By nmurray, Feb 21 2020 03:13PM
Hello Chris, from across the pond, I am so glad that you can be with me today. Please share with us all your words of wisdom about being an author and about your writing journey.
1. What made you want to write a book?
It was back in 1987 when my brother-in-law dared me to write a book. At that time I was becoming a fervent visitor of liquidation sales, yard, tag and garage sales as well as visiting and buying spaces in indoor and outdoor swap meets. He said he'd never seen someone so involved in private sales and secondhand purchases before, and that I certainly knew what I was doing. Garage Sale Mania ended up being the first non-fiction book on the subject and it sold right away to a medium-sized publisher. It became a bestseller in its own right. I'm sure that was the start of my book writing career and I haven't stopped since. Now I write from inspiration and not dares or prodding. Of course, everything now is fiction.
2. Tell us about you and where you live.
I was born in Los Angeles and raised on the beaches of Southern California. It was only until 2009 when I moved in with my twin sister that I relocated in Sylvania, Alabama. It was quite a culture shock to go from the concrete jungle, of sorts, to the the wide expanse of rural living, surrounded by heavy brush and forests. I'm still not a full-blown deep-south resident in heart, but I've enjoyed the transition. I truly live in a "holler" at the bottom of a ravine.
3. What have you written and what are you working on now?
I've written and published 13 books, mostly fiction in various genres, which appear on Amazon. Among those genres are SiFi, YA distopian and fantasy, adult thrillers, paranormal, military espionage, erotic romance and supernatural. I've adopted the pen name Christy J. Breedlove to write all my young adult fiction. I'm currently working on last edits of book number 2 in the Screamcatcher series, which has the sub-title Dream Chasers. Book 3 of the series will come out in the Summer, finishing up the trilogy.
4. How did you come up with the idea of your latest book Screamcatcher: Web World?
It all started with a dream catcher. This iconic item, which is rightfully ingrained in Indian lore, is a dream symbol respected by the culture that created it. It is mystifying, an enigma that that prods the imagination. Legends about the dream catcher are passed down from multiple tribes. There are variations, but the one fact that can be agreed upon is that it is a nightmare entrapment device, designed to sift through evil thoughts and images and only allow pleasant and peaceful dreams to enter into consciousness of the sleeper.
I wondered what would happen to a very ancient dream catcher that was topped off with dreams and nightmares. What if the nightmares became too sick or deathly? What if the web strings could not hold anymore visions? Would the dream catcher melt, burst, vanish, implode? I reasoned that something would have to give if too much evil was allowed to congregate inside of its structure. I found nothing on the Internet that offered a solution to this problem—I might have missed a relevant story, but nothing stood out to me. Stephen King had a story called Dream Catcher, but I found nothing in it that was similar to what I had in mind. So I took it upon myself to answer such a burning question. Like too much death on a battlefield could inundate the immediate location with lost and angry spirits, so could a dream catcher hold no more of its fill of sheer terror without morphing into something else, or opening up a lost and forbidden existence. What would it be like to be caught up in another world inside the webs of a dream catcher, and how would you get out? What would this world look like? How could it be navigated? What was the source of the exit, and what was inside of it that threatened your existence? Screamcatcher: Web World, the first in the series, was my answer. I can only hope that I have done it justice.
5. How do you market your books and do your promotion methods work?
My promotion methods are intense. As of late, I've submitted over 1,650 book review packages to listed reviewers. All of my pitch letters were personally written after having read the bios and guidelines of the review sources. I've received over 160 requests for the book and I'm currently stacking up the reviews on Amazon. I also announce the book on FB, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, GoodReads, AllAuthor, Author's Den, Kindle Cafe, Reddit, and numerous other display sites and writing groups.
I have a promotion manager who uses all of her contacts to get the word out. I have used paid ads many times, and I have to be careful about which ones are productive and those that pay dividends. Many of my promotion methods work, but you have to remember how difficult it is today with the increased number of titles that are now available. You have to be persistent and positive about branding your name and getting any exposure at all. Just recently, I've approached producers and directors for a book-to-movie deal, and have one actress who is interested in being attached to the project.
6. Where can readers find your book for sale?
Here is my Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/Chris-Harold-Stevenson/e/B001K8UUBK
Thank you Chris, I am amazed at the amount of review request you have sent out. I really hope that your hard work pays off and you get lots of lovely reviews.
All the best