Mercedes Fox ~ Author

My Writing Blog

Tag: Short Stories (Page 1 of 2)

Meet Author Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr

Hola, lovelies! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat with guest author Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr

Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr. is a native of Hampton, Virginia whose main goal is to spread motivation, inspiration and love. His work serves to encourage others to look past their differences and focus on uniting to make the world a better place. He currently resides in Tampa, Florida serving his community as a youth sports coach, mentor and motivational speaker, as well as community activist. While we all face challenges in life, his philosophy is that perseverance, positivity and a heart full of love will enable us to rise above our struggles and become the instruments to spark constructive societal change.

Enjoy this sample:  “You Ain’t Hungry Until I’m Starving” (nonfiction/motivational/poetry/short-stories):

Simultaneously touching and gritty, “You Ain’t Hungry Until I’m Starving” promotes peace and equality by offering unique insight into some of the most complicated issues of our time. “The secret is – there really is no secret!” Growing up an African-American man with some Native American ancestry, Buggs has been gifted with a broad and unbiased view of race relations in America. Never one to shy away from the harsh realities of life, he instead chooses to redirect our human confusion and frustration toward finding amicable solutions that express the best of humanity. This book serves to fulfill our deepest inner cravings and provide much needed nutrition for the soul. Buggs’ poetic approach brings people together with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the glory of life itself.

Vid’s Viddles: Daily Vitamins for the Soul” – Newly released (Nonfiction/personal-growth/motivational):

With “Vid’s Viddles,” eclectic writer Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr. opens a new season of freedom, insight and joy. It’s a point of view with no filters that is at once profound, clarifying and moving. These collections of short motivational pieces offer words of wisdom about life, love, spirit, leadership, friendship, pain, fear, happiness and more. “Vid’s Viddles” serve to inspire personal growth through tough times, helping adults and teens stay vital and in love with life, savoring the beauty that each day brings.

Getting Out of the Dark: How to Have a Life Full of Success, Wealth, and Happiness” (nonfiction/personal growth/time management/business/finance/motivation):

Getting Out of the Dark gives sound advice on how to achieve true success, wealth and happiness. This book reveals one of the most essential elements that most books miss when speaking about obtaining success and wealth. This book’s advice and principles are worthy of reflection.

Why do you write? I write because it is my passion, my outlet, I write to inspire others and I write for those who do not have a voice.

When did you decide to become a writer? I started writing when I was in high school. I started writing as an outlet. People who read my earlier writings were moved by my words and they encouraged me to share my writings with the world. I became a serious writer when my college professors and close friends suggested I write a book.

How long does it usually take you to complete a book? I am a perfectionist, so the completion of a book can take me 2-5 years. As far as the actual writing process, I usually finish writing a book within a few months to a year.

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something? I write what I feel. A song, an event, or just my thoughts will cause me to sit down and write. I never force myself to write and I never pre-plan a book. My books are a collection of thoughts and pieces that just goes well together.

Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured? I don’t structure my day around writing. I like to let my writings to come out naturally, unplanned and unforced. My special time to write is whenever I have something to write I just go into my own world and write.

How do you think you’ve evolved creatively? Funny, I haven’t thought of this. I have been told my writings are very creative and lyrical. I think I should leave this answer up to my readers.

Do you listen to music or watch TV/movie while you write? I sometimes listen to music when I write. Sometimes the music puts me in the mood I need for a piece. I do my best to not listen to music when I write because I don’t want to subconsciously take ideas from any artists without their permission.

What have you written? I have written newly released “Vid’s Viddles: Daily Vitamins for the Soul”, the short ebook “Getting Out of the Dark: How to Have a Life Full of Success, Wealth, and Happiness”, which was at one time one of Smashwords most downloaded ebooks. My first book “You Ain’t Hungry Until I’m Starving” was a bestseller in its genre and won a few book awards.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you? I don’t work to an outline or plot when I am writing. I just write what I feel and see where it takes me, but that is because I write a piece at a time.

Do you design your own book covers or have someone else? If you use someone else would you tell us who/website?  “You Ain’t Hungry Until I’m Starving” was designed by my editor Marci Wise. “Getting Out of the Dark” was  designed by the publishing company that I own, 4-U-Nique Publishing (www.4-U-NiquePublishing.com). “Vid’s Viddles” and upcoming books “Vid’s Viddles (Volume II)” and “It’s Cold Out Here You Need a Coat” are designed by 4-U-Nique Publishing with the help of Stephen Denas (http://www.psiborgproductions.com).

Any advice for aspiring authors? Write with your heart. Never forget why you are writing. This will carry you through the tough times that all authors face. Also, do not take anything critics, publishers, or reviewers say about your work.

Where do your ideas come from? My ideas come from personal experiences, experiences of others who are close to me and events that are happening in the world.

What is the hardest thing about writing? The hardest thing about writing for me is deciding when I need to stop writing and put the pieces together for the book.

What is your favorite movie or TV show? I have no one favorite movie or TV show. The show I look at the most at the moment is Shark Tank.

Which writers inspire you?  James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Martin Luther King Jr. and Paulo Coelho are inspirations of mine.

What is the current book you are promoting?  “Vid’s Viddles”

What is your next project? My next project is “It’s Cold Out Here You Need A Coat.” This is schedule to be released in July of 2017

What one person from history would you like to meet and why? This is a tough one. There are so many people from the past who I would love to talk with. I would like to talk with Muhammad Ali (Rest In Peace). I would want to know how he dealt with everything he want threw during his stance against the Vietnam War. How he stayed confident and motivated through the ordeal. I would also want to pick his brain on how to become more of a humanitarian.

If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be? If I could do one thing to change the world, I would organize a big event for everyone in the world to talk. There would be no weapons. We would have music, food, and just talk about our difference. We would talk and listen to each other so we could understand one another. We wouldn’t get caught up in our differences, we would see our similarities. We would love one another like we were created to do.

Who is your favorite author and which of their books is your favorite? I have many favorite authors and favorite books. However, to save on time I will mention one of my favorites is Paulo Coelho and his book “The Alchemist” is one of my all time favorites.

If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why? The Prophet by Khalil Gibran without a doubt. This book is filled with so much wisdom, it has inspired people all across the world, and it has outstood the test of time.

What book are you currently reading or just finished?

University of Success by Og Mandino

What do your readers mean to you? I cannot put in words what my readers mean to me. They inspire me to continue to write with passion and to give my best for them. I always say authors and publishers should work together because our whole purpose is to give the readers what they want; whether it’s to inspire them, take them into a fantasy, or giving them a chance to solve a mystery. Are writings are for them.

Is there a book you love you’d like to recommend to others?

There are a few books I would love to recommend to others.

Pain, Passion, & Purpose – Marci Wise

Still Beautiful: The Color of Beauty – Kevin Bates

75 Marketing Tips to Grow Your Business – Linda Coss

Secrets of a Millionaire Mind – T. Harv Eker

University of Success – Og Mandino

Tell us something unique about you.  I am a walking oxymoron, a true Gemini. As you can see I don’t have favorites because I have a diverse array of interests. I have to read several books at one time because it helps me focus. If I read several books at one time I will finish them within a few days or weeks. If I read a book at a time, I lose interest quickly and I mostly likely won’t get around to finishing the book for a few months or years.

Many thanks Vid! For more about Vid and his work, and to pick up a copy of your own, follow the links below:

Website / Blog / Facebook / Twitter / Linkedin / Goodreads / Pinterest / Amazon / Smashwords / Instagram / YouTube / Google

Meet Author Shane Joseph

Hola, lovelies! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat with author Shane Joseph

Shane Joseph is a graduate of the Humber School for Writers and the author of four novels and three collections of short stories. His work After the Flood won the best fantasy novel award at Write Canada in 2010. His short fiction has appeared in international literary journals and anthologies. His latest novel, In the Shadow of the Conquistador, was released in the fall of 2015. His new short story collection, Crossing Limbo, is due out in the summer of 2017. For details visit his website at www.shanejoseph.com

Book sample: Extract from Paradise Revisited (short stories, literary fiction):

The first time I met Sena, I recognized him as a shanty dweller from the other side of the paddy field. We rarely went over there other than when flying kites during the day. After sunset, the men—subsistence farmers, rickshaw coolies, bullock cart drivers and casual labourers—returned drunk to their cadjan-roofed shanties.  Their women chewed betel and spat red streams into the sand outside the shacks while huddling over scraps of food cooking on wood-fuelled open-air fireplaces. They seemed afraid to go indoors to be ravaged by the men. Sex was the only entertainment inside those sooty candlelit hovels, further dulled by the effects of kassippu and toddy. Yells of lust and pain echoed across the paddies on clear nights when the mosquitoes weren’t hissing and the wind blew in from the fields.

By contrast, our burgeoning housing estate was an oasis of peace and affluence in what had once been a rural community. Available land in the city of Colombo was running out, and so my father had decided to move back to his childhood home in Kotte, to the suburbs, at the dawn of the ’70s. My grandfather had left Dad a piece of land that he built our house on. The area had received a boost 10 years later when the federal parliament moved out of Colombo into Kotte.  Bank and Mercantile executives, the nouveau-riche who had made it in the new export industries, and returning petro-dollar workers from the Middle East were pouring their wealth into new brick houses with all the modern conveniences of running water, electricity, telephones and TV, while squeezing the rural folk into the margins of shanty-towns. Resentment by the locals hovered under the surface, but it was rarely expressed in those days.

One day, a huge fire broke out in the shanty town and its inmates ran out frantically; children screaming, women wailing, as meagre possessions were tossed out of cinder box houses that were flaming like overlarge kilns. Black smoke swirled over the paddy fields sending crows squawking into the heavens.

Our housing estate’s denizens hunkered down. Opening our doors to these folk was to invite trouble—after all, they were riff-raff, and good middle-class people did not associate with them!

The fire brigade never arrived. A police jeep came by only the following day, and an inspector, aided by two constables, disembarked to walk amidst the smoking ruins and write his report. The few people who returned to their shacks began piling up whatever had been salvaged and the bolder ones had already started to rebuild their destroyed homes. They ignored the cops, as if handouts and help were things that they never expected in their lives. Shanty towns made their own rules and outsiders were not invited.

Why do you write? There are too many stories accumulated in me, from the four countries I have lived in and the 60plus countries that I have visited. To not capture these experiences would be a life wasted, I think.

When did you decide to become a writer? I had a false start when I was 17 when I had a couple of short stories published. Very soon thereafter, I realized that I didn’t have much to say at that age, that I had to do more living in order to mine experiences, and I put writing on hold for 22 years. When I started again in 2001, I knew I was ready. My four published novels, four more unpublished ones, and more than 50 published short stories have come since this second start.

How do you think you’ve evolved creatively? I think one evolves fastest in times of loss. Every time I left a home, a country, a job, a relationship, or they left me, I grew creatively. It’s almost as if you have to pay a tax in order to gain creatively. I started writing short stories and then moved onto the novel. Now I have returned to short stories because I find them more powerful and say much with an economy of words. As I get older, I want every word to count and I don’t want to waste my words.

What have you written? I have written two novels about my native Sri Lanka Redemption in Paradise (2004) and The Ulysses Man (2011), and a collection of short stories, Paradise Revisited (2013), set in that country. I have also written a speculative fiction novel set in North America, After the Flood (2009). My recent publication was a novel set in Peru and Canada, In the Shadow of the Conquistador (2015). I have also written two short story collections set in North America: Fringe Dwellers (2008) and Crossing Limbo (due in 2017). I have four other novels in submittable form waiting for the right moment to be pitched. In addition I have written over 450 book reviews posted on Goodreads and Amazon, and published in international literary print publications. I have been writing a blog for almost 9 years that has been syndicated on other blog sites and in community newspapers. I have done all this writing in addition to holding down a paying, non-literary day job and editing for a family-owned publishing house.

What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer? You can’t force a story out. It comes when it comes and sometimes that can take many years. A couple of my novels have taken eight years to go from first draft to publication. Some, although written, may never be published as their time may not be right or their time may have passed. One of my short stories was published after 30 years.

Do you ever feel self-conscious when writing love/sex scenes? These are indeed hard but necessary scenes to write because the lens bores right into the heart of the characters during sexual intimacy. I have used sex and love increasingly in my work and that tells me that my writing is maturing and my approach to the subject is bold. I am not self-conscious when writing about sex or love but I also realize that readers have different tolerance levels for “how much.” My last novel, In the Shadow of the Conquistador, has a lot of sex in it and has been labeled misogynistic by some while I have considered it my most feminist novel.

What do you think of traditional publishing vs. self-publishing? Both are fair game in today’s world and there is no stigma attached to either. It is clear that traditional publishing is in the business of earning a profit for its shareholders and defaults to subject matter with a broad appeal, with a focus on branding, marketing and worldwide distribution in multiple languages, with corporate money to back up these efforts. Self-publishing is a purer expression of the writer’s voice and may appeal to a narrower niche, often published in one language only, and relies more on word-of mouth than on marketing dollars. Each model reaps results according to the effort and money put in. Sometimes, the quality of what is written, and its message, whether self-published or trade published, catches the zeitgeist and goes viral – we are all hoping for such an event with our work.

Tell us something unique about you: My fingerprint, nothing else. Perhaps my retina and DNA might be unique as well. I think we should not kid ourselves that we are unique as writers. We all have stories to tell, some different than others, but they are all survival tales, or else we wouldn’t be alive to tell them. It is how we tell them that will garner us readers, or not, and make us unique, or not. So I will let my readers determine my uniqueness.

There ya have it folks! For more about Shane and his work, follow the links below:

Website / Blog / Facebook / Twitter / Linkedin / Goodreads / AmazonCA / AmazonUS / BookTrailer / YouTube

Meet Author Stef Smulders

Halo me lovelies! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat with guest author Stef Smulders

Stef Smulders was born in The Netherlands in 1960 and moved with husband Nico and their dog to Italy in 2008 to start bed-and-breakfast Villa I Due Padroni in the beautiful wine region Oltrepò Pavese south of Milan. In 2014 he published his first volume of short, anecdotical stories (in Dutch) about daily life among the Italians entitled “Italiaanse Toestanden”. It was well received by readers, leading to a second volume of humorous anecdotes. A third volume is to be published spring 2017.

Enjoy a short sample of Stef’s work: Living in Italy: the Real Deal – How to Survive the Good Life; a creative nonfiction boekomslagpaperbackfrontukcollection of witty short stories about the adventures of a Dutch expat in Italy

How long does it usually take you to complete a book?  I write about 1000 words a day so for a 200-300 pages (60.000 words) book I take two months and then about as much to correct and process proofreaders’ comments.

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?  I had written about my adventures on a weblog since years and wanted to do something more permanent with the material as it seemed worth it.

Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?  No, I do not have specific times, I just start when I feel like it. Sometimes I prepare by reading a bit and thinking about what the contents of the next piece should be and then later on I write the piece in one go. It takes about an hour or hour and a half to produce a 1000 word piece.

How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?  I have become much more confident after I managed to finish my first book. I know now that I am able to do it.

Do you listen to music or watch TV/movie while you write?  No, the less disturbance the better. Classical musicproostpadroni is okay though.

What have you written?  I have published two books in Dutch about my experiences as an expat in Italy and written a third, to be published next spring. Then I have also written a novel based on my youth, which is currently under review with a publisher.

What is the current book you are promoting?  The English translation of my first collection of anecdotal stories about my life as an expat in Italy.

You mentioned you’re writing a new story. How about a teaser?  When we bought our home nine months ago it was ready to move into. And now?
We are shipwrecked in the kitchen of the downstairs apartment. A single sheet of plastic between the hall and the sitting room is the only thing that protects us from the heavy dust of the building site. All day, we are assaulted by the sound of workmen shouting, drilling and hammering. A couple of hours ago the electricity cut out and it’s starting to get chilly in here. Every evening we escape upstairs via the dusty, grimy staircase, where we try to find solace by watching TV in our future living room. The living room is also separated by a sheet of plastic from the kitchen, the bedroom and the office. There are gaping holes in the walls in all of these three rooms, made weeks ago in preparation for the doors and a new window. Now they are serving as tunnels bringing in the draught and the cold. Exhausted and numbed from the endless turmoil surrounding us, we are staring out into space in silence. We are hardly aware of what’s on the screen. WHAT HAVE WE LET OURSELVES IN FOR?

Who is your favorite character in your book and why?  Probably the builder Torti, the grumpy old man, although in reality it wasn’t funny, from a distance he’s quite a character.

What is your next project? I have lots of ideas, maybe a book about the Crazy Canadian Camper Adventures we experienced during a decade of traveling through Canada. Or a satire based on Alice in Wonderland. Or … etc. 😉

Would you say there is a stigma to being self-published?  In the Netherlands yes, surely. It is very difficult to get img_0153publicity or reviews from more official journals, magazines, and websites. I noticed that this is much less a problem in the English speaking world.

Is there a book you love you’d like to recommend to others?  In my own genre I would recommend the books by Tim Parks and Beppe Severgnini, both very insightful and funny.

Many thanks! For more about Stef and his work, follow the links below:

Website / Facebook / Goodreads / Amazon / Smashwords / BookTrailer

Meet Author Emmanuel Obi, Jr

Hola my lovelies! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat with author Emmanuel Obi, Jr

Born and raised in Auburn, Alabama; Emmanuel Obi has lived in Switzerland since 2007. Emmanuel’s passion for writing began at a young age, though he never pursued it as a profession. A graduate from the University of Manchester with a Master’s degree in Healthcare Ethics and Law, Emmanuel uses writing and filmmaking as a way to “maintain his sanity” and share his passion for storytelling.

Book sample: Bruce Howard – Gentleman with a Loaded Gun

Mystery/Short story/Love story

I stood in my office looking through the window, staring out at nothing. The repairs to my office had been completed about3d-bh-vol-1-and-2 a week ago. When I was discharged I came here rather than go home. When I heard the knock on the door I knew the reason why I hadn’t gone home was here.

I saw Rebecca standing in my doorway; her arm was in a sling.

“Hi.” She said meekly.

“Hey.”

“I know it’s not your fault.”

“Rebecca, don’t.”

“I want to be with you.” She replied.

“You can’t!” But I wanted her to be.

“Why?” She shouted.

“Look at your arm.”

“You didn’t do this! This isn’t your fault!”

“But I am the reason.”

“No you’re not.”

“So if I was a teacher you would have been shot just the same?” I tried to get her to understand.

“So what, I could be dating a teacher and get hit by a bus tomorrow. Is that his fault?”

“Rebecca, please.” I pleaded.

“Don’t leave me because you’re afraid of me getting hurt.”

“Rebecca, Nancy was right. I’m not the kind of guy that anyone should be with. My life is too dangerous. I can’t be responsible for hurting the ones I love.”

“So then you push the ones you love away and you live alone. That makes sense.” Her sarcasm was clear.

“It does make sense. And you know it.”

We stood in silence for a moment. I wanted to hold her but I knew it would be best if I didn’t.

“So then that’s it.” She fought to keep her composure.

“Yeah.” I struggled. She walked out.

“I love you.” She said as she closed the door.

“Don’t.”

How long does it usually take you to complete a book?  It depends. The first volume of Bruce Howard took me a couple of months but that was because I was mostly writing it on the train on my way to and from to work. Bruce Howard volume two – Gentleman with a Loaded Gun, took me about a month. Hopefully my next book will only take a month mmp_edit22since I am participating in National Novel Writing Month

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?  This past novel came from the fact that I did not realize my previous works were actually being downloaded. Long story short, five years ago I published some short stories on Smashwords and did not realize they were being distributed to other outlets. Fast forward five years to 2016 and I had over 400,000 downloads (all free, so I am not rich yet unfortunately). It was so motivating that people actually wanted to read what I wrote so I sat down and started writing.

How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?  Honestly, my creativity evolved, I believe, from growing up poor. When you do not have so many toys or too many options then in order to entertain yourself as a child you must use your creativity.

What have you written?  I have written a lot, everything from mystery to horror to crude humor. I have even dabbled in erotica (which I have not published – I am a little too shy for that).However, I like testing myself and my ability to be creative.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you?  Both. Bruce Howard, Barrios and McCloud and Fear the Unknown series are titles in which I do not plan. I just write and see where the story takes me. I may have a general idea of where I want to go but I am definitely not beholden to a concept. However, works like Miracle Men (coming soon) and Guardian Angel (also coming soon) will be outlined with more of a plan. However, nothing will be in stone.

Is there any marketing technique you used that had an immediate impact on your sales figures?  The second I find a promotion technique that works I will let you know!

Any advice for aspiring authors?  Patience. You will not sell 200,000 on the first day unless you are already ridiculouslymmp_edit22-12 famous. Give it time and keep waiting. (This is coming from a guy that is completely impatient)

Where do your ideas come from?  Any and everywhere, from a random person at the train station to a jerk at work. I try to see the world a bit differently and that helps with ideas.

What is the hardest thing about writing?  The process itself. It is incredibly challenging to put together words in a manner that describes something but does not get repetitive and gives the reader a clear picture. It is a puzzle, the words are the pieces used to make the picture come together. The end result is always glorious.

What is the current book you are promoting? Bruce Howard – Gentleman with a Loaded Gun which is the second volume of short stories centered around a private investigator, Bruce Howard, and picks up where volume 1 leaves the reader.

Do you have any formal education in creative writing? If not are you planning to go to school?  No. I thought about doing it but I feel that it might strip something away from me. As though the course would want me to fall in line with some ideal that will alter my style. So I won’t do it. I want to be me.

What is your next project? My next project will be during National Novel Writer’s Month and it will be the novelization of a short story I wrote five years ago, Guardian Angel. It is a novel about a woman that must abandon her family in order to protect them but cannot stay away.

Do you ever feel self-conscious when writing love/sex scenes?  Always. Whenever I write those scenes, which there are a few in Bruce Howard, or whenever I write erotica there is a shy-smile on my face and it feels like I am blushing or something. I can’t help it. I cannot write those scenes without feeling like a mischievous teenager with a cat-that-ate-the-canary smile.

What do your fans mean to you?  It’s strange to think that I might even have fans (that I don’t know or related to), but if I do, then they mean everything to me. I have written entire stories for one personmmp_edit22-4 because I know they are entertained by my writing. In fact, I write two monthly series. One is a paid series ($0.99) while the other series is and always will be free as a thank you to any readers or fans that I may have.

How can readers discover more about you and you work?  Go to www.noirshortstories.com and subscribe. There are links to my works there, videos of my interviews and a book trailer I did for Bruce Howard – Gentleman with a Loaded Gun.

Thanks so much! For more about Emmanuel and his work, follow the links below:

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Amazon / Smashwords / BookTrailer1 / Booktrailer2

Meet Author: Rima Alkhany

Howdy lovelies! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat with guest author Rima Alkhany

She is Syrian writer and researcher. She has PhD in Arabic language.

Book blurb: I have 27 books varies between literature, poetry, short story and novel. Then, I recently specialized in research. One of my most famous books the novel Manahel al Ghamam. The title means the generosity of clouds. It is about an innocent young lady who loves her homeland and all people. For that reason she sacrificed and lost a lot. One of very short stories book that is most favorite among readers: Naseha Mota’khera. The title means belated advice. It contains very short stories. As well as, it includes short stories happened to the author.

If you use a Pen Name why did you choose it? My pen name is Omferas. It means in Arabic Feras’s mother. Feras is the oldest son of mine.

Why do you write? It’s an interesting question. Many authors are asked same question. Their answers were different.

Personally, I write to express my thoughts, feelings and believes.

When did you decide to become a writer? I started for the first time when I wrote an essay successfully at school. My teacher said “you’ll be a creative writer in the future”. I did not believe it back then. I took it as a joke, or an expectation. My decision to be a writer was too late. I started when I was 35 years. I began writing on the internet, and in diverse forums. I have written and published a weekly article about special social issues. Yet, I was looking for a place to publish my articles. Once, a department of one of websites gave me a site that was named after my name! It was for free! However, if I did not accept, they would be working on it alone. Then, I took the site and began to work there until now.

Name of the site currently: Fursan al Thakafa (Knights of Culture)

www.omferas.com

www.omferas.net

www.fursan.ws

What genre are your books? At first I wrote poetry and short stories. I wrote story which I’ve found it fun and full of emotion. But now, I love to write novels and research, because they have a deeper meaning. And now, I spend most of my time between reading and writing. It’s real enjoyable.

What draws you to this genre? I find the joy to write in different literature genres. Especially when that my readings are varied. However, I have found myself into writing novel and research for they have depth, beauty and positive impact than other genres. Moreover, my audience would be more selective. The question is: Is it whenever we get older we will be changed? Is it normal? When you are changing for better, you will be a good and positive author.

How long does it usually take you to complete a book? Sometimes a month, months and mostly a year. For example, my novel Huda, It took me one month to write. Yet, evaluating and correcting it took almost a year.

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something? Whenever I feel the urge to write or a new idea came to my mind, I sit and write. Sometimes daily life’s events and meeting others whether strangers or friends inspire me to write. I am anxious to lose any thoughts I have so, I write them down as soon as possible I can.

Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured? I dislike routine. So, I don’t specify time through the day to write. In addition to that, having family prevents to have specific time to write considering them first priority to me. So, whenever I have free time I spend it to write. My day starts early morning when I wake up to offer Fajir prayer, read Quran then I start my readings and writings. Then, my family duties start with preparing breakfast. Note, that I sleep very early and barely sleep a little.

How do you think you’ve evolved creatively? I learn every day by writing in different websites and getting criticized. Moreover, I always have dissatisfaction because I am always looking to become better.

Do you listen to music or watch TV/movie while you write? No. I prefer completely quite room. I dislike noises while writing.

What have you written? I’ve written four books of poetry, more than six books of short stories, 5 novels. As well as, I have done tons of researches and articles through the past ten years.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you? There is no certain plan to do it. Sometimes I plan to make the plot first, then change later when it needs to. In other time, I just start with what came up to my mind then I plan the plot around the events slowly.

Do you design your own book covers or have someone else? If you use someone else would you tell us who/website? I am very happy to say that my daughter is the one who designed most of my books covers. She is a fantastic digital artist with great affection. Her name is Sarah al Hakim. Her page: syaraa.deviantart.com. She only uploads her art works rather than the designs.

Is there any marketing technique you used that had an immediate impact on your sales figures? The strong social relationships in real life and internet were support for me. No special techniques really.

Any advice for aspiring authors? Increase your personal relationships. Live real life. Be adventurous and courage without recklessness. Learn authors’ successful experiences and understand how they think. Hunt down your ideas by writing them. Read a lot.

Give us an insight into your main character. What does he do that is so special? Aseela is idealistic person that doesn’t accept seeing things going wrong. She is much deliberated in her emotions. Such character may be rare in our society. Yet, I like her because she understands what her real goal is and knows how to take action. This character appears in my novel Manahel al Ghamam.

Where do your ideas come from? It comes after a good conversation, reading a book and contemplation moments. Ideas come suddenly so, I should write them down as soon as possible or they will vanish.

What is the hardest thing about writing? The most difficult thing in writing is to find a new idea, and type in an attractive and interesting way.

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book? My latest novel was about my country .The hardest part is collecting real stories and historical records from elderly people.

Which writers inspire you? I’m looking for the most beautiful book of each writer. Such as Muhammad al-Maghut. He is a Syrian writer. I like his unique way of writing.

What is the current book you are promoting? It’s the last novel Huda I wrote it for three years ago.

You mentioned you’re writing a new story. How about a teaser? It is about world being all as Hollywood. Won’t say any more about it!

Who is your favorite character in your book and why? Aseelah in my novel Manahel al Ghamam. She looks for truth behind everything and always straight forward. She hopes to make change to her surroundings.

Who is your least favorite character and why? Zaher’s mother in novel Ahlam Mojanaha. She is prisoned in her past and memories that she became crazy.

Do you have any formal education in creative writing? If not are you planning to go to school? I didn’t study in any school nor am I going to do so.

Do you have any “how to write” type books/instructional you’d like to recommend? I do have couple ones. I am still looking for proper publication office to print it.

What one person from history would you like to meet and why? There are so many characters I would like to meet. If I want to pick one it would be sayiduna Umar Ibn al-Khattab (ra). He was dynamic, self-assertive, frank and straight forward. He always spoke whatever was on his mind even if it displeased others.

If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be? I would stop all wars and teach people that peace solves everything. I would distribute all money in world all over again and give it to only positive people who can manage it for helping others.

Do you or have you sat down and read your book fresh off the presses as if it wasn’t yours? And if you did, what was it like? I believe it is important that every author to do so. When I do this I look at myself from new angle. It helps me to know how to make my writings better next time. As well as, I see how publishers correct or rephrase my works and figure out their thoughts.

What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer. I learned that even if a writer didn’t get famous it doesn’t mean to stop writing.

Do you ever feel self-conscious when writing love/sex scenes? I am against of doing such scenes if it serves to move desires and lust. Why uncovering such things to others? As well as it will negatively affect children if they are the readers. Sadly, writers doing such thing to gain fame rather than doing moral works to benefit others. So, there is no self-conscious feelings as I don’t do it in the first place. MF: You don’t want to read my books as I do write very explicitly 😉

What are some of your favorite books and why? There are tons of books I have read it is hard to pick one or some. My readings are varied. However, my favorite ones are critique books and life philosophy related.

What books are you currently reading or just finished? Last Days of Socrates.

What do your fans mean to you? It means that the received my thoughts and got inspired. It means a lot to me. Because I am aiming the young generation. They are the hope of the future and I will be happy if they become my fans.

Many thanks Rima! For more about Rima Alkhany follow the links below:

Website / Website / Website / Facebook / Facebook / Facebook / Twitter / LinkedIn / Email

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