There’s been a lot of drama this week in Romancelandia otherwise known as #cockygate, that has extended itself to the rest of the Indie Author world and beyond. I won’t rehash it. I won’t give her any more of my energy.
The one thing that rang out to me in this mess was the Open Letter to Faleena Hopkins on Cassie Sharp’s blog. She spoke of finding your tribe. Your group of people you can celebrate with, mourn with, scream with, cry with and vent with. Your “safe space” where you can say anything without fear.
I learned this early on in my publishing journey. That other indie authors were not my competition. That if we lift each other up, and support each other – we all win. My tribe started with me and one other indie. It was small and lonely, but we had each other. Then we formed a group – and I had my tribe. We all clicked from day one. The level of trust we’ve formed is awesome and it’s become one of my favorite parts of my day to connect with the ladies of the KB 101 tribe.
To my tribe – thank you. Thank you for letting me vent, cry, celebrate – without fear.
I can’t tell you how to find your tribe. I can tell you to join groups and be active and engage in them. If you click with someone – reach out! Don’t be shy, don’t feel weird – reach out because you never know what kind of magic can happen when a group comes together and shares their collective knowledge.
Today I am sitting down with Derek Borne! I met Derek at Foster an Author, an annual event taking place on social media. He and I began chatting back and forth about our books and oddly enough – food – we’ve been friends ever since. Derek is an interesting and friendly guy, this interview was tons of fun.
- Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
I’m a Canadian indie author (wearing my tuque right now, eh). My wife and I have a bearded dragon named Ziggy for a pet, who loves to shoot me glares as if I’m an idiot or did something wrong. As for true backgrounds, I’m a bit of a mutt with predominant European genetics, which allows me to have a taste for many foods. Especially pizza. *runs off and orders some*
- When did you first decide you wanted to be a writer?
When I was little, I used to tell stories into tape recorders (dating myself here). My imagination had no bounds. As I got older, I loved to sit down and let the stories flow onto paper. From there, things just more and more interesting. At least, I think so.
- Do you have any interesting writing quirks?
Pretty sure I make the faces I’m trying to describe when I write them. Maybe that’s why I get so many looks from my bearded dragon…
- Which writers inspire you?
As I got older, I got into Michael Crichton’s work. Man that guy could write science thrillers. A lot of what he wrote made me want to one day get to his level.
- What have you written and where can we buy or see them?
So far, my superhero/spy debut novel The Ultimate Agent is on Amazon Kindle and Paperback. Universal Buy Link: http://mybook.to/UADB
- Give us an insight into your favorite main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
Don’t make me choose. Seriously. I love all of them for different reasons. I guess if I HAD to choose, it’d be Devon (I’m sure I’ll get some ribbing from the others later). The thing with him is, sure he’s got superpowers. But that’s not what makes him the hero. He’s got some demons from his past, as everyone does. But his ability to live with them or push them to the side in order to save the world, that’s a journey I love telling. And I hope that his example can inspire others.
- What are you working on at the minute?
Lately, I’ve been working on rewriting my sequel in the UA series. It’s been a fun time adding the real guts to the story, as I’d written it when I was 15. So now at my nearly 30-year-old eyes, my writing ability has changed so much. (At least I hope so!)
- What genre are your books and what draws you to that genre?
My books are of the superhero and spy variety. I’m a huge nerd, mostly Marvel (Sorry, DC). Writing about heroes and what makes a true hero has always been a big interest of mine.
- Why do you write?
Mainly I love to write for the fun of it. Creating worlds, characters, twists, it’s something that’s good for the brain. 15-30 minutes a day of writing and being creative even relieves stress. And if someone loves the stories you tell, then that makes it all the more worthwhile.
- Do you work from an outline or do you prefer just to see where an idea takes you?
A general idea of where things will go is always in my mind. From there, I let my imagination do the rest. Why plan twists when you could surprise even yourself?
- What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
My novels aren’t just centered around one main character. There are many characters on their own little journey. But once those characters come together as a team, it can be challenging working out the dialogue and choreography. But it’s also fun when you get the hang of it.
- When you aren’t writing, what are you doing?
I’m usually watching hockey, singing and playing my guitar, watching the latest superhero movie and spending time with my lovely wife.
- What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
My advice is: If you don’t know something, don’t be afraid to ask someone who’s done it. The indie author community is all about helping each other out. You may be on your own path, but don’t be afraid to make friends along the way. And when writing, make sure you’re always hydrated. And the best writing fuel is pizza.
- Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?
There’s a review competition on my author page right now! You could win the chance to be a character in the UA universe, and an early ARC of UA2! http://bit.ly/2DNSF3d
About The Ultimate Agent:
WARNING: THIS MISSIVE CONTAINS CLASSIFIED INFORMATION
Undertake an adventure of epic, global, and dire proportions.
Agent #524 – Devon Bertrand
Once a normal civilian, Agent Bertrand has been recruited by the Ultimate Agency—a secret organization of the world’s best spies. Now, after undergoing genetic upgrades, he has become a superhuman agent dedicated to fighting against all threats against the nation he now calls home.
Agent #146 – Brett Gallagher
A brilliant scientist, Dr. Gallagher invents and utilizes technologically advanced gadgets and weapons to fight against national security threats like a modern day superhero.
The Target – Maximus Romanov
Employed by a mysterious Russian terrorist group, Romanov is a superhuman operative wreaking havoc in the United States.
Mission Data – Confidential
Join Agent Devon Bertrand and Agent Brett Gallagher on a mission to stop Romanov from destroying the United States. As Bertrand and Gallagher work to discover why Maximus harbors a deep hatred toward America, they uncover a conspiracy brewing against the Ultimate Agency, and one man will make the ultimate sacrifice.
Keep up with Derek on Social Media!
Social Media Links:
Amazon Page: http://amzn.to/2uz6cHl
GoodReads Page: http://bit.ly/2xsozxt
FB Page: http://bit.ly/2xzAmL6
FB Fan Club – The Ultimate Agency: http://bit.ly/2xjfgkp
I’ve been trying to get to 30,000 words by the end of October so I can knock out the other 50,000 in November during NaNoWriMo. As of yesterday, I am at just over 16,000 – I did 3,000 just last night.
This one has been going a little slower for me. The plot is a little more complicated than most things I’ve written – and then on top of my complicated plot, I have all that romance arc to weave in. I do like plot-driven romances a lot more than I like the ones that just jump straight into the sexy stuff – and I was having a hard time finding some balance.
The outline I usually use for plotting can be found in the book The Plot Whisperer – and it works great! Then I discovered a book the other night called Romancing The Beat. It was exactly what I needed to keep the tension and romance high while also keeping my story moving forward. I’m super excited to see how it plays out.
If you haven’t seen on my Facebook page I have this super awesome gift up for grabs:
All I’m asking for entries is that you like my page, or follow me on Goodreads and leave a comment. No tagging. No sharing 🙂 Head on over and get your name in the drawing today → HERE