Interview with C.E. Martin

C.E. Martin

Interview Date: xxx


When did you start writing, and was there a significant event that prompted you to do so?

My earliest attempts at novel writing were back in 1986- I was an avid reader of Doc Savage and Remo Williams novels, and decided that I wanted to try writing something similar. The idea of writing regular serial novels really appealed to me.

Kev's response: They do to me as well!

If you could have one superpower, what would it? (Assuming said power would be reasonably powerful.)

Telekinesis. Not only could I become the world’s greatest magician, but I’d never have to get up and get the remote controls the kids insist on leaving on the other side of the room. Plus, I could have fun messing with my dog.

Kev's response: Plus, there are always the darker uses of the power. Darth Vader, anyone? >:)

Do you have a favorite superhero from novels, comics, or movies?

The Badger. There are other heroes I like better, but those were the best comics I ever read. I like to dig out my complete collection every few years and read them over again. If I ever get to meet Mike Baron, I’m going to have to profusely thank him for all the enjoyment those comics have given me.

Kev's response: You might want to hunt his contact info down and email him. Now that you've got two novels out, I'd think you've experience the roller coaster ride of exhilaration and depression that can affect authors...

Where do you get your inspiration for writing? What motivates you?

I get ideas for novels and screenplays all the time. I could easily churn out a book a month. It’s maddening to have all these ideas and not be able to do anything with them. I need to become a successful writer so I can retire from my day job and churn out volumes of ePulp.

Kev's response: ePulp. I like that term!

Do you pre-plan your stories, or are you a by-the-seat-of-the-pants style writer?

For my latest writing efforts, which I self-published at Amazon, B&N and Smashwords, I swore off my pantser origins and went meticulous, detailed outlines and pre-planning. And I turned out a much better product. Far better than I was trying for.

Do you write only when inspired, or do you have a set schedule where you sit down to write?

With kids, a dog, a wife and a day job, I don’t get much free time. I write when I can. Some times I sit at the computer for hours and hours, forgetting to eat. I’ve stayed up on many a friday night now, writing until nearly dawn. I could probably write in excess of ten hours at a time if it weren’t for my carpal tunnel syndrome.

Kev's response: Oh my, I wish I had that capability. My body wakes up about 4 A.M. regardless of day so I can weight lift and work out. On the flip side, I'm tired as all get out by 9 P.M...

Do you have a favorite genre to write in? To read?

I like the Men’s Adventure/Pulp genre. The good vs. evil, simple storylines and fast action, with simple characters has always appealed to me. I don’t like convoluted plots and characters with emotional problems and what not. Basically, I don’t like drama. I write and read the same kind of stuff... although I do like some super science fiction sometimes, with all sorts of thinking and the like.

Kev's response: The Drama Llama! It's almost a character of its own in some novels.

What do you enjoy the most about writing?

Creating a story that’s not been done before, or taking a premise and redoing it so it turns out "right". I am often irritated by the shortcuts and shoddy writing so prevalent on TV and in movies. I like to overly-think out plots and developments. It’s like playing myself a game of chess- I figure out the best possible move, but still manage to squeeze a story out of it.

Kev's response: Don't forget, it's often easier to play "armchair quarterback" when we aren't the creator of something. I agree in trying to keep everything as realistic as possible, and eliminate the plot holes.

Is there any part of writing that you don't enjoy?

Publicizing my work. When I learned about indie publishing last year I was excited at the chance to skip the slushpiles I have lingered in for so many years. But now the reality of getting my work out there for someone to see is very daunting. I would much rather just write.

Kev's response: You're better off having a "backlog" of work. So for the short term, my advice would be to spend *some* time promoting, but write, write, write, and you can increase the promotion time later. I've seen a lot of authors go nuts on promotion, not sell many books anyway, and they've blown so much time promoting that they aren't getting new work out there.

Can you tell me something odd about yourself?

I'm told I’m scary-looking: I’m 6'5" and weigh about 300 pounds. Cheeseburgers are my favorite food. I can belch on command, much to my children's delight. I once swallowed an elephant (okay, it was a piece of metal jewelry about the size of a half-dollar, I was 4, and it was on accident- but it was an awesome Xray).

Kev's response: Mmm, cheeseburgers. Hope it's not still in you, or an MRI could be nasty.

Do you write one story at a time, or do you have several novels in the works at one time?

I try to finish one project at a time- but I do write out notes for other projects. It’s too confusing to switch from one project to another.

Kev's response: That's my process as well. Notes only, but push through one at a time.

I'm looking to advertise for evil minions for my plot to take over the world, any suggestions?

I work in a Courthouse. There are lots of evil people looking for work here. Particularly those on probation. Between them and all the lawyers, you’re bound to find enough minions for your nefarious purposes. I suggest flyers for free meals. Both the probationers and the lawyers will fall for it.

Kev's response: Wait, who the heck wants to take a chance on hiring lawyers? I mean, they'd fill the evil quotient, but who could trust 'em?

Where do you see the future as far as paper books versus digital e-books?

I think paperbacks are doomed. I used to say the opposite but I am now hooked on reading on my smartphone. It’s just so awesome to have hundreds of books on my phone, that I can carry around.
The only thing holding ebooks back in my opinion is battery life and the fragility of electronic devices. But once solar powered smart phones and tablets that can survive being dropped hit the market in the next five years, I truly feel the paper industry will start drying up and blowing away.

What are your current projects?

I’m working on the third book to my self-published trilogy. It’s a pulpish adventure tale set in a world with magic and super powers. People don’t run around in costumes fighting crime, but there are super soldiers and super threats to national security.

Kev's response: Rock on!

Do you have any advice for others about self-publishing?

DO IT! It’s SO easy. There’s really no reason not to self-publish. Yes, you could do like me and spend 20 years trying to get a conventional publisher, or you could pull those dusty manuscripts down, upload them and maybe start seeing a return on all your time and effort NOW.

Do you have any online sites where readers can find out more about you (and your books)?

I have a sometimes-updated blog for my trilogy: As I start getting more sales of the books, I’ll start updating more. And yes, the trilogy could turn into a series, if enough readers express an interest in it.

Kev's response: C.E., thank you much for joining me! Good fortune on the Mythical series, I hope you find your reader base!

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