the stories were told very well, and that is the most important thing to me: a good story, with focus, good dialogue and characterization. For me, episodes I – III didn’t deliver in these areas, or at least not to the standard I enjoy, which made it harder for me to accept the changes to the storylines set down in the original canon.
Disney, however, whatever they are, are good storytellers. They have to be. The Star Wars universe is packed with potential for good stories. Provided they tell a story well and visualize it well, I will enjoy it I believe, even if they do change the storyline from what was set down in the novels inspired by thе original series.
I hope they do stick to what was in the books – the struggle the fledgling Alliance have to keep control against new rebellions and organizations and Luke, Han & Leia’s roles in these events, but so long as they tell the story well and keep it dramatic and consistent, I will be happy.
– When we will make the first contact with aliens?
– Who’s to say we haven’t already?
– If you may ask yourself one question in the interview what it will be? (Don’t forget to answer)
– I think the question I always like to ask any writer is ‘Why do you write?’
– My answer would be – for fun. I like to indulge in my imagination and take myself off to impossible times and places and act out possibilities. I always prioritise this when I’m picking films or watch or fiction to read. It’s escapism, pure and simple and writing your own stories is the best way to experience the impossible.
Take a look at her book: