This week I have an interview with author J. J. Angel, creator of the Tales of Power series. Withut any more delays lets get this interview started.
Jonuel: Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Angel: Writing gives me so much energy. Sometimes I will write for hours on end when I have free time. When I started on my first book, I would begin at 6 in the morning and keep writing through the day until 12 at night. I love writing so much and when my creative juices get flowing, I turn into a literary monster. It’s almost like something takes over my body (in a good way) and I just start pouring words onto paper or hitting my fingers against the keyboard. Before I know, I’ve written four or five chapters in one sitting. My stomach only encourages me to take a break when I hungry, since I need that fuel to keep on writing. I’m usually the main one among my group of writing friends that is ready to write at anytime and anywhere and I am like a cheerleader to them about writing their stories!
Jonuel: Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
Angel: I think it’s a blend for me actually. I like to be original sometimes but then dive into something completely unexpected. Since I write within the realm of speculative fiction, I want to be somewhat familiar to readers but break some traditional tropes to pave the way for new ideas and takes on different outcomes. I think be a blend will draw in readers that a familiar with the genre but putting a spin on it can intrigue them even more. I love the idea of being given familiar details or feeling about a particular genre and then discovering something new. However, I feel that you shouldn’t draw that much away from your targeted genre, alienating (no pun) your readers from your book. I know some readers enjoy getting what they want and others prefer to be swept away by something new.
Jonuel: Have you ever gotten reader’s block?
Angel: I think I may have when I was younger. However, now I rarely do and if I start to feel like I’m slipping in that zone, I’ll move on to another story I’m developing in my vault. I think it is also good to go outside and get some fresh air or go to a park or even out shopping, but bring your notepad because this will be the time when you will see something that can add to your story. Jot it down in your trusty author pad and apply those ideas to the story or stories you are developing. I try to draw in ideas from anything and anywhere. Writers are masters of meaning! The only thing that blocks me from writing is food and sleep. I need both of these things to have a clear mind, preventing another door for the dreaded “block” to slide on in. It won’t let it in!
Jonuel: What are common traps for aspiring writers?
Angel: In my opinion, “saying instead of doing”, is a big pitfall for some aspiring writers. I often hear a lot of, “I want”, but not a lot of effort to actually get those writing juices flowing. It’s very easy sometimes for aspiring writers to put off the actual writing process for other things happening in their life. I feel that as a writer, one has to make time for writing. Even if it’s only the ten minutes you have time. Write something!! It’s almost like this weird procrastination bug that bites the writer or something. I used to always say things like I was busy but until I sat my but down, tune out everything around me, and stay focus on my passion to finish my story did I actually break that habit and squat the aspiring bug. I want to see more younger writers working harder to create their worlds!
Jonuel: Do you want each book to stand on its own or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?
Angel: My book series flows into each other. I definitely want to have an arsenal of stories that blend together and link all character fluidly. I love books that have extended universes or more to them than you thought. I love books that have details you have to pay attention to that make you go back and read again that will highlight a plot point towards another book in the series. I love that. I want my readers to be invested in my characters. I want to have this gigantic universe that centers around a particular series. As of now, my plans are to connect each book with important details. I have some side stories planned that seem to provide some key information as well. I’m still outlining the details but it’s definitely the direction I’m headed in.
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J.J. is an energetic and focused creative author that enjoys immersing his ideas and creating imaginary worlds within the realms of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. He is a former Entertainment Tech Film Major and a recipient of the Unsung Hero Award for his contribution towards the anthology titled, Voices from the Bayou. When not writing, he enjoys watching creature features, stargazing, volunteering, and digital media production.