I’m excited because I just did my first author interview this week! I was honored to be able to snag a bit of Jonas Lee’s time for a quick interview about his book (that I just finished by the way and you have to check it out) and a little bit about his writing influences and style. Check out the interview below. Also, come back here on Monday for my review of his first book in the Carter Gabel series, A Time to Reap!
1. Tell us a bit about yourself!
I’m your typical mid-western guy. I enjoy the outdoors and traveling to new places. I’m also a nerd at heart, I love movies, video games and graphic novels. When it comes to free time (whenever I can find it) I daze out and think up new and interesting stories that try to borderline the plausible and the remarkable. I’d never say no to peanut M&M’s and I currently work full time in the exciting world of IT inventory for a hospital.
2. What inspired you to write “A Time to Reap”?
A Time to Reap initially was just a short piece of fan-fiction after reading The Time Travelers Wife. I just kept thinking what their children or grandchildren would be like. I wrote the first chapter almost eight years ago and didn’t look again until last year. I was going through the motions of finding a literary agent, getting to know the blogging waters and just thought that putting out a free chapter-per-week story would be a way to draw in readers.
Eventually, the characters started growing on me and the story started picking up. It was all fan-driven from that point on. I was writing it for the surprise and for the interaction for more than half the novel. From the mid-point on, I pulled it off the site and focused on pursuing an Indie writing path.
3. What was the writing process like for you during this book? Any struggles you had to overcome or interesting stories you’d like to share with us?
Writing this book was very fast-paced, I’d crank out a chapter a day in some respects. The scenes would just move in and out of my stream of thought and instead of questioning them, I just wrote them all down [cause that’s where editors come in].
The struggle with my first book is, well, it’s my first book. There are so many things I picked up on, learned from and grew from since the first book, I’m already looking forward to reshaping some of the flaws I’ve seen. On top of the writing, being new to the world of readers, I’m pretty unknown. Getting a fan-base is still an ongoing struggle because I do enjoy organic leads and not having to pay for people to come and check out my pages.
4. I love Carter’s sarcastic attitude. There were plenty of times I laughed while I read the book. Does he happen to be modeled after someone in your life – maybe yourself?
Carter has a lot of me in him. I am sarcastic, spontaneous and too eager at times. His faults in the first book reflect a lot of my own as a writer and for those that continue to grow with Carter into the second book will see both him and I mature, while still keeping his fun side to him.
If readers ever have the chance to get to know an author and read their work, a lot of personality shines through, especially early on. A lot of my friends and family who have read the novel point out the similarities of sarcasm. The rest was trying to remember a time when I was Carter’s age and not thinking so rationally as I do now.
5. Do you have a set number of books you intend to write for the Carter Gabel series?
There are three set for the Legend of Carter Gabel. The second one is already out and I am hammering away at the third one. I am still toying with the notion of making a novella from other peoples perspectives in certain situations. Since we can see through Carter’s perception, I think it may add to the overall storyline at some point.
6. Any other books and/or series you are working on currently?
Beyond Carter and the gang, I have a series that’s essentially mapped out with a few books already completed. The Dusk series as it’s being called at this point, will consist of a lot of paranormal / fantasy based plots intertwining magic with science and religion. It’s quite a beast and requires some major free time and/or publishing help. With that said, it’s currently on the back burner.
The next series is starting to formulate and as soon as Carter gets all of his story completed, it is itching to get out. The Haven Hill series will look at a post apocalyptic scenario, but it won’t be your average nuclear/bio-weapon/zombie type scenario. It’ll incorporate a steampunk element while running parallel with sci-fi fantasy. It has so many elements, I don’t think this post would have enough space to contain it all.
7. For all of us aspiring writers out there, what advice can you share with us?
I know there are authors who preach reading and writing or the “write what you know” shtick. Personally, I’d just suggest writing what you’d want to read. Write for that little voice that is telling you a story (either through little flashes of a scene or an emotion). Whatever is making you want to write, make sure it is the story itself and not something as a result of it.
8. Do you have a favorite author that inspired you to pursue your writing career?
I don’t have an author that inspired me to write, it’s just a feeling that I have to follow. There are inspirational authors I’ve met along the way that encourage me to keep writing. Most of them are Indies, but to name a few: Shannon A Thompson, Nina Soden, Jacqueline E Smith, Zachary Chopchinski and my favorite literary grandmother, JB Salsbury.
9. Where can we find you online? (Blog, Social Media, Personal Website. Anywhere we can find you!)
I’m available at 9 locations now. Come and take a look!
Thank you so much for the interview, Jonas!
P.S. I love the fact that I’ve met another nerd. And Jonas is a pretty cool guy. Go check out his social media and blogs, but most importantly, check out his book: A Time to Reap! If you like science fiction YA, you will seriously love this!
P.P.S. My review will be posted on Monday! I already told you this, but I wanted to remind you. Come back here and read what I thought about the book. ❤