Here’s a blog interview I did recently with Dan Alatorre, author of The Navigators, a new sci-fi/action book based around a time travel machine. Very interesting reading, it had me hooked from the start, well worth a recommendation!
1.When did you first realise you wanted to be a writer?
Very, very early.Teachers and others would comment on my writing, occasionally in a good way.As a kid I wrote cartoon strips for my older brother (he was in college) and he loved them. That evolved, and a boss once said I was really good, even at report writing. So I’ve always been good at it. I edited my high school newspaper and learned how to spot mistakes other people made, but strangely I can’t see my own. That’s why my blog followers know it’s really me when I post. They see the typos and say, yeah, that’s Dan. The Navigators has no typos, thanks to my amazing editor.
2.How long does it typically take you to write a book?
The Navigators took right around four months, which is normal for me, but some of my books took less. I write fast. I know that’s not for everybody, but that works for me. I get completely obsessed with a story and think about it 24/7 until it’s done. Even stepping onto the treadmill to run, I’ll get a great idea for a twist in the story and dash over to my desk to write it down, getting back to the treadmill in a few hours later. Maybe.
3.What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
You don’t want to hear this. I get up at 4am to write. It’s a habit I started when my daughter was a baby and it serves me well. I can get 3-4 hours of writing done before anybody else is awake. Oh, and I don’t drink coffee, another deal breaker or most new writers. Bottom line, you have to find time to write, and you won’t find watching TV or reading email, so I do that stuff later – if at all. Navs was written in the early AM most days.
4.How are your books published? (traditional, indie, etc.)
I tend to lean indie because I love working on every aspect of my book: the cover, the blurb, the marketing. I also like keeping most of the money a book makes. Some titles lend themselves to trad publishing, and I’ll shop those. I think both worlds can peacefully co-exist. Being a sci fi thriller, The Navigators didn’t neatly fit into a Barnes & Noble book shelf; action, adventure, sci fi, thriller? They don’t have that!
5.What is your favourite book?
Catch-22. It’s funny, original, satiric, and smart. I love the flashbacks and the recurring scenes, the characters – it’s amazing. I hated it in school but I read it later as an adult and loved it. Great stuff. I hope I can write something that good one day.
6.What do you think makes a good story?
Something interesting happening on every page, and something unique happening in every story. That makes a page turner and page turners make readers love reading your book.
7.Do you have any suggestions to help us become better writers? If so, what are they?
Tons. Write every day. Pour your heart into the pages. Write openly and honestly and in such a personal way that it is embarrassing to say it but anyone who reads it will see it’s from the heart. Join a critique group and seek out the best critique partners you can find. When you discover a new writer who is more talented than you, shout it form the mountain tops. Do everything you can to help your writer friends be successful, and look for authors who would do that for you, too. They’re out there.
8.What do you hate most about the writing process?
Editing. I hate it. HATE it. Deep hatred. I believe everything I write is ready for the public the instant I’m finished typing it – even while it has the typos in it.
9.Where can we find your books?
The Navigators, my sci-fi thriller, is available at Amazon. Stop by, grab a copy, and leave a few kind words. 5 stars is always appreciated, too. You’ll thank yourself! I’ll thank you, too!
10.Will you give us an excerpt from one of your favourite works?
Actually, you can read the first chapter on my blog OR you can read the first three chapters on Amazon. Most of the time if you read one chapter of my book, you’re hooked – so please head on over to Ammy and check it out!
Dan Alatorre is author several bestsellers. His new novel, The Navigators, is a fast-paced sci fi thriller that breaks new ground in its fascinating characters and truly unique story.
The Navigators (global link)
Dan’s Amazon author page
Thanks Dan and good luck with the book! 🙂